Friday, 13 August 2010
Speaking of Coffee...
In this post, I would like to talk about effects of coffee/caffeine on our organism and types of coffee drinks.
Caffeine & the human body
To begin with, coffee contains caffeine, probably the reason why it is so highly valued, and the most probable reason why almost 90% of the World's population consumes it. Now, caffeine is a psychoactive stimulant drug, which, when consumed by humans, has the effect of temporarily warding off drowsiness and restoring alertness. Another property of caffeine is that it has a diuretic effect on our body, but regular caffeine consumers grow highly tolerant to this effect, in defiance of those who seldom consume it. The precise amount of caffeine necessary to produce the desired effects varies from person to person depending on body size and degree of tolerance to caffeine. It takes less than an hour for caffeine to begin affecting the body and a mild dose wears off in three to four hours.
Many have wondered whether caffeine has any effects on our metabolism and so, I did a little research and here is my feedback: Caffeine excites us, in terms of forgetting that we are tired and not feeling sleepy. Naturally, every organism is unique, as any individual that it belongs to, hence caffeine affects us all in different ways. But for regular caffeine consumers, this should not occur as an issue, as our bodies are design to adjust to anything that we expose them to. In other words, provided we are regular coffee drinkers, our bodies have long adapted to it and caffeine would have no affect on our metabolism, whatsoever.
Types of Coffee
-Espresso: Simple black, intense coffee
-Americano: A single shot of espresso with about 7 ounces of hot water added to the mix
-Black coffee: A drip brew, percolated or French press style coffee served straight, with no milk
-Caffe Latte: Essentially, a single shot of espresso in steamed (not frothed) milk. The ratio of milk to coffee should be about 3:1, but you should be aware that latte in Italian means "milk", so be careful ordering one when in Italy
-Cafe au Lait: Similar to Caffe Latte, except that an au lait is made with brewed coffee instead of espresso
-Cafe Breva: A cappuccino made with half and half milk, instead of whole milk
-Cafe Macchiato: A shot of espresso with steamed milk added. The ratio of coffee to milk is approximately 4:1
-Cappuccino: Usually equal parts espresso, steamed milk, and frothed milk, often with cinnamon or flaked chocolate sprinkled on top
-Double Shot: Just as it sounds, this is two shots of espresso mixed in with the regular amount of additional ingredients
-Dry Cappuccino: A regular cappuccino, only with a smaller amount of foam, and no steamed milk at all.