Can coffee be part of a balanced, healthy lifestyle? Absolutely! However, too much caffeine can result in a number of negative side effects that we are all familiar with. Too much caffeine can leave us anxious and jittery, interfere with our sleep, lead to headaches, make us irritable, and even cause more serious health issues.
Maybe it’s time to switch from regular to decaf coffee.
It may seem like a major sacrifice, but decaf actually still has some of the same benefits as regular coffee. Decaf still contains antioxidants and beneficial compounds that can help boost your mood and mental focus. It also contains about half the amount of caffeine as regular coffee, so it still provides some energy boost without the excessive amounts found in espresso or other highly caffeinated beverages.
What is Decaf Coffee?
Decaf coffee is brewed from beans that have had their caffeine content removed. The beans are typically passed through some chemical solvents, like water and carbon dioxide, to extract the caffeine. Though that does not remove 100% of the caffeine content, it does remove a majority of it. The taste of decaf coffee is very similar to regular coffee, but with a slightly milder flavor.
Some brands may use a natural decaffeination process, like the Swiss Water Method, to remove caffeine from their beans. This water-based extraction is not only effective but also has a much gentler impact on both taste and health.
Benefits of Drinking Decaf Coffee Over Regular
Although caffeine can help you feel more awake, it is also a diuretic. This means that too much caffeine can lead to dehydration, which then causes dizziness and headaches. Caffeine is also highly addictive and dependence-forming, making it hard for coffee lovers to break the habit of needing coffee for energy every day.
Here are a few benefits of drinking decaf instead:
Drinking decaf coffee will help reduce the jitters and anxiousness associated with caffeine overload.
Improves Sleep Quality
Did you know that caffeine can stay in your system for up to 8 hours? This means that if you drink regular coffee late in the day, you may have difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep. If you’re looking to enjoy a hot cup of coffee at night without sacrificing your sleep, decaf is the alternative.
Too much caffeine can lead to distraction and lack of focus, but decaf still contains enough beneficial compounds to provide a mental boost without overstimulation.
More Balanced Mood
Caffeine can cause mood swings and irritability, but decaf coffee is much less likely to aggravate these issues.
Although coffee typically has negative effects on blood pressure and heart rate, decaffeinated coffee is a healthier alternative because it contains lower levels of caffeine.
Loaded With Antioxidants
Decaffeinated coffee contains healthy compounds and antioxidants that can improve your overall health by reducing the risk of chronic diseases. It does this by providing important nutrients like magnesium, potassium, and chromium.
Decaf coffee contains polyphenols, which can protect your skin from UV damage and help fight the signs of aging.
How to Brew the Perfect Cup of Decaf
Decaf is usually brewed the same way as regular coffee. You can use your regular drip machine, pour-over brewer, French press, or even an espresso maker to make decaf.
To get the most out of your de-caffeinated coffee, it is important to use freshly roasted beans. Pre-ground beans start to lose their flavor soon after they have been ground.
Brewing the perfect cup of decaf coffee starts with water. Make sure to use cold, filtered water for the best results. Then, adjust the grind size or brewing time accordingly; some beans require a finer grind and a longer brew time than others. Finally, try different types of beans to find the flavor that’s right for you.
Best Decaf Coffee You Can Buy in India
Although you might struggle to locate stores or supermarkets selling instant or decaf coffee beans, it is easy to buy them online. While we recommend a few brands below, feel free to explore all the options available online.
Here are some of our top recommendations
Nescafe’s Dark Roast Decaf Coffee, sourced from Ireland, is one of the most beloved instant coffees on the Indian market. It has an intensity level of 7, giving it a mild but rich flavor.
They have used the natural water process to remove the caffeine from the coffee beans, without sacrificing any of the flavors.
If you are recently switching to decaf, this is the coffee for you because the flavor tastes just like regular caffeinated coffee.
This dark roast instant decaf has a mid-intensity flavor that is rich and full-bodied. It is made from naturally decaffeinated beans, so you can enjoy the usual coffee flavor without the caffeine.
This medium roast instant decaf from M&S is mild and smooth, with a hint of sweetness. This decaf has a moderate intensity (of 3), making it smooth and easy to drink. It is 100% Arabica coffee, containing 64 ml/min caffeine content.
While it costs almost double what the Nescafe gold decaf costs, the flavor is milder and smoother.
This medium roast instant decaf from M&S is smooth and mild with a hint of sweetness. It contains 64 ml/min caffeine content and is made up of 100% Arabica
Tim Hortons, a popular Canadian coffee brand with over 50 years of experience, has created this amazing and flavorful instant decaf. Since t is imported, it is one of the most expensive decafs on our list but for those who do not compromise on taste, this is your go-to.
This medium roast instant decaf has a moderate intensity and is made from 100% Arabica beans. It is smooth, with a rich flavor that has fruity undertones.
Tim Hortons’ medium roast instant decaf is expensive, but its rich flavor and pleasant aroma are worth the price.
This is a 100% Arabica high-grown medium roast instant decaf from Fairtrade. It has a moderate intensity (3), and the beans are ethically sourced and sustainably farmed. It is a smooth, nutty drink with an earthy finish.
Not very expensive, this is a great decaf to try out if you are not sure if you like decaf.
Moderate-intensity medium roast instant decaf with smooth and rich nutty flavors. It is ethically sourced and sustainably farmed, making it an affordable but quality decaf option.
Another great instant decaf by Nescafé, this one is a ground coffee. It has an intensity level of 7 and is made from 100% Arabica beans. They process the beans by slowly roasting them to generate a premium-grade decaf with a light floral edge
It is a light roast with a smooth and creamy finish. Just 100 gms of ground coffee makes up to 55 cups of coffee which makes it great value for money.
Nescafe Gold Ground Decaf is made from premium Arabica beans and has a light floral aroma. Our experts roast it lightly to preserve the bean’s natural flavors, creating a smooth and creamy texture. A cost-effective and great option to start the decaf journey
Downsides of Drinking Decaf
Although decaf coffee has less caffeine, it is not completely healthy. There are some potential negatives you should know about:
- Decaf coffee can contain small amounts of caffeine, so if you’re very sensitive it may still affect you.
- It contains the same chemical compounds as regular coffee, meaning it has the potential to increase your risk for heart disease or other health problems like high blood pressure.
- Decaffeinated coffee is often more expensive than regular coffee.
- Decaf coffee doesn’t taste the same as regular coffee, no matter what the decaf brands claim.
Decaf coffee can be a great alternative for those who want to reduce their caffeine intake without giving up the taste of coffee. It is available in various flavors, roasts, and brands so you can find one that meets your preference. Although it has some downsides, there are also many health benefits associated with drinking decaffeinated coffee. So if you are looking for a healthier option, give decaf coffee a try.