Some of us have rather complex relationships with coffee – some people need at least two cups to be able to function in the mornings whilst others will never touch the stuff.
But when it comes to weight loss, coffee can really affect it — and there are two distinctly different theories on this. So we’ve decided to weigh up the pros and cons of this very popular drink!
The pros of coffee for weight loss!
1. It increases your body temperature
Some say that one of the reasons that coffee can boost weight loss is due to its effect of increasing your body temperature. A higher body temperature causes your metabolism to work harder, thus speeding up the time it takes your body to process fat and calories.
2. It increases your metabolism
Other specialists believe this however, there are many other foods that can speed up your metabolism that will not cause any side effects in the same way that caffeine might.
3. It accelerates your body’s fat distribution
Other recent studies suggest that coffee can accelerate your body’s fat distribution, where the fat in your body is broken down and dispersed, meaning that the coffee could help your body to process fat more easily.
4. It suppresses your appetite
Some people use coffee for weight loss because it’s been linked to suppressing your appetite, meaning that if you have a cup of coffee mid-morning, you could steer clear of snacks until it’s time for lunch.
And the coffee and weight loss cons…
1. It can make you feel edgy and wired
Because it’s a stimulant, it can make you feel buzzed (and not in the good way) when you would rather feel calm and in control. This edgy feeling can mean that you reach for the snack cupboard. Too much can also cause lethargy, irritability and grumpiness.
2. It can play havoc with your blood sugar
You may not know this, but the body actually goes into shock response when you drink coffee, and this shock response involves the release of sugar into the blood ready to be used as fuel by the muscles before a fight or flight response. Because no such fight or flight response will happen nowadays, instead you are stuck with being on edge for a couple of hours before sugar cravings kick in – which will again have you reaching for the snack cupboard instead of sticking to your weight loss meal plan.
3. It is often linked to situations that involve eating
For example, cafes offer all sorts of cakes, biscuits and bars and many people will pick up such a snack when they pick up their coffee. Weight loss is going to be much harder if you’re tempted by these sorts of snacks every time you grab a cuppa. Coffee is also often served up with fast-food breakfasts, and because of this, you could find yourself craving these types of foods when you drink coffee – weight loss efforts thwarted again!
4. It can cause cravings
Despite the fact that it may suppress the appetite in the short run, most people find that coffee causes more cravings over the course of the day than it does suppress them.
5. There are healthier hot drink alternatives
For a healthier hot drink that will not cause spikes in your blood sugar and thus cravings, try herbal fruit tea or green tea. Peppermint tea is also a good alternative to coffee when losing weight, as is low-calorie hot chocolate (pictured above).
So can I drink coffee when losing weight?
Our advice is to take a balanced approach and although it is a stimulant and can bring on sugar cravings, one a day shouldn’t hurt and if you need one have a coffee. Weight loss is still realistic when you drink the occasional cup, especially if you don’t have the creamy versions. Also remember if you are breastfeeding, too much caffeine can make your baby irritable and not able to sleep.
Looking for a coffee alternative? Check out these five energy boosting drinks that aren’t coffee.
Join the 28 Day Weight Loss Challenge!
All the coffee lovers will be pleased to know that on our Challenge we do allow a latte or two!
With more than 4,000 delicious (and healthy) recipes, 350 exercises & 24/7 support – the 28 Day Weight Loss Challenge is designed (and proven) to help busy mums like you lose weight! Coffee drinking mums can achieve their weight loss goals too! To learn more about our challenge OR to join – click here.
Weight loss coffee smoothies
To support your weight loss, The Healthy Mummy also has a range of delicious and good-for-you smoothies (including a coffee flavour)!
Our smoothie range offers an excellent source of essential vitamins, minerals, nutrients & important antioxidants. It does not contain any weight loss accelerants, caffeine, gluten and is dairy free. It is also a non Genetically Modified product!