Drinking a certain number of coffees each day can maximise your workout and help you shed the pounds, nutrition and diet expert Michael Mosley has said.
Coffee is well-known for its ability to help us stay awake by increasing our energy levels and alertness – but the stimulating caffeine in the drink can also boost your exercise results. Dr Mosley explained that coffee is also rich in polyphenols – antioxidants that have powerful anti-inflammatory effects.
Speaking on his BBC podcast Just One Thing, he said: “Surprisingly, drinking coffee not only picks us up mentally, but has been shown to boost up performance in all sorts of other ways, including increasing the amount of fat you burn while doing exercise and improving endurance so you can keep going for longer.”
Podcast guest Dr James Betts, a professor of metabolic physiology at the University of Bath, agreed with Dr Mosley’s remarks, the Liverpool Echo reports. “Despite the number of supplements athletes may take, I genuinely feel you can count on one hand the things that actually work and I put caffeine on top of that list both for the size of effect that you get, and the breadth,” he said.
Dr Betts added: “Most events require a combination of speed, scale, endurance, strength, and caffeine seems to tick all the boxes.”
Although Dr Mosley warned that drinking too much caffeine risks disrupting sleep and raising blood pressure, he advised that three to four coffees per day is thought to be the “sweet spot” in order to get the most health benefits. He also pointed out that you don’t have to opt for fancy brands to get the most out of your brew.
“It doesn’t have to be a fancy espresso,” Dr Mosley said. “You get mainly the same benefits from instant, so feel free to drink whatever you like.”