Your morning coffee for cholesterol-lowering efforts may not go together. Your local coffee shop can prepare your cup of Joe in two distinct ways. Let’s find out if coffee good for cholesterol and whether you should skip filtered or unfiltered coffee.
Your coffee can be filtered or unfiltered, and the way your coffee is prepared could play a role in the coffee and cholesterol connection.
Below you will find out whether the coffee that you drink raises your cholesterol or not. Don’t be surprised however that in the end, you may find an answer that satisfies your need for low cholesterol, but also your taste for coffee. Find it all below.
Filtered & Unfiltered Coffee
If you’re wondering about the difference between the two, then filtered coffee is brewed by using a paper filter that sifts through oils, certain coffee components, and coffee bean particles. Meanwhile, unfiltered coffee uses a metal filter or no filter at all, so we consume oils, components, and other small particles.
If you order a typical cup of coffee you are likely ordering a filtered cup of coffee. The attendant behind the counter will brew your coffee through a filter, which is typically made of paper.
You could order an unfiltered cup of coffee, which includes espresso, Turkish coffees, and French press coffees. To prepare your unfiltered cup of coffee, the attendant will boil your coffee instead of filtering it.
Research studies have uncovered important health benefits linked to coffee and in particular caffeine. Some studies have delivered evidence that drinking coffee may help prevent serious diseases such as adult-onset diabetes, Parkinson’s disease, and certain cancers.
Yet, researchers draw a different conclusion when they look at the relationship between coffee and cholesterol.
Coffee and Cholesterol – The Scientific Findings
A study performed in 2007 at Baylor College of Medicine revealed that the diterpenes, cafestol, and kahweol, found only in coffee beans, raise levels of LDL “bad” cholesterol. (1)
Your cholesterol profile is made up of different components: LDL cholesterol, HDL cholesterol, total cholesterol, and triglycerides. Your doctor wants your level of LDL cholesterol, total cholesterol, and triglycerides to be low and your level of HDL cholesterol to be high.
This study links the diterpenes in coffee and cholesterol together in a way that is deleterious to your health. However, the way your drink your coffee may alter this finding.
If you choose a cup of filtered coffee, the properties in the paper coffee filter may bind to the harmful compounds and remove much of the cafestol and kahweol from the coffee. Your cup of unfiltered coffee (expresso, Turkish coffees, and French press coffees) does not remove these substances and you end up drinking them.
Coffee and Cholesterol – The Bottom Line
Researchers need to perform more studies to conclusively determine if coffee consumption leads to heart disease. However, the two diterpenes, cafestol, and kahweol, found mainly in unfiltered coffees have been found to raise LDL “bad” cholesterol.
One of the main issues is that people during research drank 8 cups of coffee per day. That is too much on any level.
So on one side the bottom line when discussing coffee and cholesterol is that you may be better off skipping the unfiltered coffee.
On the other hand, however, if you drink one or two cups a day, you may squeeze in a real & unfiltered coffee.
One thing is for certain, your heart is worth protecting. You can take an active role in your heart health and learn ways to lower your cholesterol naturally from this free report: Cholesterol Lowering Secrets.
References:(1) Wikipedia (2011). Health effects of coffee. Retrieved from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Health_effects_of_coffee