Muslim Villa

Category 8 => MV inputs - => Topic started by: Zeynab on October 03, 2006, 03:57:15 am

Title: Story of Coffee
Post by: Zeynab on October 03, 2006, 03:57:15 am
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Tracking the history of coffee has been one of the most interesting explorations I have done on any commodity.  There are many stories of how coffee was first discovered.  Apparently, coffee beans were initially eaten and the drink came much later.   
According to a legend coffee beans and leaves were found by an Ethiopian shepherd who saw his goats and sheep dancing on their hind legs after eating some red berries.  Another version says that the Ethiopian shepherd observed his goats and camels staying awake all night after grazing on coffee leaves and berries.  He then tasted the berries himself and felt much less drowsy.  He then mentioned it to the people of his village and many of them began taking it too.  Coffee beans and leaves helped them to stay awake for night prayers.  Subsequently coffee was sold in Yemen by Ethiopian merchants travelling to the Arabian Peninsula.
But in accordance with historical information, the goat shepherds of Yemen were the first to cultivate coffee around 575 A.D.  From Yemen the use of coffee beans and leaves spread throughout the Arabian Peninsula.  The Ottoman rulers later introduced it in Turkey.  Initially, coffee beans and leaves were used for medicinal purposes.  Coffee began being consumed as a popular drink by the 15th century all over the Muslim world.  This was done by crushing the coffee beans which was very similar to the modern coffee. 
Undoubtedly, the Arabs were the pioneers of the trade and consumption of coffee  and thus the old Arab phrase  - "The first cup is for the guest, the second for enjoyment, the third for the sword." (Referring to coffee as refreshment for soldiers). 

At first, coffee became an essential drink in religious ceremonies.  It helped the pious ones to stay awake during their long prayer sessions at night.  It soon became a favorite of the sufis and dervishes who introduced coffee in Makkah and Medina.  From the two holy cities, the popularity of coffee spread throughout the Muslim world by the visiting pilgrims, mainly to Egypt, Turkey and Persia.  In the early 16th century, Makkah and Medina came under Ottoman rule and for most of the 16th and 17th centuries, coffee trade was controlled by the Turks.  The world's very first coffee shop was called Kiva Han.  It was opened in Constantinople (Turkey) in 1475 by two young Syrian men.  It's presumed that coffee plantations began in India during early 1700s when a Muslim pilgrim smuggled coffee seeds and planted them in India.  About the same period, the Dutch smuggled a coffee plant and cultivated it commercially in two of their colonies, Ceylon and Java.
Al-Jaziri, a 16th century Arab scholar says - "At the beginning of this century, the news reached us in Egypt that a drink called qahwa had spread in the Yemen and was being used by sufi shieks and others to help them stay awake during their devotional exercises, which they perform according to their well-known way.  Then it reached us, sometime later ..."
According to Sheik abd-al-Kadir "Coffee is the common man's gold, and like gold, it brings to every person the feeling of luxury and nobility."
Coffee houses have been one of the oldest traditions in Turkey.   It is a place for recreation where men, young and old, gather to chat, read and recite poetry over a cup of coffee while smoking their hookahs. 
As a popular Turkish proverb goes: "Coffee should be black as hell, strong as death and sweet as love."  In the Turkish society, coffee brings with it a silly mythical tradition as well.  Gazing at left over coffee in a cup is supposed to help predict the future. 

Prospective brides are expected to serve coffee in their homes to their future husbands.  If the woman likes the marriage proposal and desires to marry the man, she expresses her approval by adding sugar in his cup of coffee.  Otherwise she adds salt.  If the man drinks the coffee despite the salt, it is a gesture that he still wants to marry her.  If he doesn't, it would signify that he has accepted her decision to reject him. 

It is also customary to serve coffee in the comfortable and luxurious Turkish baths to enhance the atmosphere and hospitality.
In the yester years, Turks considered coffee to be an aphrodisiac.  Men were expected to keep large stocks of coffee in their homes.  If they refused to do so, legally this was considered a legitimate ground for their wives to seek a divorce.   
Coffee and coffee beans arrived in Europe through Turk and Arab traders via Venice as late as the 1700s, a drink spiced with clove, cinnamon and cardamom at that time.  A Venetian in 1615 wrote: "The Turks have a drink of black color, which during the summer is very cooling, whereas in the winter it heats and warms the body, remaining always the same beverage and not changing its substance.  They swallow it hot as it comes from the fire and they drink it in long draughts, not at dinner time, but as a kind of dainty and sipped slowly while talking with one's friends.  One cannot find any meetings among them where they drink it not ..."
The Italians were the first in Europe to taste coffee.  Initially, the orthodox Christians of Italy considered coffee as something 'evil brought in by the Muslims.'  But when Pope (Clement VIII) tasted it, he liked it much and became quite a connoisseur of coffee.  Soon coffee began getting popular all over Italy and gradually spread to the rest of Europe.  The Italians began to enrich the coffee culture in Europe.  The marvelous expresso coffee topped with whipped cream was known as the 'seductive coffee' introduced for the first time in Italy in the 18th century.  The majestic cappuccino was the favorite drink at breakfast.   
In the late 1660s, the Turkish Sultan's ambassador to France introduced many Turkish traditions in Parisien cafes, and coffee took Paris by storm.  French women in particular loved coffee.  Their favorite picks in cafes were coffee, chocolates and pastries.  Coffee replaced many alcoholic drinks and soon became symbolic of 'love & romance' in France.  Cafes serving coffee became the rendezvous of women and their lovers.  According to a fashionable Parisien and a cafe-owner who's family has been in this business since generations, a cafe was considered "a living theatre."  People went there "to look, to be looked at," to pick a nice companion or just to be in the midst of an exquisite environment.  French coffee houses also became home to intellects.  Men of repute were regular visitors of French cafes and many of them drank over 40 cups of coffee a day!  Napoleon Bonaparte was known for his craving for strong black coffee.  'Strong coffee, much strong coffee, is what awakens me.  Coffee gives me warmth, waking, an unusual force and a pain that is not without very great pleasure.' "  (Napoleon Bonaparte)  So much on French madness over coffee.
About the same time when the coffee culture spread across France, it also spread to Holland, Germany and Britain.  The practice of filtering ground coffee, and mixing it with milk and sugar was first started by a Viennese called Georg Franz who lived in Turkey.   
Though Europeans did not discover coffee, they were the "pioneers" for tarnishing the early history of coffee in Europe with racism.

Unlike Turkey and the Middle East, in Europe there were tremendous class distinctions associated with coffee.  There were cafes for the bourgeois and cafes for the rich.  The sophisticated coffee shops, with music and dance, began being frequented by the aristocrats.  In the 1700s, Europeans had their own cafes where Turks and Arabs were not allowed.   
A Jewish immigrant from Lebanon is said to have opened one of the first coffee shops in England. In the 1600s, there were separate coffee houses for men and women.   By 1700, there were more than two thousand coffee houses all over England.  Writers, bankers and seafarers, each had their separate cafes with separate traditions and conversations.  The social and commercial life in the city of London that has always been a man's world, revolved around coffee houses with a completely non-alcoholic atmosphere.  The Royal Exchange which was established in London in the 16th century was surrounded by coffee houses for the convenience of the stock brokers to enjoy a light lunch and a strong cup of coffee at noon.  In 1652 the first printed coffee advertisement ran in a London paper saying "It will prevent drowsiness, and make one fit for business .. you are not to drink of it after supper, unless you intend to be watchful, for it will hinder sleep for 3 to 4 hours ..."  Many Brits had a fad about coffee.  Unlike the Turks, the English thought coffee to be an impediment for the performance of male lovers.  They also considered the preparation of coffee to be more cumbersome than tea.  Eventually, in the popularity contest of coffee vs. tea, tea became the preferred drink in English cafes.  Also, the decision of the British East India company to import tea from India was greatly responsible for the downfall of the coffee culture in England. Thus, by the end of the 1700s, England was known as a tea drinking country.  An average English drank the same quantity of coffee in a month what an Italian or French would drink in just two days! 
It was the French and Africans who took coffee to the Americas and Haiti in the 1700s by stacking coffee beans in ships and sailing across the oceans.  The British policy on tea imports inadvertently helped the spread of the coffee culture in the United States.  In 1773 many American citizens in Boston protested the Tea Tax levied by the British King on the import of tea in America.  They decided to end the tea culture in preference to coffee, an occurrence well known as the Boston Tea Party.   Shortly afterwards, coffee became the national drink of the United States of America which was then colonized by the British.   
Last but not least, according to a study by medical researchers in January 2006, there is a particular genetic mutation in the body that increases the chances of breast cancer in women.  Consumption of caffeinated coffee significantly reduces the risk of breast cancer caused by such a mutation.  Women who drink six or more cups of caffeinated coffee per day are 69% less likely to develop breast cancer.  Those who drink four to five cups each day reduce their risk by 25%, and those women taking one to three cups a day lessen their chances by 10% compared to women who do not drink coffee at all.   
From such humble beginnings, today coffee is taken so much for granted in our daily lives that we hardly think of its history.  According to statistical estimates, more than 400 billion cups of coffee are consumed each day around the world!  As a commodity in terms of trade, currently coffee ranks second only to petrol.    

The modern coffee houses look different from the medieval ones with a variety of coffee makers and expresso machines.  Yet they maintain that same distinctive atmosphere with the mesmerizing fragrance of fresh brewed coffee.

Related post:
Story of Tea (

Title: Re: Story of Coffee
Post by: Ruhi_Rose on October 03, 2006, 04:10:21 am
wow!  great article sister zee .. i've saved it.  i love coffee.  but i have this fad that it robs my sleep.  so i once tried de-caff coffee.  it was no good, too mild for a coffee drinker like me.  i thought of a quote, i think of napoleon .. that caffeine free coffee is no different from "brown hot water."  quite true.  i'm now back to regular coffee  teethsmile

Title: Re: Story of Coffee
Post by: Zeynab on October 04, 2006, 01:01:43 am
LOL .. I did the same thing.  Took caffeine free coffee for a while but then came back to my regular coffee.

Thanks for your appreciation sis ruhi  :)

Title: Re: Story of Coffee
Post by: Heba E. Husseyn on October 04, 2006, 01:05:55 am
Very interesting read.  Good chronological arrangement.  Great work sis zeynab   :D

Title: Re: Story of Coffee
Post by: Zeynab on October 04, 2006, 01:52:31 am
Thanks sis heba.  Yeah .. I think it's important to highlight the history of a product that's today taken so much for granted everywhere in the world.  But those parts of the world where coffee is consumed most at present didn't even know of its existence about 300 years ago. 

Title: Re: Story of Coffee
Post by: N. Truth Seeker on October 19, 2006, 03:50:50 am
yeah, wonderful article and a great topic.  anything that can be compared with 'oil' in the 21st century must be really important ... heeheheee  teethsmile

Title: Re: Story of Coffee
Post by: Heba E. Husseyn on March 17, 2007, 02:29:28 pm
I was reading on the discovery of our heritages on which the modern world depends so much.  I came across some incredibly interesting feedbacks on the trail of coffee, and thought of sharing them along with this wonderful article.


Someone by the name 'Nosheen' writes on Aug.2005:

Most American and Europeans, think that Muslim food and cuisine are confined to Curry, Biryani, Kebabs, Chapati and Pitta and sweets such as Kulfi and Baklawa. They are not aware of the numerous other foods and drinks, supposedly western, which are of Muslim origins. An example of these is coffee, which has invaded every household's breakfast.

The earliest cup of coffee was made in Yemen by a group of Sufis, who boiled the beans and drunk it to help them stay awake all night in prayers and remembrance of God (Allah) as early as 9th century. A group of their students took it to Cairo using it in their study circles at the al-Azhar university. From there the habit of drinking coffee took off in most Middle Eastern countries and by 13th century it reached Turkey.

Europe did not taste coffee until the 16th century first landing at Italy imported by Venetian merchants, who traded with Muslims in North Africa, Egypt and the East. The merchants first introduce the drink as a luxurious beverage destined for Venetian rich, charging them a considerable amount of money. This is how coffee first appeared in 1570 in Venetian ports quickly spreading to Venetian markets.

Yasmin Khan on Jan. 2006:

I'd also would like to add that the word -Mocha- coffee is from the port of Mocha (Makha) in Yemen west coast, when Yemen used to be no.1 world cofee exporter sadly before they moved to Qat.

Mohammad Saif on Feb. 2006:

That is a slightly incorrect, as coffee orginated in Ethiopia, hundereds of years before it was introduced into arab society. The arab traders brought coffee back to there homeland and began to cultivate the bean.


Read other comments too, including those from non-Muslims who are as usual desperately trying to discredit the blatant fact that coffee was a Muslim invention.

1001 Inventions (   (Link no longer available,apology. Unfortunately websites keep shifting topic locaitons).

Title: Re: Story of Coffee
Post by: N. Truth Seeker on March 17, 2007, 02:42:38 pm

Read other comments too, including those from non-Muslims who are as usual desperately trying to discredit the blatant fact that coffee was a Muslim invention.

I couldn't agree more   Particularly since the internet has been out, many non-Muslims have created sites especially for this purpose.  The factual history of Islam with all it's truth and glory really irks these bug*ers.  This attitude only adds to the characteristics of imperialistic jealousy.

Thanks for this Sister Heba.  I checked it.  1001 Inventions is a great site.

Title: Re: Story of Coffee
Post by: Ruhi_Rose on March 17, 2007, 02:58:20 pm
LOL.  well put br.ts.  I couldn't agree more with all of you.  believe it or not, there are some such non-Muslim sites (mostly orthodox Christians and Jewish) who propagate what would be the world's greatest lie on the basis of this "imperialistic jealousy."  They purposely try to portray that the Quraan has changed like the Bible.  When I checked their claims, I burst out laughing.  Their total ignorance was too shocking for words.  Not to mention their lack of knowledge about the rules of Arabic language.  they collected the old kufi prints and handwritten collections of the Quraan of the early days that are so beautiful and such an important & precious possession of history, and they have picked out the slight differences of handwritten spellings and punctuation marks in accordance with Arabic grammar as what they call it "variations in the Quraan."  For example I could write the word 'Kufi' as qaf wow fay yeh, or I could write it as qaf fay yeh with a pesh on top of qaf & fay .. makes no difference whatsoever.  Just the way one can spell the words 'realise' also as 'realize' or 'travelling' also as 'traveling' in the English language.  These people don't realise that by doing such things they only furthe expose their own petty minds, illiteracy, jealousy and lack of tolerance.  And then they have the face to consider themselves as the pioneers of compassion. 

Title: Re: Story of Coffee
Post by: Heba E. Husseyn on March 18, 2007, 05:21:16 pm
  believe it or not, there are some such non-Muslim sites (mostly orthodox Christians and Jewish) who propagate what would be the world's greatest lie on the basis of this "imperialistic jealousy."  They purposely try to portray that the Quraan has changed like the Bible.  

You're right ruhi.  There are some who have actually stooped that low out of sheer desperation and frustration.  The superb original preservation of the Quran makes them angry, jealous and aggressive.  They want to lash out.  Also, Islam being the fastest growing religion in the world is intolerable for them.  Truth always hurts, that's no secret.  Beware of one such hate site I've seen.  It's  They go about their hate campaign in a very discreet & cunning way so that a simple person won't suspect anything.  I would request everyone to be warned that this is a site being run by Christian fundamentalists who are tying to convert Muslims to christianity.  So, beware of this site.  Of course, there are other similar ones too.  Be very careful of what you browse on the internet these days.[/b]

Title: Re: Story of Coffee
Post by: Zeynab on March 18, 2007, 05:36:57 pm
Right on, everyone.  In fact, I had a run-in with one such creature recently from that very site pointed out by Heba.  The stupendous and nonsensical lies he spoke left my head spinning like a top.  First I thought he was genuinely ignorant.  Then I realized he was both ignorant and a manipulative liar with the most bloody-minded attitude I ever came across.  I gave him a blunt rejoinder and told him to stay out of my mailbox. 

InshAllah, I'll be posting information taken directly from history about the scrupulously careful preservation of the Glorious Quraan .. the only original Divine words available today.  Alhamdulilah .. Praise be to Allah, and peace & love on His last messenger and seal of the prophets, Muhammad bin Abdullah bin Abdel Muttalib. 

Title: Re: Story of Coffee
Post by: Ruhi_Rose on April 02, 2009, 04:39:50 am
Here's a really interesting article on some of the health benefits of coffee. 

I was debating whether to post this piece here or at the health board.  Then I decided to put it alongside this wonderful write-up on the story of coffee.  Maybe I'll put a link to it at the health board.

Filtering the Facts: 7 Fresh Perks from Coffee
Yahoo! Lifestyle - Eating well (


Coffee lovers may be raising their cups at the growing stream of positive news about their favorite drink. For healthy adults, having two or three cups of joe daily generally isn’t harmful and it may have health perks. Some recent findings even suggest that coffee may help lower the risk of diseases like diabetes and heart disease.

A cup of coffee contains about 1 gram of soluble fiber, the type that can help lower cholesterol, according to a recent report in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry.

Recent Harvard studies, involving more than 193,000 people, found that regular coffee drinkers had a significantly lower risk of type 2 diabetes than those who abstained. The more they drank, the lower their risk.

Despite coffee’s reputation for being bad for the heart, recent epidemiologic studies haven’t found a connection; some even suggest coffee can be protective. A study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition reported that healthy people 65 and over who drank four or more cups of caffeinated beverages daily (primarily coffee) had a 53 percent lower risk of heart disease than non-coffee-drinkers.

Coffee has more antioxidants per serving than blueberries do, making it the top source of antioxidants in our diets. Antioxidants help quell inflammation, which might explain coffee’s effect in inflammation-related diseases like diabetes and heart disease.

Magnesium found in coffee might help make cells more sensitive to insulin (increased insulin sensitivity results in healthier blood glucose levels).

Caffeine seems to have its own beneficial effects; the diabetes studies found that those who drank regular coffee had lower risks of the disease than decaf drinkers.

Caffeinated-coffee drinking has also been linked with reduced risk of Parkinson’s disease, gallstones, cirrhosis and liver cancer.

Bottom Line:

For most people who enjoy coffee, there’s no reason to cut back; there may even be health benefits. However, for some, exceeding one’s caffeine tolerance—which varies—can cause irritability, headache and insomnia. The temporary rise in heart rate and blood pressure could cause problems for people with heart disease, and new moms should be aware that caffeine passes into breast milk.

Title: Re: Story of Coffee
Post by: Zeynab on April 05, 2009, 01:33:14 am
As a coffee lover, I absolutely adore your post sister ruhi :)  The additional pleasant surprise was that coffee also contains anti-oxidants.  I didn't know that ..

Title: Re: Story of Coffee
Post by: Ruhi_Rose on April 07, 2018, 11:35:42 pm

Salams, peaceful and hey my dear folks.   We’re having a chat session at our Islamic community centre next week InshAllah on the introduction of coffee from medieval Muslim world to medieval Europe and elsewhere.    I’ve already printed this thread, most importantly, the original post, for details.   If someone can make a summary consisting of a paragraph or so, would be great as we need to first introduce briefly this very interesting topic before getting on to a detailed chat.

Title: Re: Story of Coffee
Post by: Heba E. Husseyn on April 07, 2018, 11:42:56 pm

WaíSalam and sure me sis :)   I can make it 2 average to short paragraphs.  One paragraph would be a bit of a crunch for a topic as vast as this.

A little confusion as to where coffee was discovered first,  Ethiopia or Yemen.  Whichever, it was around the 6th century.  Then it spread to the rest of the Arabian peninsula.  At this time coffee beans were crushed and eaten and its berries used for medicinal purposes.   From the Arabian Peninsula coffee spread to Turkey and the rest of the northern Middle East across Syria, Palestine and Lebanon.   By 1400s it began being consumed as a drink throughout the Muslim world.   The new discovery of roasting seeds for a better taste began a century earlier, in the 1300s.   In early 1500s when the Ottoman governor Ozdemir Pasha was posted in Yemen,  he fell in love with coffee.   When he returned to Istanbul, it became the most popular drink for guests of his palace.   An additional area within the palace was turned into a ďcoffee shopĒ and  the palace coffee-maker was one of the most important members of the palace staff.  Raw coffee beans were roasted in thick based pans, then ground (pounded with heavy stone slab often used in medieval kitchens as there were no electric blenders or grinders), and then boiled and filtered in jugs.
Europeans got to know about coffee as late as 1615 when merchants from Venice discovered it in the coffee shops of Istanbul and carried it to Europe.  But Italyís first coffee shop opened much later in 1640.  Prior to that coffee was sold at roadsides by lemonade vendors.   Then the Parisians and Londoners brought coffee in their cities in mid 1640s and early 1650s, respectively.   Coffee rapidly began to open in major European cities and also served as venues for social gathering.   A little later in the early 1700s, European voyageurs  sailing around the globe in search of treasures (often looted) setup coffee plantations in various parts of south-east Asia.

An early coffee shop, Istanbul.

Title: Re: Story of Coffee
Post by: Ruhi_Rose on April 07, 2018, 11:50:31 pm

Exactly what I needed, SubhanAllah.

Thanko meo sis  :)    Big help! and lovely pic.

Title: Re: Story of Coffee
Post by: Heba E. Husseyn on April 07, 2018, 11:52:29 pm

Okay, so what about the latest ruckus on roasted coffee beans containing acrylamide which is a carcinogen and researchers are demanding Starbucks to put a warning label on their coffee cups?   The idea of roasting the coffee beans is responsible for producing acrylamide within the beans.  That poses to be a tough problem to surmount,  ha?  Sis Ruhi, also try to touch this topic for the info of all participants of the chat group.  Tell us what they think.

Title: Re: Story of Coffee
Post by: Ruhi_Rose on April 07, 2018, 11:55:26 pm

InshAllah, indeed I will Sis.  Actually my husband was mentioning this just a couple of hours ago. Not that we have too much to say on it.  Even the expert researchers  apparently donít seem to know a whole lot.   
If any of you guys have any helpful contents on coffee linked to acrylamide, please put it up.   I would take that too.

Title: Re: Story of Coffee
Post by: N. Truth Seeker on April 08, 2018, 12:02:03 am

Yes Sisters Heba and Ruhi, weíre also hearing of the reputation of this very delicious beverage getting tarnished with talks of its link with acrylamide.  However, rest assured, itís not a new issue.  Only the discovery is a bit new.   Yet, with so many coffee lovers in all of my family and extended family, we had to halt with a screech.  Some have switched over to tea until we find out more or until our apprehension lessens.  So yes,  weíre trying to get as much information we can from websites and some of our professional friends who might know something useful. 

What kinda information would you prefer to know and take with you?

Title: Re: Story of Coffee
Post by: Ruhi_Rose on April 08, 2018, 12:03:54 am

I agree with you br. TS.  Thatís a very wise step.   Iím interested to know if coffee can be brewed (boiled) without roasting for a safer option.  Or, are there any spices that can enhance the taste of unroasted brewed coffee as a substitute for roasting?   

Title: Re: Story of Coffee
Post by: N. Truth Seeker on April 08, 2018, 12:09:17 am

Unfortunately no sister.  From everything I’ve learned thus far, roasting coffee has no substitute if you want to keep the same flavor and taste.  There’s no other method of extracting the flavor from raw coffee beans other than roasting.   Furthermore, the roasted beans need to be ground prior to brewing.  If left unroasted, it’s awfully difficult to grind them;  they’re like tiny bits of rocks.   Brewed raw coffee beans might be used for certain medicinal purposes, but not for preparing the coffee we are used to.   When it comes to culinary skills on the preparation of coffee, it’s the process of roasting that develops that superb aroma we love, and it’s the process of roasting that makes the beans brewable and thus consumable.  In fact some fussy coffee makers insist that after roasting, the beans should be left aside for at least 2 days, preferably 3, prior to brewing because the beans release their fragrance gradually which peaks to its fullest in 48 hours.   But others are of the opinion that waiting that long between roasting and brewing isn’t necessary.  Brewing  immediately after roasting is more or less fine.  However, in either case, roasting is indispensable and this is the process that causes the formation of acrylamide which cannot be removed from the roasted beans either   :(


Title: Re: Story of Coffee
Post by: Heba E. Husseyn on April 08, 2018, 12:11:23 am

Hummm, well  analysed,  brother TS.   Brewing raw green coffee beans without roasting is no good.  Whatever flavor or fragrance you may get from the stock of raw coffee beans will be totally different from the coffee we know. 

Title: Re: Story of Coffee
Post by: Zeynab on April 08, 2018, 12:18:39 am

Yeah this acrylamide thing is worrisome .. though as brother TS rightly said, itís been there is coffee for centuries.   As sister Heba highlighted in her summary, the trend of roasting the beans to drink it as a beverage came about in the 1300s in the ME.   Thatís  700 years ago. Acrylamide has for sure been in those delicious roasted beans since then.   But itís begun making everyone uneasy now with all those analytical details emerging from various studies.   In my opinion, for those who take more than 2 cups a day, cut it down to just that much.   Two should be okay though as Sister Ruhi remarked, the so-called experts donít seem  to know the specifics themselves.  So, letís presume 2 cups to be safe and leave the rest on Allah Almighty.  Only HE knows best.    We can only suggest that since roasted coffee beans has been the method for 7 centuries without any glaring or perceptive links to cancer in humans, should convey to us that very moderate consumption isnít worrisome, InshAllah, especially considering the fact that in the 3rd millennium we are surrounded with chemicals and parabens that are still more harmful and in larger amounts in just about every sphere of life.   

Also very true as brother said, though the panic over acrylamide in coffee is  recent, the issue of acrylamide isnít.  Researchers are quite sure that acrylamide in certain amounts has been present in different kinds of food ever since the earliest history of cooking.   At present, people are exposed to acrylamide almost daily through smoking or secondhand smoke, as well as cosmetics, toiletries, cleaners and various other  household products.  Certain quantities of acrylamide is also found in a wide range of baked and fried foods such as cookies and potato chips which are most commonly consumed by children.


Title: Re: Story of Coffee
Post by: Ruhi_Rose on April 08, 2018, 12:22:35 am

So grateful to you guys for all the logical information thatís helping much. 

Okay,  now lemme ask, is there any difference between instant and regular coffee in terms of health & safety?    And any idea what level of acrylamide might be considered safe or safer?

Title: Re: Story of Coffee
Post by: N. Truth Seeker on April 08, 2018, 12:30:09 am

Instant coffee is dried and dehydrated through freezing leaving behind soluble granules containing the compounds of brewed coffee.  Hence, unlike regular coffee, you simply add water to instant coffee.  Supposedly the flavor is milder than regular coffee.  A carefully brewed regular coffee is said to have a stronger, sweeter flavor.  But unless one is a coffee connoisseur (or letís say a coffee addict, lol), such a difference is negligible.  Rather, a normal coffee drinker would prefer instant coffee.   Regular coffee is generally used in coffee making machines (also referred to as ďfilteredĒ coffee).  The difference between the two is only in regard to antioxidants which isnít an important issue.  As far as I know, instant coffee is higher in antioxidants.  But then again, we can get antioxidants from fruits and veggies too.  So no need to get hung up on that.  The real problem is the presence of acrylamide that comes from roasting.

Difference in terms of health n safety?   Again, unfortunately very little :(  In fact, instant coffee which is far more commonly purchased by households contains greater quantity of acrylamide. Studies show level of acrylamide in instant coffee approximately 358 microg/kg  and in roasted coffee 179 microg/kg.   Yet it leads us nowhere. 

The only conclusion we can arrive at :  Workplace exposure to large amounts of acrylamide can cause nerve damage.  It can cause cancer in animals in very high doses.  But they are still not sure how little or how much is safe for human consumption on a daily basis.  .  But even if those guys touted a ďsafeĒ amount, it would basically be a presumption which could be retracted any time in future.  Accurate facts on such issues are only known to Allah Almighty alone, none else.
Studies in animals have quite consistently shown that acrylamide causes cancer when eaten.  But the doses given to animals have been 1000Ė100,000 times larger than the amounts humans are exposed to through diet (cruel for the poor animals, isnít it?).  Moreover, it has also been observed that the chemical process (metabolism) of this substance within the human body differs compared to animals.  Metabolism may also differ from person to person in humans.   But there isnít sufficient research to confirm the precise safety level of acrylamide for humans through food nor its exact safety status.   Studies conducted have been few and their results inconsistent.

Thus the coffee-panic because latte lovers have at least 4 or 5 cups daily.   In my opinion, on the safer side, they better cut it down to two cups .. be it instant coffee or regular.   Or simply switch to tea.

Title: Re: Story of Coffee
Post by: Ruhi_Rose on April 08, 2018, 12:32:49 am

Thanks a bundle again brother. 
So much was abuzz until last year on the health benefits of coffee .. that it helps to reduce the chances of developing dementia, heart diseases, type-2 diabetes and cancers.  And now it’s being touted as a source of cancer because of acrylamide from roasting coffee beans.  What the heck?   

So .. there’s no method for filtering out the acrylamide from the beans?

Title: Re: Story of Coffee
Post by: N. Truth Seeker on April 08, 2018, 12:35:23 am


So .. there’s no method for filtering out the acrylamide from the beans?

No  :(  no such methods known yet.  However, referring to Sister’s Zeynab’s comment, we can calm ourselves by presuming that the detrimental effect is linked to the dose of the chemical (acrylamide in this case) rather than the chemical itself.   Each time we drink coffee, we certainly do expose ourselves to this harmful chemical, but perhaps in very negligible amounts that won’t add up over the long term, InshAllah, as long as we consume coffee moderately.

Title: Re: Story of Coffee
Post by: Ruhi_Rose on April 08, 2018, 12:51:37 am

Plenty of thanks from my husband and me, brother TS, for a very honest and educational clarification on this subject. 

Title: Re: Story of Coffee
Post by: N. Truth Seeker on April 08, 2018, 12:54:42 am

Very welcomed both of you, sister and brother.     
Allah Almighty bless.