Why You Should Drink Organic Coffee
That magical cup of joe to kickstart your morning is what so many of us have ingrained into our daily routine. 64% of American adults currently consume coffee every day, and options for how you brew or take your coffee can be tailored exactly to your taste. Light roast vs dark roast, french press or drip, the option of added cream or sugar, etc. The list goes on.
While you may not have thought about what's in your cup, it certainly matters. The average American drinks 3.1 cups of coffee per day. Over the course of a year, that's 1,131 cups of coffee. Considering coffee is such a beloved beverage, we should pay more attention to how the coffee we purchase and consume has been sourced as well as produced.
In general it is known that coffee is one of the most heavily sprayed crops in the world. It is also the second most commonly traded commodity in the world. Since it is such a widely sought after product, the industry does whatever it can to cut costs in its crop treatment, roasting process and storage practices. This means that you need to be picky about your coffee.
It wasn't until about a year ago when I listened to the Heal Thy Self podcast by naturopath Dr. Christian Gonzales (Dr. G) on coffee that I made the switch to organic. He mentioned some crucial facts about what's in coffee like the one's above and lead, mycotoxins, pesticides and more.
During the farming process, coffee plants are sprayed with a variety of pesticides like fungicides, insecticides, herbicides and synthetic fertilizers. It is said that for every acre, 250 pounds of agricultural chemicals are used.
While many studies have deemed conventional coffee acceptable for consumption, the overall results have not been conclusive. Essentially studies say that during the roasting process most of the chemicals and pesticides are "burned" off. 85-90% to be exact. Although some people think that instead of being "burned" off, they are actually being cooked into the coffee itself. However, even if these studies are accurate, that still leaves 10-15% of them in your cup.
Considering the amount of coffee we consume regularly, that 10-15% of remaining chemicals makes a difference. Commonly used pesticides have been linked to cancers, birth defects, and learning disabilities.
In addition, the roasting process does not kill mold, like mycotoxins. These guys are released during improper processing. 50-100% of those mold toxins survive!
The effects of nonorganic coffee go beyond the end product that you reach for each morning. The farmers, employees and local communities are exposed to those chemicals in the air and ones that get into the local water sources, effecting their health and livelihood. Not to mention the fact that the coffee industry has a slew of ethics violations when it comes to paying workers fairly and exploiting 3rd world countries for profit.
How Organic is Different
What's so great about organic coffee beans?
Drinking organic means that 95% of the beans have NOT been sprayed with pesticides and don't have any sewer sludge or radiation included (nice bonus). Instead, they use organic fertilizers.
To boot, most organic coffee sustains soil fertility because it is grown in lush forested areas.
Buying organic coffee has other perks, besides eliminating at least one source of food that is not harmful to your health:
Often the taste and quality is better than conventional coffee
You're supporting an ethical form of agriculture that inherently diminishes the negative health effects harsh chemicals have on their workers
You're not contributing to the pollution to the environment, like groundwater contamination, and plant and animal species degradation
Something to remember as noted by Dr. G in his podcast is that the USDA Organic label does NOT mean it is devoid of heavy metals...something that I hope some day will be going into the label or in a perfect world, the coffee brands would be transparent about those levels through their packaging or website.
One of those brands who happens to provide that transparency is Purity Coffee.
If you can get your hands on a brand like Purity coffee, that's great. However, do what you can and start simple by buying organic. Oftentimes you can find organic beans or ground coffee in bulk at big-box stores like Costco for a cost effective price.
I buy whole organic dark roast beans, grind them ahead of time and store them in a sealed mason jar. I love my ritual I do (almost) every day of making my french pressed coffee in the morning and knowing that it is one less cause for toxins in my day.
Coffee is known for its health benefits like antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties. According to the Mayo Clinic, it has also been proven to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, Parkinson's disease and liver disease.
So, why not enjoy all the health benefits in full and consume organic coffee? Not only will you be consuming less pesticides, but you'll be helping the planet along the way.