Different kinds of coffee not only taste differently but have various effects on our body. The four main coffee roasts are light, medium, medium-dark and dark and they all offer contrasting health benefits, so depending on what your body needs, the coffee you are consuming could be helping or harming you.
There isn’t really much standardization in the coffee industry when it comes to roast, the wide range of coffee variety offers all sorts of blends and names, but usually it is quite easy to find the level of roasting. In this blog post we’ll be comparing light and dark roast, to get a clear understanding of the main differences.
When looking at the light roast beans, for example, the number of cholesterol-raising compounds there may be two times higher than in the very dark roast. Although that means that darker is the better alternative in this case, the good news is that if you use paper filter for any kind of roast, it will destroy around 95% of such compounds.
Dark roast can also destroy up to 99.8% of the pesticides in coffee, and more than 90% of an ochratoxin, which is a powerful kidney toxin found in many foods that can get mouldy. On the other hand, that same dark roast may destroy about 90% of the chlorogenic acids in coffee, which are antioxidative and anti-inflammatory phytonutrients.
So far, the only conclusion we can make is that both light and dark roast offer health benefits, but when it comes to weight loss, research suggests that dark roast is more beneficial. In overweight study subjects, they ended up about six pounds lighter drinking dark roast coffee compared to light roast coffee; more than a pound a week lost just drinking a different type of coffee, roasted from the same batch of green coffee beans.
Having said that, however, it’s well known that coffee intake is often related to stomach pain and heartburn, so it’s important to look at what effect do different roasts have on these symptoms. Research shows that the darker the roast, the longer it takes for the stomach to restore its normal pH level. Turns out, however, that these findings are in no way related to the physical symptoms people with sensitive stomach are experiencing as a result of coffee intake, thus lighter coffee does not help stomach pain and heartburn.
All in all, the pros and cons of coffee are just as complex as its taste. Its best if you consider the benefits of the different coffee types and not only the flavour, or even consider avoiding it if you are experiencing any problems when drinking it.