Is coffee fattening? If you have ever asked yourself this age-old question, perhaps while enjoying a cup of your favourite beverage, know that it is perfectly normal. We, who know about coffee, are the first to have thought about it: after all, we are talking about something so good that it can only be bad for your figure, right?
But what if we told you that drinking coffee not only doesn’t affect your fitness, instead it actually allows you to improve it? The truth is that, in order to definitively resolve any doubts about this, it is of paramount importance to know the nutritional values of coffee and to understand precisely what effect caffeine has on our organism: two questions that we will address in detail in this article.
Is coffee fattening or slimming?
To know precisely whether a particular food (or drink, in this case) is fattening, one needs to know its nutritional values. In order to calculate them, we have taken the classic cup of espresso into consideration:
- Calories = 1;
- Protein = 0.07 g;
- Carbohydrates = 0 g;
- Sugars = 0 g;
- Fat = 0.11 g;
- Monounsaturated = 0 g;
- Polyunsaturated fat = 0.054;
- Cholesterol = 0 mg;
- Fibre = 0 g;
- Sodium = 8 mg;
- Potassium = 68 mg.
As you can see for yourself, the nutritional element with the highest value is potassium, which is certainly not fattening. For the rest, we are talking about very low values and, in some cases, almost non-existent. This is enough to make you realise that coffee is definitely not capable of making you fat, unless you are used to sweetening it with sugar.
The problem, in fact, is that the values indicated refer exclusively to bitter coffee, drunk as it is. If, unfortunately for you, you belong to the category of sweet coffee lovers, then we must disappoint you by pointing out that just one teaspoon of sugar already contains 16 calories.
We coffee connoisseurs are well aware of the exquisite taste of sweetened coffee, but we are also aware of the fact that even one teaspoon of sugar is enough to turn our favourite beverage into a ‘danger’ for fitness. In contrast, drunk bitter coffee has no fattening effect on your body, to the extent that many people have wondered whether it can be considered a diet drink. To answer this question, however, it is imperative to know what effects caffeine has on our metabolism.
Can you lose weight with coffee?
Caffeine is one of the world’s most popular nerve agents. It has tonic properties, which is why it works by improving the physical and mental efficiency of those who take it.
The feeling of strength and sprint that a cup of coffee gives is precisely linked to the presence of this substance. Its effects have been known for many years and the consumption of caffeine has always been associated with waking up and the desire to kick-start the day.
Its energising action is also recognised by sportsmen and women, so much so that many athletes use it before starting training. Caffeine is in fact a stimulant that improves performance and reflexes as it maintains motivation and activates the neuromuscular system.
What is the action of caffeine on slimming?
Caffeine helps us lose weight thanks to two mechanisms it triggers in our bodies:
- Stimulates the production and release of catecholamines, hormones that accelerate metabolism;
- Acts on localised fat and promotes its displacement.
These actions, combined with a calorie-restricted diet and physical activity, are really effective on body weight loss. Which proves that there is a real connection between coffee intake and weight loss, provided, of course, that you do not overdo it.
Coffee yes, but with no exaggeration, otherwise it has the opposite effect
You know that well-known saying that ‘enough is as good as a feast’? This is a maxim that you should definitely keep in mind when drinking coffee as well. While you are no doubt aware of the problems caused by an excess of caffeine (which, apart from coffee, is also contained in many other foods!), what will surprise you is the fact that too much coffee can be bad for your figure.
Yes, it is true: drinking too much coffee makes you fat, and the reason is very simple. When taken in large quantities, caffeine increases heart and respiratory rate: two symptoms that, in many cases, also result in increased nervousness. This emotion triggers the release of cortisol, also known as the ‘stress hormone’, the side effects of which include weight gain, especially in the area around the waist.
It goes without saying that to get to these levels, you would literally have to ‘live on coffee’. Indeed, in itself, this drink is not at all bad for you, nor does it make you fat, provided of course that you keep your consumption under control.
The ideal, in fact, would be to never exceed 300 milligrams of caffeine per day, notwithstanding the fact that, as we have already explained to you, caffeine is also contained in foods such as chocolate or in fizzy drinks such as coca cola. Which means, simply put, that the problem is not so much the abuse of coffee, but the abuse of foods and drinks that, in general, contain caffeine.
Is there such a thing as a coffee diet?
Believe it or not, there is a real ‘coffee diet’, which involves enjoying this drink in conjunction with other foods as part of a dietary regime that will help you lose weight.
Everything, in fact, starts with the cup of coffee you drink in the morning which, needless to say, must be sugar-free. Ideally, you should precede it with a glass of still water. Along with coffee, you can also eat a couple of rusks with a little honey, accompanied by a seasonal fruit.
The ideal lunch consists instead of a dish of brown rice with carrots and courgettes, accompanied by some grilled vegetables seasoned with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and herbs to taste. For dinner, finally, you should opt for a baked sea bream with a side dish of vegetables, steamed of course.
Last but not least, you can once again indulge in your beloved cup of coffee, again without sugar, perhaps accompanied by a seasonal fruit, some almonds or nuts.
As you can see, this is a fairly restrictive diet that, far from being exclusively coffee-based, is based on the consumption of a number of healthy and dietary foods, such as the ones we have mentioned. That said, precisely because we know about coffee and not medicine, our advice is still to discuss any diet with your doctor.
Our advice is simple and should never be taken as a medical diagnosis and, before taking any action, the best thing you can do is to speak to a medical expert with confidence. Not to mention the fact that, if you aspire to a healthy, fit physique, diet alone is not enough and it is essential to supplement it with a healthy, consistent workout.
Coffee and training go hand in hand
One of the main benefits of coffee is that it gives you a real boost of energy, which is exactly what you need before starting a workout. Drinking a cup of your favourite beverage before heading to the gym or going for a run will help you feel more motivated and less tired, resulting in more commitment to your workout and brilliant results.
But that’s not all. Coffee is also optimal when training is over, as it allows you to replenish lost minerals while restoring glycogen levels: a very important energy reserve that has a direct bearing on your metabolism.
In general, drinking a cup of coffee after a particularly strenuous workout helps you regain your energy, and can also be an excellent form of reward. That is, of course, as long as the coffee is really good, even without sugar – something you can easily achieve by preparing it with the right coffee machine!
If there is one thing we are firmly convinced of, it is the fact that if you want to drink good coffee, you have to do it with the right machine. To be sure of enjoying the full taste of your favourite beverage, you need to be able to count on a good ally, which in this case means a coffee machine worthy of the name.
Our lever machines not only have the great merit of retaining all the nutritional principles of coffee, but also of allowing you to savour it in all its exquisite goodness, guaranteeing an intense and all-encompassing taste. What you have to do, therefore, is consult our extensive catalogue and choose the right coffee machine for you. Want to bet that your diet and workout will suddenly be much more enjoyable?