Coffee for generations has been one of the most popular beverages across the world. For millions of people across the world, coffee is considered indispensable as the first beverage after a good night's sleep. It is known to make a person active and many people consume coffee if they have some additional work to do during the night.
This is because the caffeine in coffee has certain chemicals and ingredients that keep the brain alert. It also is known to increase the level of metabolism in a person. However, there are some fears and controversies surrounding coffee. Many people have a common question to ask about coffee and they say does coffee weaken bones? Is this fear real or is it hype without too much substance in it?
Let us try and find answers to the question.
Coffee and calcium
There are many people who fear that caffeine has a negative impact on the bones because it could impair calcium absorption. These people argue that caffeine could bring down the efficiency of calcium absorption by the body. When we add milk to any caffeinated beverage, it may not have the same positive impact as far as bone health is concerned.
There is no doubt that many users consume significant amounts of milk daily and it is considered to be a good source of calcium for the body. Hence, the concern expressed by many people regarding the ability of coffee to weaken bones is justified. But what is the actual fact and does coffee negatively impact the absorption of this important mineral by the body? Let us try and find answers for the same.
It May Not Be The Case
Quite a bit of research has been done to find out the effect of coffee on our body and the findings do have a few things positive to show. The studies do not suggest any reason to believe that caffeine has a negative impact as far as calcium absorption is concerned. But there could be a slight impact for those heavy coffee drinkers who consume around four or more cups of coffee per day.
Even this negative impact can be countered if they just add around two to three tablespoons of milk to their coffee.
Never Depend on One Source of Calcium
Morning latte provides around 150 mg of calcium for thousands of people in the country. While this certainly is good news, experts have a word of advice to offer. It may not be ideal to depend on a single source of calcium. It would be a good idea to mix low-fat yogurt with fruit with a skim latte.
This could be a good way to begin your morning. You also could look at other important and rich sources of calcium. Tofu is one such source and having tofu salad for lunch would not be a bad idea. You also could make salmon and spinach a part of your daily food habit because these two food items are known to be a rich source of calcium.
They are also referred to as nutrient-dense foods and therefore at the end of the day, you will be able to get high quality and easily absorbable calcium. While there is nothing wrong with drinking that morning cup of coffee with milk, it would be sensible to follow this up with another source of calcium for the entire day.
Wrong To Pin The Blame on Coffee
Frankly speaking, there is no scientific evidence to prove that there is a direct relation between coffee and lack of calcium absorption. Yes, there are some people who are advised not to have caffeine or coffee because of pregnancy and other medical conditions.
However, there is hardly any scientific basis for staying away from coffee just because it could negatively impact the strength and quality of bones and joints. Dozens of studies have been done on the subject and it has been found that people suffering from bone and joint problems have had nothing much to do with regular drinking of coffee or other caffeinated drinks.
Limiting The Intake is Important
However, there is a word of caution here. Anything that is taken in moderation is good for health and if the prescribed safety limit is breached then you could have problems. The same applies to those who are trying to find the answer to the question does coffee weaken bones. One or two cups of coffee are quite good but those who drink four cups of coffee and above have reasons to be worried.
This is considered to be on the higher side. But even such high intake of coffee may result in a slight reduction of bone density, but it would be wrong to assume that those who drink four cups of coffee and more would be at a higher risk of joint disease, bone fracture, osteoporosis and other such problems related to the bone and joints.
Coffee in Limited Quantities Has Its Own Advantages
In fact, when coffee is taken in limited quantities may do more good than bad for our health. It could reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes and improve the absorption of insulin by the body. Additionally, it also has certain benefits as far as the neurological functions are concerned. It could help elderly people and reduce the risk of Alzheimer's disease quite significantly. Limited and controlled intake of coffee may also improve the overall metabolism of the body and help a person to remain active.
However, depending on milk and latte alone as the single source of calcium may not be the right way forward. There are other important and proven sources of calcium like fruits, green leafy vegetables, Tofu, and other such food items. You must use them on a daily basis and as mentioned above, moderation is the name of the game as far as caffeinated drinks are concerned.
There is not much evidence that might positively answer the question does coffee weaken bones. It may not also significantly impact bone mass density or increase the risk of fractures and other such problems as far as bones are concerned. On the other hand, the benefits of moderate intake of coffee are much more compared to the non-existent and unproven risk of depletion of calcium reserves in our body.
To cite an example, coffee is known to have proven anti-inflammatory properties and it has many mechanisms to make this possible. In fact, research has shown us that any substance that reduces inflammation also automatically reduces the risk of osteoporosis.