Hot coffee is BETTER for you than cold brew: It has higher levels of antioxidants thanks to the way it’s brewed

November 3, 2018  18:54

For devout hot coffee drinkers who can't stand cold brew: you have been vindicated.

Scientists have declared hot-brewed coffee is better for you than iced because it has higher levels of antioxidants.

After comparing the two, chemists at Philadelphia and Thomas Jefferson Universities say the quick heating-up process for hot coffee creates more total titratable acids, which help pump oxygen around the body.

The fact that cold brew is brewed over hours using room temperature water deprives it of that extra health kick.

What's more, the team found there is little merit to the widespread claims that cold brew is less acidic than an americano: in fact, their pH levels are almost identical.

The paper, published on Tuesday in the journal Scientific Reports, is the first ever to analyze the widely touted health benefits of the cold brew market, which grew 580 percent between 2011 and 2016.

It also offers fresh insight into why coffee is continually held up as healthy.

Time and time again, studies show coffee can do no wrong. Yes, too many cups can make a caffeine novice jittery, but according to scores of health organizations - including the American Heart Association - there is no limit to the benefits of a cup of Joe.

Last year, the AHA published a paper which found every extra cup further boosted heart health. Asked by how much is too much, the answer was: just keep drinking as much as you want until you feel like you should stop.

But the new research by chemistry professors - and coffee lovers - Niny Rao, PhD, and Megan Fuller, PhD suggests those turning to coffee for heart-healthy benefits should stick to a toasty brew.

Drs Rao and Fuller (partial to both cold and hot coffee) had been noticing more and more health claims made about cold brew.

The most ubiquitous claim is that cold brew is less acidic and therefore lowers your risk of gastrointestinal issues such as acid reflux and heartburn.

While the benefits of hot-brewed coffee are well-documented (from lowering diabetes and depression risk to lower the risk of some cancers), they found barely anything on no-heat coffees.

They sought to dig deeper.

First, they found nothing to support the claim that cold brews are lower in pH.

Both hot- and cold-brewed coffee oscillated between pHs of 4.85 and 5.13.

Next, they found the hot-brewed coffee method had more total titratable acids, which may be responsible for the hot cup's higher antioxidant levels.

'Coffee has a lot of antioxidants, if you drink it in moderation, research shows it can be pretty good for you,' Fuller said. 'We found the hot brew has more antioxidant capacity.'

In conclusion, Rao warned coffee drinkers that cold brew may not be a 'silver bullet' for their health.

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