Have you been thinking of switching to decaf?
If you’re a regular coffee drinker, you probably can’t start the day without your morning cup. And, you aren’t alone. In fact, 64% of Americans drink a cup of coffee every day.
Coffee is packed with healthy compounds like B-vitamins, magnesium, potassium, and antioxidants. So, it’s a healthy part of your morning routine. But, all that caffeine can have a few adverse effects.
If you want all the health benefits of coffee minus the nervous tummy and mid-morning jitters, decaf is probably your best bet. Keep reading to learn more about the difference between decaf and regular coffee, and decide which is best for you!
What’s the Difference Between Decaf and Regular Coffee?
If you’ve never tried decaf, don’t worry. In this section, we’ll explain everything you need to know before you start shopping.
Keep in mind, incorporating decaf coffee into your day doesn’t have to be all or nothing. If you’re sensitive to caffeine, you can still satisfy afternoon and evening cravings by grabbing a hot cup of decaf instead of regular coffee.
How Is Decaf Made?
Simply put, decaffeinated coffee is regular coffee that has had a large percentage of its caffeine content removed during production.
This process starts with steaming the unroasted or raw beans. Then, the beans are rinsed to remove their excess caffeine. In some cases, the beans are instead soaked in hot water for an extended time.
In either case, the beans are then dried and roasted like normal. While this process does remove most of the caffeine naturally present in the beans, a small amount, typically around 1%, is left behind.
The end result is that decaf has about 7 mg of caffeine per cup, compared to the 70 mg found in a regular coffee blend.
What Are the Health Benefits?
When it comes to the choice of decaf vs regular coffee, health benefits can play a vital role.
Caffeine is a stimulant that may increase blood pressure and trigger some heart conditions like arrhythmias and tachycardia. It can also cause unwanted effects like anxiousness, upset stomach, and even insomnia.
Most coffee drinkers won’t experience these symptoms, but if they sound familiar, you should consider making the switch to decaf right away!
One of the biggest benefits of decaf coffee is that you’ll still get all the healthy vitamins and nutrients found in a traditional cup, without the caffeine.
Does Decaf Taste Different?
Whether or not decaf tastes different depends on who you ask! Because it has been processed differently and comes from the robusta bean rather than arabica, decaf coffee can taste slightly darker or more acidic. But, if you add milk and sugar to your morning cup, you probably won’t taste the difference.
Serving decaf coffee either cold-brewed or over ice will also reduce any acidic “edge” to its flavor.
Lastly, you can consider your brewing methods if you want a perfectly smooth cup of decaf. Pourover methods and french presses are perfect for a mellow and easy-drinking mug, no matter which blend you’re brewing.
Give It a Try
Now that you know a bit about the difference between decaf and regular coffee, you’re ready to ditch the caffeine.
Remember that you don’t have to go for a fulltime switch. Decaf is a great option for late-night coffee cravings that won’t leave you sleepless.
If you’re ready to give decaf a try, be sure to start with a high-quality whole bean. And, if possible, hand pour your cup rather than using a french press or electric machine.