Why We Love Coffee

Written by
Kyle Sherman
Published on
September 14, 2021 at 8:00:00 AM PDT September 14, 2021 at 8:00:00 AM PDTth, September 14, 2021 at 8:00:00 AM PDT

Do you wake up happy with your morning cuppa joe? Thought so.

Most people don’t realize the coffee plant has white blossoms that smell like jasmine and Ethiopians first choose the leaves for brewing a medicine. They may not know the plant has red fruits that look like cherries and are called “magical fruit” in the 11th century, when coffee is discovered. They do know that roasting the beans, grinding them finely, then percolating them slowly with water yields a tasty, aromatic drink and it is one of the most popular beverages in the world (kudos to the Ottoman empire). Bottom line, people enjoy drinking coffee because it makes them feel good. This and a few more reasons:

Coffee tastes great – Anyone who drinks coffee loves the taste, otherwise they’d choose another beverage. Coffee tastes great alone or combined with a variety of flavor enhancers, from cream and sugar to honey, milk, vanilla, you name it. As an ingredient, adding coffee enhances the flavor of chocolate in baked recipes and the richness of chili.

Coffee boosts energy – The ancient concoction contains more than 1,000 natural compounds including the mild stimulant caffeine that contribute to energy and focus, good health and wellbeing.

Coffee helps people relax – Despite some needing that shot of caffeine to jolt them out of bed, coffee lovers say their morning cup brings them comfort, like wrapping in a warm blanket.

Coffee could predict a longer life – Research that studied those who regularly drink coffee, both regular and decaf, have a lower risk of “overall death” than nondrinkers, i.e., they are less likely to perish from heart or respiratory disease, stroke, diabetes, infections, specific cancers, injuries or accidents – things that cut life short.

The Cup of Joe Habit

There are a whole lot of theories on where the term “cup of joe” originates. Military officers think it’s short for “cup of jamoke,” a term first used in a 1931 officer’s manual. World War I soldiers attribute it to “cup of George,” which refers to their instant coffee ration made by the G. Washington Coffee Refining Company. For Navy boys, it’s short for “cup of Josephus Daniels,” the Navy secretary under President Wilson. Josephus is a stickler for stricter moral standards in the Navy, so he bans the use of alcohol on ships. After that, ship stewards increase their coffee purchases as a substitute, and sailors drink their cups of joe instead. Still, “cup of joe” may come from “joe,” just the common guy (who enjoys a social drink). Whatever the theory, we likely have our armed forces to thank for such a creative name for a cup of coffee.

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