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3 Things You Didn't Know About Iced Coffee

3 Things You Didn't Know About Iced Coffee

Once winter starts winding down and it starts to get warmer people start to switch their hot coffee to iced. But for some, iced coffee is more than just a summer trend... it's a must-have all year round!

So let's talk coffee, which one is better hot or iced? Do they have the same benefits? Well, some will argue that hot coffee is better for you than iced coffee. That’s because they think that it doesn’t have the same benefits as drinking a cup of hot coffee. 

But there is one type of iced coffee that has some surprising benefits…

Cold brew! 

I bet you are surprised as I am! I want to share everything I learned about cold brew and the health benefits it may have… Stick around because I’ll also be sharing my own delicious recipe!

Is Iced Coffee Good For You?

This question is tough to answer so please finish reading this before you start heading over to your favorite Starbucks or coffee shop to order an iced coffee with extra sweetener! 

Iced coffee like cold brew can be healthy, but something like a frappuccino isn't. It really depends on how you drink your coffee and what you add into it. It also depends on your health, any type of coffee might not be good for those that have stomach issues like acid reflux or GERD. 

Short answer, yes iced coffee can be good for you. Cold brew actually has some pretty impressive benefits, but before we dive into that let's talk about cold brew vs iced coffee. 

What's the difference between cold brew and iced coffee?

Not their ingredients, that's for sure! They're still made with the same delicious ingredient - ground coffee beans. It's the brewing process that sets them apart. They're brewed at different temperatures. Standard iced coffee is brewed with hot water like regular coffee, except you just let it cool down then pour over ice.  Or you can pour it directly over ice, but beware, this will leave your coffee tasting watered down. Cold brew is made by pouring room temperature water over coffee grounds. Which requires a longer amount to steep, anywhere between 12-24 hours. After letting it sit in the fridge for at least 12 hours filter out the grounds for a clean cup!

The process of making cold brew is much longer, but it results in containing the absolute best qualities of coffee - flavor and caffeine, with no bitterness. This is one of the reasons I suggest drinking it over regular iced coffee. Another reason is because of the change of chemical structure of coffee when it goes from hot to cold. There is an oxidation process that happens after whole bean coffee is roasted, over time this process causes the coffee to go stale. When the coffee is in liquid form it goes stale much faster. The accelerated oxidation process contributes to the poor taste found in normal iced coffee. 

Let's break it down

Iced coffee is...

  1. Brewed with hot water
  2. Bitter
  3. Tastes watered down
  4. Goes stale faster

Cold brew coffee is...

  1. Brewed with cold water
  2. Less bitter and acidic
  3. Has more caffeine (depending on how it's brewed)
  4. Has a better, rich taste

Impressive Benefits of Cold Brew

Besides the delicious taste, cold brew can have some pretty surprising health benefits..

May help boost metabolism

Research has shown that coffee increases your resting metabolic rate by 11%! [1] Cold brew, depending on how it's brewed, has as much caffeine as a normal cup of coffee does. The caffeine in cold brew can potentially increase the amount of calories you burn at rest. 

Easier on your stomach

Coffee is an acidic beverage that can trigger acid reflux, indigestion, and heartburn. This is why some people try to avoid drinking too much of it. Cold brew and hot coffee have similar acidity levels, around 5-6 on the pH scale. But some studies show that cold brew can actually be slightly less acidic than regular coffee, making it easier to digest. [2]

Another reason as to why it's easier to digest is the amount of crude polysaccharides. These carbs (chains of sugar molecules) can boost the immunity of your digestive system. It can protect your stomach against the effects of acidity in coffee.

May lower the risk of heart disease

Cold brew contains certain compounds that can help reduce the risk of heart disease. Those compounds are: caffeine, phenolic compounds, magnesium, trigonelline, quinides, and lignans. They are known to increase insulin sensitivity, lower blood pressure, and stabilize blood sugar. It also contains chlorogenic acids which acts as anti-inflammatory agents and as an antioxidant. [3]

Before you start drinking copious amounts of coffee, if you have uncontrolled high blood pressure then you should limit your caffeine intake because it can elevate the levels even more!

Other, more fun benefits are:

  1. It's delicious - tastes rich and smooth
  2. Refreshing
  3. Has more caffeine than regular iced coffee
  4. Easy to make

My Cold Brew Recipe

I hope this information has shown you that clearly cold brew is the superior coffee! Well it is to many, some still prefer their regular hot cup of coffee and there's nothing wrong with that 😌

Before I go, I want to share with you my favorite cold brew recipe. I'm a hot coffee type of girl, BUT I can still make a delicious iced cold brew coffee. 

Iulia's Cold Brew Recipe:

I use Hario MIZUDASHI Cold Brew Bottle. I got mine from Blue Bottle Coffee.

  1. Grab your cold brew bottle, make sure it’s clean.
  2. Get your roasted coffee beans (7-14 days old) and grind them extra coarse.
  3. Put your grinded coffee into the coffee filter of your cold brew bottle.
  4. Pour clean filtered room temperature water into your bottle with coffee.
  5. Close the bottle and put it in the fridge.
  6. Wait for 12+ hours.
  7. Take the bottle out of your fridge, then pour yourself a cup of fresh cold brew coffee.
  8. Add ice, milk, and sweetener of your choice (optional)
  9. Enjoy:)

Try it out and let me know what you think!! I have a feeling you're going to love it as much as I do... 😉

Sources

1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/2912010

2. https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-018-34392-w

3. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/cold-brew-coffee-benefits#section3