Decaf or Regular Coffee, Which is Healthier?


Who doesn’t love coffee? It has been a favored drink for centuries and can be enjoyed with adults and youth alike. Coffee can be had hot, cold, with whipped cream, milk, sugar or even with turmeric. A new fad is the bulletproof coffee, Mushroom coffee and the coffee luwak. Have you tried these?

Yet coffee has had a bad reputation over the years for being linked to a variety of disease from heart disease, stomach ulcers, heartburn and more. Decaf coffee offers the more healthier alternative with most of the caffeine content reduced to 97%. Yet does if fulfil the promise of being healthier and free of risk?


Processing coffee is quite the process, from picking the cherries to enjoying a hot cup of coffee. The first step is to separate the cherries from the beans, then fermenting the slimy layer of the beans by soaking in water for 2 days. After the slimy layer is gone, it’s time to peel away the skin from the beans itself. Coffee beans are then dried in the sun to prevent mold at storage. Voila! All that needs to be done is roast, grind and mix the coffee according to preference.

Decaf coffee would need a little more processing, where it would be soaked in water then added with carbon to remove the caffeine from the coffee beans.

Depending on the processing, decaf tends to have a weaker bitter taste and a bit of color change. Not all of the caffeine has been removed during the process, regardless it’s much lower by 97% from the original caffeine content within each cup of coffee.

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The difference can be quite significant in which regular coffee can have 0-7 mg of caffeine per cup while decaf contains 3 mg. Despite the removal of caffeine, the nutritional content should stays the same.

Effects of Decaf

Both decaf and regular coffee has their fair share of benefits. However the removal of caffeine can both add and remove some of its health effects to the body.

Find out what the benefits are:

  1. Lowers risk of Diabetes, Alzheimer, Parkinson’s and Dementia

In this case, both regular and decaf coffee are associated to lower the risk of diabetes. Components such as lignans and chlorogenic acid help with the glucose in our body as well as creating antioxidants in the body. Magnesium contained in the coffee are linked to decreased risk for diabetes and improved cardiovascular and brain function.

2. Cardiovascular health

Endothelial function is important to cardiovascular health. The reason for its importance is to help blood flow vasodilation and vasoconstriction which is used to deliver oxygen and blood throughout the body. A dysfunctional system can result the opposite in which the heart could contract disease. In this case, regular coffee has more benefits due to its caffeine content.

3. Gout

Even with gout that predominantly affects men more than women, coffee can significantly reduce the chances or rheumatism and arthritis compared to non-coffee drinkers.

4. Liver

Despite regular coffee being linked to effects of heartburn, decaf coffee is more known to help the liver. Oils, coffee diterpenes like cafestol and kahweol create a protective film against aflatoxin which is known to negatively affect the liver. On the other hand, cafestol and kahweol oils encourage the production of antioxidants called glutathione which can encourage liver function and detoxification paths in the body.

5. Brain Function

Amongst all parts of the body, the brain is something that would gain the most benefit from drinking decaf. It has been incurred in a controlled research that rats that drink coffee displayed much better psychomotor and much better working memory due to the polyphenols in the body.

6. Colorectal, Live, Breast and Endometrial Cancer

Caffeine, flavonoids, lignans, and other polyphenols found in roasted coffee been shown to increase energy expenditure, inhibit cellular damage, regulate genes involved in DNA repair, have anti-inflammatory properties and more. All of these contribute significantly to one’s body where risks of colorectal, liver, breast and endometrial cancer are significantly reduced. A research by the American Cancer Society has confirmed this fact where people who regularly drink coffee have a reduced risk of various types of cancer. 

Coffee is a beloved drink by all for its ability to sharpen the mind and increase concentration. Drinking a substantial amount can be very beneficial to the body, although drinking too much is known to create negative side effects to the body. Decaf coffee may have less caffeine although it also has its fair share of benefits with reduced risk. All in all, decaf coffee comes with reduced risk but with roughly the same amount of benefits offered by regular coffee.

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Based on the benefits, what kind of coffee would your prefer? Decaf or regular? Share your answer with the comments below!