I was shocked like how you are right now. My preferred coffee making method is a French Press, so when I learned of this, I decided to investigate why people are saying these horrible things about the best invention since coffee was founded.
Pressed coffee has been a staple to a lot of households because it is convenient, practical, and needs no power source. However, evidence-based data reveals that French press may actually potentially harm your health. The worst is this: it can increase your cholesterol levels.
The culprit for this is a coffee diterpene compound called cafestol. Unfiltered drinks house large amounts of this cholesterol-raising compound. Now, if you’re perfectly healthy, you may continue enjoying your French press coffee. However, if you already have some high cholesterol issues, this may cause some concern.
French Press History
As early as 1852, the idea of French press brewing rose. A couple of French people, Mayer and Delforge, came up with this brilliant idea. Of course as the world evolved, the design evolved too. In 1965, Michael Caine used this in the movie Ipcress File which made it popular in Europe.
Today, French press consists of a cylindrical beaker mainly made of glass. However, there are models that have this in plastic too. The lid is either metal or plastic with a stainless steel wire. Additionally, it comes with a mesh filter.
The majority of coffee lovers hate the idea of grounds in their coffee. In French press, the grounds are allowed to settle and coffee is poured rather carefully with no filter.
As we have stated, French press can potentially raise your low density lipoproteins, or commonly known as the bad cholesterol, over time. Bad cholesterol promotes build up of clot in the blood vessels which can lead to heart diseases. If there are clots, blood flow is obstructed, and may lead to symptoms such as chest pain or angina.
Study showed, unfiltered coffee increases both the total and bad cholesterol. This is due to the coffee oils, especially oily substances called diterpenes, such as cafestol and kahweol, that’s present in these beverages.
If you really can steer away from the joys French press coffee brings, make it a point to have your blood tested regularly to ensure that you remain as healthy as possible. However, remember that if high cholesterol runs in your family, you may have to think twice.
One to two cups a day of unfiltered coffee may not make your blood vessels go crazy, but if you’re the type who consumes 5-8 cups a day, then we must say your risk is significantly higher.
Now if you really can’t resist, you may add extra filtration just to decrease the potential harmful risk of drinking unfiltered coffee. Simply use a coffee filters and run your coffee through them.
Benefits of French press coffee
- No need for electricity
- Easy to clean
- You can adjust the coffee to taste
- More delicious than drip coffee
- No need for a filter
- Thicker and less watery coffee texture
- Cheaper than other regular coffee makers
If unfiltered coffee really does add value to your life, Dr. Eric Rimm, a professor of epidemiology and nutrition at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, suggests to have your lipid profile tested to ensure normal LDL levels. He recommends that practice consuming no more than four cups a day to keep health problems at bay. Also, he recommends to cut off any additives such as creamers and refined sugars because these may even add to health risks.
You should also consider the roast! As a rule of thumb: the darker the roast, the lower the cholesterol.
Now that we have laid out the truth in front of you, it’s all up to you what you want to do. Remember, health is wealth!