NDSU Extension - Ramsey County


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It's Coffee Time

“It’s Coffee Time”


By, Sara Laite, RD, LRD

Extension Agent


With the fresh coat of snow on the ground this morning, I couldn’t wait to get a fresh cup of coffee brewed to enjoy on my morning commute.  Yes, I admit it, I do enjoy a cup (or two) of coffee each morning, but I know my limits.  Any coffee after noon, and I’m up all night!  Here are some interesting facts and research on this highly beloved drink.


Drinking moderate amounts of coffee (including decaf) has been linked to lower risk of cardiovascular disease, Type 2 diabetes, Parkinson's disease and some cancers.  Coffee also contains small amounts of some nutrients, including potassium, niacin and magnesium.  According to some research, coffee appears to improve cognitive function and decrease the risk of depression.


Adding fat free milk to your coffee is one way to be sure your daily calcium and vitamin D needs are met. If your diet does not include dairy, a fortified soy beverage is a calcium-rich alternative.


Are you a fan of boiled or espresso coffees?  High intake of unfiltered coffee has been associated with mild elevations in cholesterol levels.


How much is too much? According to the Association of Nutrition and Dietetics, it's wise to stick to no more than 3 to 4 cups per day. Certain groups, such as people with hypertension and the elderly, may be more susceptible to the negative effects of caffeine. Pregnant and breast-feeding women will want to limit intake to a maximum of 200 to 300 milligrams a day of caffeine (the amount in 2 to 3 cups of coffee).


Do you have a favorite roast?  Surprisingly, light roast coffee has a higher caffeine content than darker roasts.  The flavor of light roasts tend to be grainy, while the dark roasts tend to have a bitter, smoky or even burned taste.  Espresso is the caffeine-concentrated form of coffee and typically used to make cappuccino, Americano, mocha and latte coffee drinks.


Coffee beverages vary in calorie, caffeine and sugar content.  Be sure to read and compare Nutrition Facts labels and don’t be afraid to ask your coffee shop for a list of nutrition information.  For example, 16oz. of black coffee contains 5 calories and 0g sugar, whereas, a 16oz. white chocolate mocha may contain a whopping 520 calories and 64g sugar!


Check out our latest publication, Coffee Time! Exploring a Favorite Beverage (FN1894), on our website, https://www.ag.ndsu.edu/extension, for even more information! 


Here’s a recipe that will pair well with a nice, warm cup of your favorite coffee.

Blueberry Coffeecake

1 c. lemon low-fat yogurt

3 Tbsp. vegetable oil

1 egg

½ c. sugar

1 ½ c. flour

1 Tbsp. grated lemon peel

2 tsp. baking powder

¼ tsp. salt

1 ½ c. fresh or frozen blueberries

Heat oven to 375 F. Spray a 9- by 9- by 2-inch baking pan with nonfat cooking spray. Beat yogurt, oil, egg, and sugar in a large bowl. Stir in remaining ingredients except blueberries. Carefully stir in blueberries. Spread all ingredients in the pan. Bake about 35-40 minutes or until cake springs back when touched lightly in center. Cool 10 minutes. Serve warm or cool. Makes 8 servings. Each serving has 227 calories, 6g fat, 6g protein, 38g carbohydrate, 2g fiber, and 192mg sodium.


For more information on this and other nutrition related items, contact the Ramsey County Extension Office at 701-662-7027.  Website: https://www.ag.ndsu.edu/ramseycountyextension.  Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/NDSUExtRamsey/.


(Sara Laite is a Registered Dietitian and Nutrition Education Agent for the NDSU Extension in Ramsey County.)


Source: Coffee Time! Exploring a Favorite Beverage, NDSU Extension, 2018.

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