Decaf Coffee: Is It Healthy?

If caffeine gives you the jitters you may opt for coffee that’s “de-buzzed.” But is this a healthy choice?
Related To:
145128938

145128938

Coffee cup

Photo by: Jean-Francois Schmit

Jean-Francois Schmit

If caffeine gives you the jitters you may opt for coffee that’s "de-buzzed." But is this a healthy choice?
Yes?

While caffeine does have some health benefits, too much can be harmful, especially if you have a heart condition. For this reason, many folks opt for the decaf version of their morning (or evening) Joe. Decaf can also come in handy if you’re trying to break the caffeine habit. Pregnant women sometimes switch to decaf to keep their morning ritual somewhat intact.

Coffee is also famous for it’s antioxidant content. Some of the specific antioxidants vary depending on the type of coffee bean, but both decaf and regular provide some of these cell protecting nutrients.

No?

It may not affect the nutritional quality but most would agree there’s a flavor difference between caffeinated and decaf coffee. There’s also been some controversy over the safety of the decaffeination process.

Legend has it that back in the early 1960s and 70’s potentially carcinogenic solvents were used to extract caffeine but nowadays more natural plant-based solvents, plain water, or CO2 (carbon dioxide) are most commonly used.

Despite efforts to strip all the caffeine, a small amount does remain. Eight fluid ounces of decaf coffee from Starbucks averages 3 to 12 milligrams of caffeine; a cup of regular brew has 160 milligrams.

The Verdict: Decaf will deprive you of caffeine but that’s about it. If coffee without the buzz is the right choice for you, there’s no need to worry.

Tell Us: Do you drink decaf or regular?

Next Up

What Makes Coffee Smell So Good? An Infographic Makes Scents of It

Why do we love the smell of coffee so much? A helpful infographic makes scents of it all with a chemical breakdown.

It Turns Out That Coffee Drinkers Get a Pre-Workout Caffeine Boost, Too

Consuming caffeine before you exercise can enhance your performance even if you are a big-time coffee guzzler.

What Do You Get When You Cross a Latte and an Avocado?

What’s more on trend than artfully poured lattes and avocados? An artfully poured latte in an avocado.

Food Network Staffer Diary: I Broke Up with Coffee for 4 Days

The result? She became a zombie troll. Find out more here.

Coffee Creamer: Good or Bad?

Do you start your morning with a splash of liquid coffee creamer? Find out if that’s a smart way to begin the day.

Quick Tip: Have the Coffee, Not the Calories

Black coffee doesn't have lots of calories, but once you start adding in the extras, the total skyrockets.

What's Your Java IQ?

To celebrate National Coffee Day, take Food Network Magazine's coffee quiz.

Carrot Lattes Are Pretty Much What They Sound Like

Baristas in Australia would like to present you with a carrot latte, which is, yes, a latte served in a carrot.

Nutrient to Know: Chlorogenic Acid

If you’re a coffee drinker, you may be getting plenty of this potent antioxidant – find out why it’s good for you.