Is Instant Coffee Healthy?

Is Instant Coffee Healthy?

There are many different types of coffee. Latte’s, Cappuccino’s, even Frappuccinos. One of the best things about coffee is that first sip which sends a jolt through your mind. Like a kickstart. Even when I’m busy, I need to make sure I have a cup of coffee in hand. And when you’re on the run, you may not have enough time to brew a cup the traditional way.

A traditional drip coffee brewer can stall your day for a couple of minutes. And a line at Starbucks, or Dunkin, can take forever. I wish there was a way to make coffee instantly. Oh wait, there is! It is called Instant Coffee. Instant Coffee? Instant Coffee, just like that. Is instant coffee healthy? Or is it safe, with that needed kick? What is Instant Coffee?

Is Instant Coffee Healthy?: What is Instant Coffee?

A close up view of coffee in a cup.
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The first known innovation of Instant Coffee was a long time ago, in the late 19th century. The Instant Coffee process was patented by a Frenchman named Alphonese Allais, in 1881. Over the next 30 years, two other men would find their own ways to make it. It only took David Strang, an innovator from New Zealand, nine years to develop his instant coffee process, known as the Dry Hot Air process. There would be two other instant coffee methods, the latter of the two the most successful.

A man by the name of Georg Constant Louis Washington in 1910 launched the first commercially available instant coffee. Simple and effective, and after mass production, he signed a contract with the U.S. military to supply them with this product. During the 1930’s American Soldiers drank instant coffee, and when they returned from overseas they continued their love for it. Today, the instant coffee market is valued above $30 billion… holy cow! It is easy to use, cheap, and can be transported across the world without losing its value, there’s no slowing it down.

Instant coffee is a mixture that as said earlier, is very easy to use. So, how do you use it?

How do you make Instant Coffee?

Coffee beans are used to make coffee, that’s a no brainer. Depending on what you prefer, coffee beans can be expensive. These “superior” coffee beans are not wasted on instant coffee. The coffee beans used are the bottom of the bunch, saving money in production for the manufacturers. Me or you would never want to buy the coffee beans used to make Instant Coffee. They are at the bottom of the barrel. Cheapness comes at a cost, which is why a $50 steak tastes much better than a $5 one.

This is the same for Instant Coffee, as it doesn’t taste nearly as good as regular coffee, and is bland and dark, not delicious and slightly acidic. Aside from the benefits cheapness has on the manufacturers, it is implied if one is making instant coffee, they don’t necessarily care about the quality of the taste. Only the performance. 

When manufacturers buy these inferior coffee beans, they somewhat brew them before being packaged. They roast them like regular coffee beans before grinding them finely. Then, pressurized water is combined with the grounds to dissolve. Now that these grounds are wet, they must be dried. This can be done by either spraying or freezing. Spraying entails hot air being forced against the droplets, forming into the fine, dry powder that is instant coffee. Freezing is simply freezing the coffee extract before dicing it up into smaller pieces and then drying. And boom, instant coffee. Then, obviously, packaged and shipped out to numerous buyers.

Although people like Instant Coffee for its cheapness and ease of use, it shouldn’t be substituted in favor of a traditional coffee drip brewer or whatever machine you use at home. It should be used in a rush when one can’t brew a cup.

To make a cup of Instant Coffee, simply take about a spoonful (or more) of the powder and stir it into your cup. It’s that easy. Just keep stirring until it is completely liquid. This easy to use process is a favorite for campers out in the wilderness. It may not be as delightful as a traditional cup of coffee, but it gets the job done.

Why would you drink Instant Coffee?

I believe you should only drink instant coffee if you are either in a rush or out in the wilderness. If you had time at home and were looking to consume coffee, I wouldn’t know why one would favor bland and disgusting instant coffee instead of traditional coffee. Sure, it is far more convenient. But, it is far inferior to a traditional cup. All one would be doing by making instant coffee is saving five minutes for an unpleasant experience.

Is Instant Coffee Safe?

So, is it safe? Well, yes and no. Instant coffee has a massive amount more Acrylamides in it. Acrylamides is known to increase the risk of a couple types of cancer and should not be taken lightly. One cup a day won’t hurt you, but overconsumption can definitely lead down a dark road.

Acrylamide is also found in regular coffee beans, but far less than in Instant Coffee. It can affect the nervous system and as mentioned earlier, increase the risk of a couple types of cancer. But what scientists and researchers believe is that it is not harmful in Instant Coffee. They proclaim it is safe. In fact, Instant Coffee has all of the same health benefits as traditional coffee. So, is Instant Coffee healthy? Yes. Just don’t drink 3 cups a day for the rest of your life. If you want instant coffee, try to find the best instant coffee you can find.

Written by: Charles Draper

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