Does Coffee Cause Weight Gain? The Surprising Truth Behind Your Daily Cup of Joe

crazy by Editorial Staff | Updated on April 26th, 2023

Hey there, coffee lover! As you sip on your daily cup of joe, have you ever wondered if it might be contributing to your weight gain?


If you’re anything like me, the thought has crossed your mind at least once.

Weight Gain

So, grab your cup of coffee and join me on a deep dive into the world of caffeine, calories, and the truth about coffee’s impact on weight gain. Trust me; you’ll want to keep reading!

TL;DR:

  • Coffee itself is low in calories
  • Weight gain from coffee is often due to added sugar and cream
  • Caffeine in coffee may have short-term appetite-suppressing effects
  • Coffee’s impact on weight is influenced by individual factors
  • Moderation is key for a healthy relationship with coffee

The Bare Bones: Coffee and Calories

First, let’s address the question that’s likely on everyone’s mind: does coffee itself contain many calories? The answer is a resounding no! A plain, black coffee contains only about 2 calories per 8-ounce cup. Even espresso, which is more concentrated, has only around 5 calories per ounce.

How Do Calories Sneak Into Your Cup?

However, the calories in coffee can add up once you start adding your favorite sweeteners, creamers, and flavored syrups. Let’s take a quick look at some popular coffee add-ins:

  • Sugar (1 tsp): 16 calories
  • Honey (1 tbsp): 64 calories
  • Heavy cream (1 tbsp): 52 calories
  • Half-and-half (1 tbsp): 20 calories
  • Non-dairy creamer (1 tbsp): 35 calories
  • Flavored syrup (1 tbsp): 50-80 calories

As you can see, the calories from these additions can quickly pile up and contribute to weight gain if consumed in excess.

Caffeine and Appetite: A Complex Relationship

Another aspect to consider when discussing coffee and weight is the appetite-suppressing effect of caffeine. Some studies suggest that caffeine may help reduce hunger in the short term, potentially leading to a decrease in calorie intake.

However, this effect is likely to diminish with regular caffeine consumption, as your body becomes more tolerant to its effects.

Individual Factors: Genetics, Metabolism, and Lifestyle

It’s essential to remember that coffee’s impact on weight can vary from person to person, depending on factors like genetics, metabolism, and overall lifestyle. Some people might find that coffee helps them maintain or even lose weight, while others may experience weight gain.

Moderation is Key: Striking a Healthy Balance

As with most things in life, moderation is the key to maintaining a healthy relationship with coffee. To minimize the risk of weight gain associated with coffee consumption, consider the following tips:

  • Stick to black coffee or use low-calorie sweeteners and creamers
  • Limit high-calorie specialty coffee drinks
  • Monitor your overall daily calorie intake
  • Be aware of your body’s response to caffeine

The Role of Coffee in Metabolism and Exercise Performance

There are many benefits to drinking coffee, particularly when consumed in moderation.

Coffee and Metabolism

Caffeine, the primary stimulant in coffee, has been shown to increase metabolism and fat oxidation in some individuals.

Coffee impacts your metabolism and can help boost it when consumed in moderation. Studies have shown that caffeine can increase your resting metabolic rate (RMR) by 3-11%, with larger doses having a greater effect. 

By temporarily boosting your metabolism, caffeine may help you burn more calories throughout the day. However, as with appetite suppression, these effects can vary greatly between individuals and may diminish with regular consumption.

Exercise Performance

Caffeine is also known to enhance athletic performance, endurance, and reaction time. Consuming coffee before a workout may help you exercise longer and with greater intensity, potentially leading to increased calorie burning and improved weight management.

It’s important to note that the recommended dosage and timing for caffeine intake can vary depending on factors such as individual tolerance, body weight, and type of exercise.

Antioxidants and Other Nutrients in Coffee

Coffee is a rich source of antioxidants and essential nutrients, which can provide various health benefits. Some of the key nutrients found in coffee include:

  • Chlorogenic acid: An antioxidant that may help regulate blood sugar levels and reduce inflammation.
  • Riboflavin (vitamin B2): Essential for energy production, cellular function, and maintaining healthy skin and eyes.
  • Pantothenic acid (vitamin B5): Involved in the synthesis of fatty acids, cholesterol, and certain hormones.
  • Manganese and potassium: Minerals that play a role in various bodily functions, including metabolism, bone health, and blood pressure regulation.

By mentioning these additional benefits of coffee, you can provide a more comprehensive understanding of the potential health effects of this popular beverage.

The Importance of Personalized Nutrition

Every individual has unique nutritional needs and responds differently to various foods and beverages. Therefore, it’s crucial to listen to your body and consult a healthcare professional or registered dietitian for personalized advice on coffee consumption and its potential impact on your weight and overall health.

Conclusion: The Final Verdict on Coffee and Weight Gain

So, does coffee cause weight gain? The answer is both yes and no. While coffee itself is low in calories, the additional ingredients we often add can quickly turn our favorite drink into a high-calorie treat. Caffeine may offer short-term appetite suppression, but its effects can vary from person to person.

To maintain a healthy weight and still enjoy your daily cup of joe, practice moderation and be mindful of what you’re adding to your coffee. Cheers to a well-balanced coffee experience!

Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice or treatment. Consult a healthcare professional for medical concerns. The author and publisher are not liable for any actions taken based on this article.

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Disclosure: No compensation or free products were received in exchange for writing this review.

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Editorial Staff

The editorial staff at Crazy Coffee Crave is a team of coffee enthusiasts & Baristas who enjoy the one thing we all think about as soon as we get up in the morning. Trusted by thousands of readers worldwide.