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Episode 17: “Wine of the Bean”
What do 90% of nerds have in common? COFFEE!! True nerds love coffee and research. As I am a nerd, what could be more fitting than researching coffee? This week we learn a bit about coffee and make fun of the strange history and haters of the “Wine of the Bean.”
Fun Coffee Facts / History
- Coffee beans are actually the pit of a berry.
Legend has it that coffee was discovered by Ethiopian goat herders in the 9th century who found that their goats would “dance” after eating the berries.
Coffee comes from an Arabic phrase that means “wine of the bean”
- Caffeine, and by extension coffee, is psychoactive stimulant and in extremely high doses can cause hallucinations and death.
- But it would take drinking 100 standard cups of coffee in one sitting to actually die.
- 1.4 billion cups of coffee are consumed every day
- Most expensive Starbucks coffee is a 16 shot espresso which will set you back about $24.
- Most expensive coffee in the world comes from the feces of a Sumatran wild cat. While digesting the berries, the pits are fermented. The collected beans cost as much as $600 per lb.
- Claiming to be the strongest coffee in the world, Death Wish Coffee boasts 660 mg of caffeine per 12 oz cup.
- By comparison a standard cup of coffee contains from 100-150 mg of caffeine
- A single shot espresso is between 80-120mg
- Tea 40 mg
- Average chocolate bar has between 20-60 mg caffeine
- Standard 12 oz cola has from 40-60 mg
(For reference the lethal amount is approximately 10,000 mg for the average adult)
Coffee’s Bad Rap
- For years coffee has been blamed for everything from hypertension and heart disease to birth defects and cancer.
- Coffee houses were actually banned in England in the late 1600’s because the king thought that’s where people were plotting against him.
- Italian priests in the 16th century labeled coffee as satanic until Pope Clement VIII declared it delicious and had it baptised. (Hence all the Italian coffee houses)
Fortunately for all of us coffee lovers, they were all wrong…
- Modern research has found no concrete proof that drinking coffee has any long term negative effects and has actually disproven almost all previous accusations.
- Long term moderate (2-4 cups a day) coffee consumption has been shown to reduce the risk of:
- Some forms of Cancer
- Cirrhosis of the liver
- Asthma attacks
- Parkinson’s Disease
- Alzheimer’s Disease
- Regular heavy coffee consumption has actually been shown to reduce blood pressure and help strengthen the heart.
- Coffee actually contains 4X the cancer fighting antioxidants as a cup of green tea.