Archive for August 23rd, 2011

Coffee – Coffea arabica


Caffeine is my shepherd;
I shall not doze.
It maketh me to wake in green pastures,
It leadeth me beyond the sleeping masses.
It restoreth my buzz,
It leadeth me in the paths of consciousness
for it’s name’s sake.
Yea, though I walk through the valley of
the shadow of addiction,
I will fear no Equal
for thou art with me;
Thy cream and thy sugar
they comfort me.
Thou preparest a carafe before me
in the presence of Thy Starbucks,
Thou anointest my day with pep;
My cup runneth over.
Surely richness and taste
shall follow me all the days of my life:
and I will dwell in the house of Mocha forever.
Amen! Amen! Amen!

           – Author Unknown


This shrub has been grown for centuries in the shade of other trees, but modern farming has it grown in long rows under the full sun. This method causes the beans to grow faster, the bushes to produce more…that all seems good right….but there is a down side. The negative here is that more forest must be destroyed to get the clear cut land and more fertilizer and pesticides must be used to produce the coffee beans.


The Oromo people’s ancestors on the Ethiopian plateaus were believed to be the first to discover the coffee bean and the energizing effects of the coffee bean plant. It is told in mythology of a young shepherd who watched the behavior of his goats after they ate the beans. He then took the beans to the local Muslim monastery where the holy man threw the beans into the fire, because he disapproved of the effect the beans had had. As the beans roasted an aroma issued forth and the scent drew all the other holy men to it. They removed the beans from the fire and boiled them in water, they found the drink was heavenly!

In Herbal medicine coffee drinking appears to reduce the risk of alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, heart disease, adult onset diabetes, cirrhosis of the liver, reduces risk of colon cancer, reduces headaches, and gout. My only question with the heart link is if it is so great then why is the caffeine eliminated from the coffee for heart disease sufferers, the caffeine is one of the most important components, it acts as a stimulant!


Many adults consume coffee in the US as their morning wake up drink, some are so addicted they are grouchy and virtually non functional without it! But there are other uses for coffee other than the traditional cup of joe…it can be added to baked goods, ice cream, and alcoholic drinks for a flavoring agent.


An interesting tidbit of history…the Continental Congress of the yet to become United States declared that coffee was the national drink. It was a protest over the high taxation imposed by the British crown on tea that later resulted in the Boston Tea Party!

The above picture is from Koehler’s Medicinal-Plants 1887 [Image in Public Domain]