Remember: Even With Coffee, Knowledge Is Power
Coffee may help you wake up. It may help you to think clearly when you haven’t had enough rest. It may do a great many things to improve your retention of knowledge. But how much do you really know about coffee?
Here are ten quick things that you may not have known about coffee before now – get ready to test your knowledge of the world’s most popular beverage berry!
1 – Coffee Beans Aren’t Beans
That’s right. Coffee “beans” are actually the pits from a larger fruit called a coffee cherry, which is actually a berry, and not actually a cherry, either.
2 – Coffee Was Discovered by Goats
The legend goes that an Ethiopian shepherd noticed that his goats “danced” after ingesting the berries from particular bushes. And the rest, as they say, is coffee history.
3 – Coffee Has Been Linked to Longevity
Some studies have shown that coffee drinkers live longer than those who do not drink coffee on a regular basis.
4 – Coffee Will Only Grow in Certain Latitudes
It’s called the coffee belt and it runs right around the world on either side of the equator. Remember: part of the price of coffee is determined by the fact that the plants will only thrive under certain conditions.
5 – Coffee Helps You Wake Up Before the Caffeine Hits Your Brain
It takes ten minutes for your body to process the caffeine in a cup of coffee. But you may have noticed that just smelling the beans and the aroma of the brewing pot helps you to feel more alert first thing in the morning. That’s because the volatile oils in coffee actually help to wake you up just by inhaling them.
6 – Coffee Has Been Shown to Help Fight Off Dementia
Not only does caffeine help you maintain alertness and overcome the cognitive deficit (stupidity) associated with lack of sleep, but when consumed over the course of a lifetime, coffee can also help ward off Alzheimer’s Disease and other forms of dementia.
7 – Coffee and Liquor Go Together in More Than One Way
Everyone loves a good Spanish (Irish, Mexican, etc.) coffee. But, did you know that consuming at least four cups of coffee per day can actually help prevent cirrhosis of the liver?
8 – Coffee Became America’s Beverage Because of Taxes on Tea
You may have heard of the Boston Tea Party; Patriots had to get their caffeine from somewhere after that happened, because the tea was all gone. In fact, it was considered patriotic to drink coffee during the Revolutionary War.
9 – Coffee Is the World’s Second-Most Highly Traded Commodity
Just like your body may need coffee to fuel your morning, your car needs oil to burn as gasoline. And coffee is second only to oil in terms of volume on the world commodity market.
10 – The World’s Most Expensive Coffee Comes From…
Poop. There, we said it. The world’s most expensive coffees are made by feeding coffee cherries to either civet cats (a mongoose-like Southeast Asian mammal), or to Asian elephants, and then sifting the “processed” coffee beans out of their feces.
Supposedly, the acid of the animal’s digestive system mellows the flavor of the coffee, resulting in a brew that can cost as much as fifty dollars a cup.
Coffee Is a Many Splendored Thing
There you have it—ten things you may not have known about coffee when you started reading this. Hopefully you learned something, and with any luck, you’re ready to sit down and enjoy another cup of your favorite brew!