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Last Updated on January 17, 2018

Top 5 Health Benefits Of Drinking Espresso

Top 5 Health Benefits Of Drinking Espresso

Everyone knows that drinking coffee will give you that nice little caffeine boost. A shot of espresso is particularly well known for this, but what tends to be lesser well known is the fact that espresso offers several other benefits.

If you needed another reason to drink espresso, we’ve got just the list for you. This list covers the top five health benefits of drinking espresso, from enjoying improved memory functions to helping you shed a few pounds.

1. It enhances long-term memory

Mastering the art of pouring the perfect espresso shot is worth it when you consider that by drinking the right amount of caffeine, you can improve your long-term memory.

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Neuro-scientist Michael Yassa, from the University of California, conducted a study which found that drinking the equivalent of two espressos enhanced the process of memory consolidation. This process, in turn, improved long-term memory among the subjects.

Stick to the recommended amount if you want to see improvements since the study did not find any benefits for those who consumed more or less than two cups.

2. It increases attention

Many people start off their day with a shot of espresso, and this comes as no surprise. Caffeine has been found to reduce symptoms of fatigue, while also improving sustained attention and vigilance. These effects are thought to occur thanks to a neuro-chemical interaction.

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Coffee maintains a greater dopamine concentration, particularly in the areas of the brain that are linked to attention. Keep in mind that the benefits tend to be short-term, and you want to avoid overdoing it. Too much caffeine can make you feel jittery, making it far harder to concentrate.

3. It can help you lose weight

What sets espresso apart from some of the other beverages found at coffee shops, is that it is low-calorie. It only contains about three calories per ounce, assuming you’re not adding any sugar or cream.

But, besides being low-calorie, it can also help to improve your exercise performance. A study published in the Medicine and Science in Sports Journal found that caffeine made workouts appear less strenuous, by lowering the perceived level of exertion by over 5%.

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Besides making exercise seem easier, coffee also reduces the level of perceived muscle pain which occurs when doing exercises. Ingesting a dose of caffeine equivalent to two or three cups of coffee an hour before 30 minutes of workout reduces muscle pain, allowing you to push yourself a little bit harder.

4. It reduces the risk of a stroke

In a Swedish study conducted by Susanna Larsson, researchers found that drinking at least one cup of coffee a day can lessen the risk of suffering from a stroke. This result is thought to be due to the antioxidant properties of coffee.

The study concentrated on a group of women over a 10-year period. They concluded that drinking one or more cups of coffee a day reduced your chances of suffering from a stroke by 25%. Another study found similar results in male smokers, whose risk was reduced by 21% with eight or more cups of coffee a day.

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5. It lowers your risk of diabetes

In a study led by Harvard School of Public Health, researchers found that higher coffee consumption is linked to a lower risk of type 2 diabetes. The study analyzed caffeine consumption in men and women over a four-year period.

It concluded that those who increased their daily coffee consumption by more than one cup lowered their risk of type 2 diabetes by 11%. Of course, drinking more coffee is just one factor that can influence diabetes risk, so you still want to be physically active and watch your weight.

Espressos provide several health benefits, so you don’t have to feel so guilty about your caffeine addiction. Even if you’re not the biggest fan of a regular espresso, there are many different coffee serving styles out there, so you’ll be sure to find something that meets your taste.

Featured photo credit: pixabay.com via pixabay.com

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Last Updated on November 20, 2018

10 Reasons Why New Year’s Resolutions Fail

10 Reasons Why New Year’s Resolutions Fail

A new year beautifully symbolizes a new chapter opening in the book that is your life. But while so many people like you aspire to achieve ambitious goals, only 12% of you will ever experience the taste of victory. Sound bad? It is. 156 million people (that’s 156,000,000) will probably give up on their resolution before you can say “confetti.” Keep on reading to learn why New Year’s resolutions fail (and how to succeed).

Note: Since losing weight is the most common New Year’s resolution, I chose to focus on weight loss (but these principles can be applied to just about any goal you think of — make it work for you!).

1. You’re treating a marathon like a sprint.

Slow and steady habit change might not be sexy, but it’s a lot more effective than the “I want it ALL and I want it NOW!” mentality. Small changes stick better because they aren’t intimidating (if you do it right, you’ll barely even notice them!).

If you have a lot of bad habits today, the last thing you need to do is remodel your entire life overnight. Want to lose weight? Stop it with the crash diets and excessive exercise plans. Instead of following a super restrictive plan that bans anything fun, add one positive habit per week. For example, you could start with something easy like drinking more water during your first week. The following week, you could move on to eating 3 fruits and veggies every day. And the next week, you could aim to eat a fistful of protein at every meal.

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2. You put the cart before the horse.

“Supplementing” a crappy diet is stupid, so don’t even think about it. Focus on the actions that produce the overwhelming amount of results. If it’s not important, don’t worry about it.

3. You don’t believe in yourself.

A failure to act can cripple you before you leave the starting line. If you’ve tried (and failed) to set a New Year’s resolution (or several) in the past, I know it might be hard to believe in yourself. Doubt is a nagging voice in your head that will resist personal growth with every ounce of its being. The only way to defeat doubt is to believe in yourself. Who cares if you’ve failed a time or two? This year, you can try again (but better this time).

4. Too much thinking, not enough doing.

The best self-help book in the world can’t save you if you fail to take action. Yes, seek inspiration and knowledge, but only as much as you can realistically apply to your life. If you can put just one thing you learn from every book or article you read into practice, you’ll be on the fast track to success.

5. You’re in too much of a hurry.

If it was quick-and-easy, everybody would do it, so it’s in your best interest to exercise your patience muscles.

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6. You don’t enjoy the process.

Is it any wonder people struggle with their weight when they see eating as a chore and exercise as a dreadful bore? The best fitness plan is one that causes the least interruption to your daily life. The goal isn’t to add stress to your life, but rather to remove it.

The best of us couldn’t bring ourselves to do something we hate consistently, so make getting in shape fun, however you’ve gotta do it. That could be participating in a sport you love, exercising with a good friend or two, joining a group exercise class so you can meet new people, or giving yourself one “free day” per week where you forget about your training plan and exercise in any way you please.

7. You’re trying too hard.

Unless you want to experience some nasty cravings, don’t deprive your body of pleasure. The more you tell yourself you can’t have a food, the more you’re going to want it. As long as you’re making positive choices 80-90% of the time, don’t sweat the occasional indulgence.

8. You don’t track your progress.

Keeping a written record of your training progress will help you sustain an “I CAN do this” attitude. All you need is a notebook and a pen. For every workout, record what exercises you do, the number of repetitions performed, and how much weight you used if applicable. Your goal? Do better next time. Improving your best performance on a regular basis offers positive feedback that will encourage you to keep going.

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9. You have no social support.

It can be hard to stay motivated when you feel alone. The good news? You’re not alone: far from it. Post a status on Facebook asking your friends if anybody would like to be your gym or accountability buddy. If you know a co-worker who shares your goal, try to coordinate your lunch time and go out together so you’ll be more likely to make positive decisions. Join a support group of like-minded folks on Facebook, LinkedIn, or elsewhere on the internet. Strength in numbers is powerful, so use it to your advantage.

10. You know your what but not your why.

The biggest reason why most New Year’s resolutions fail: you know what you want but you not why you want it.

Yes: you want to get fit, lose weight, or be healthy… but why is your goal important to you? For example:

Do you want to be fit so you can be a positive example that your children can admire and look up to?

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Do you want to lose fat so you’ll feel more confident and sexy in your body than ever before?

Do you want to be healthy so you’ll have increased clarity, energy, and focus that would carry over into every single aspect of your life?

Whether you’re getting in shape because you want to live longer, be a good example, boost your energy, feel confident, have an excuse to buy hot new clothes, or increase your likelihood of getting laid (hey, I’m not here to judge) is up to you. Forget about any preconceived notions and be true to yourself.

  • The more specific you can make your goal,
  • The more vivid it will be in your imagination,
  • The more encouraged you’ll be,
  • The more likely it is you will succeed (because yes, you CAN do this!).

I hope this guide to why New Year’s resolutions fail helps you achieve your goals this year. If you found this helpful, please pass it along to some friends so they can be successful just like you. What do you hope to accomplish next year?

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