Health benefits of café de olla

One of the most traditional ways to prepare coffee in Mexico is known as “café de olla” which has its origins in pre-Colonial times

The many health benefits of café de olla
Café de olla has many health benefits – Photo: File photo/EL UNIVERSAL
English 12/11/2019 17:09 Karla Orona Mexico City Actualizada 17:11

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Coffee is a beverage that has many ways of being prepared; its flavor is quite versatile so it can be combined with milk, species, or liquor.

One of the most traditional ways to prepare coffee in Mexico is known as “café de olla,” which according to the Specialty Coffees and Cafés Association, has its origins in pre-Colonial times.

“It is known that Moctezuma drank an infusion of honey, corn, and cacao, very similar to the mix that is known today as café de olla,” as they explain on their website.

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With time, coffee and other ingredients, such as anise, clove, cinnamon, and brown sugar (piloncillo).

Likewise, according to Larousse Cocina dictionary, café de olla must be prepared with ground coffee and in a clay pot, hence its name, although nowadays many prepare it in other kinds of pots.

Some café de olla varieties include adding to the mix ingredients like orange or lime peel, and in some regions, it is common to use soluble coffee instead.

But café de olla is not only a traditional beverage with a great taste, but it can also have health benefits due to its ingredients.

Piloncillo, brown sugar, also known as panela, is known for its natural elaboration process, which makes it the less harmful of artificial sweeteners since it keeps many nutrients of sugar cane, such as vitamins, magnesium, zinc, and phosphorus.

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For its part, cinnamon is a spice with a wide variety of benefits since it supplies calcium, fiber, and magnesium.

It also reduces glucose in the blood, the reason why it is suggested for people with type 2 diabetes, metabolic syndrome, and insulin resistance, according to expert in nutrition Fernanda Alvarado.

Among other benefits of cinnamon are its high antioxidants contents, helping in the treatment of digestive conditions, having anti-inflammatory properties, and helping to prevent neurodegenerative diseases.

Anise and clove are also species with health benefits. Clove is able to fight E Coli due to its antimicrobial potential, just as star anise which, in addition, contains antioxidants and helps with digestive diseases, according to Dr. Mercola.

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Different researches have shown that the moderate consumption of coffee (from 3 to 4 cups a day) can be good for the body, according to Harvard Health Publishing.

“Researches have shown that coffee drinkers have less risk of cardiovascular diseases (including heart attacks, heart failure, and strokes).”

It also helps to reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes, Parkinson's disease, uterine and liver cancer, cirrhosis, and gout.

A single cup of coffee contains riboflavin (vitamin B2), pantothenic acid (vitamin B5), manganese, potassium, and niacin (vitamin B3), all of the elements that help to correct body functioning.

Drinking a cup of café de olla not only warms the body, but it can also bring health benefits with moderate consumption.

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