The Science Behind the Business of Healthy Coffee

Healthcare executive, scientific formulator for The ROOT Brands, patent innovator and author Dr. Christina Rahm talks about her latest beneficial brew release.

In the world of Starbucks, Dunkin’ and the thousands of coffee shops and barista-driven specialty cafes on most street corners around the world, coffee continues to be a part of our everyday lives. A warm drink which was a simple early-riser morning concoction (Folgers and Maxwell House) for my parents while growing up, coffee is now an ongoing daily staple to keep us energized, focused and mentally driven to get through our day. 

When I was a child, I was told if I drank coffee, it would “stunt my growth,” so my sister, brother and I never considered drinking it. In contrast, children today wait in the Starbucks line, behind their parents, ordering tall caramel macchiatos. With that said, I stayed away from coffee for years, though during college it became a habit in support of those late-night study sessions, and I’m still a fan for my afternoon pick-me-up. According to Craft Coffee Spot, in the United States alone, the average coffee drinker consumes 3 cups per day, and the country consumes an average of 179 billion cups annually, with that number consistently increasing. 

Luckily, coffee is a rich source of antioxidants, which helps in preventing damage caused by free radicals (unstable atoms which can harm cells, causing illness and aging). Coffee also contains bioactive compounds, including caffeine, chlorogenic acid and trigonelline (important quality indicators of coffee), which have shown promising results in improving brain function and reducing the risk of neurodegenerative diseases. Coffee increases dopamine and norepinephrine, which are two neurotransmitters known to boost alertness, mood and physical performance. Coffee may lower the risk of Type 2 diabetes, as well as reduce inflammation and improve insulin sensitivity. The drink possesses a protective effect on the liver, reducing the risk of liver diseases such as cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma (liver cancer). It also reduces the risk of colorectal and prostate cancer, due to its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Research conducted in 2018 showed drinking coffee regularly could reduce cardiovascular disease and stroke. Coffee, in its pure form, can be considered healthy—if expansive amounts of sugar, heavy cream and/or other”flavor enhancers” are not added. 

In our wellness-driven world, we consistently hear (or read) about the ingredients in most items we consume, whether it be foods, sweets, soft drinks, juices and or alcohol; what we do not hear about is what’s IN our daily cup of joe. Like processed foods, the unhealthy details are often in the fine print. Just as with coffee products, unhealthy or hidden characteristics are simply unknown. Concerning? I would think so, seeing this is a drink, which, according to the National Institutes of Health , an estimated 154 million adults, or 75% of the U.S. population, consume daily.

So, focusing back on the question: What is in our cup (or cups) of coffee each morning? Well, it all depends on how the beans are processed. Most coffee beans go through natural (sun- or solar-dry method), washed once, or even half-washed (wet method), semi-washed (honey, pulped, natural), and mixed processing. Further, milling, roasting and grinding the coffee beans subsequently come into play. 

Again, there are myriad health benefits to drinking coffee, but there can also be drawbacks to conventionally grown coffees. According to Natural Force, numerous commercial coffees contain health-harming contaminants like mycotoxin (a toxic substance produced by fungus), ochratoxin A (a mycotoxin produced by fungal species) and acrylamide (a chemical which can form during high-temperature processes including roasting coffee beans). Additional contaminants can include polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (chemicals that occur naturally in coal, crude oil and gasoline) and of course pesticides, herbicides and fungicides (used to kill insects, plants and weeds), along with mold, bacteria, fungus and parasites, which can not only cause short-term symptoms like fatigue, weakness and brain fog, but can lead to long-term health consequences. Concisely, conventional coffee is among the most heavily chemically treated foods in the world. In fact, only 3 percent of the coffee available is grown using organic methods, which means 97 percent is not without all those potentially dangerous chemicals. Scary, right?

Fortunately, that minimal 3 percent of healthy coffees available will soon have a new “specialty coffee” alternative on the market: one without damaging, health-harming properties. Just launched, and one of my most recent scientific formulations, is Rahm Roast. Presented by DRC Ventures and available at The ROOT Brands, Rahm Roast is a boutique-brand coffee formulation using proprietary trade secrets to extract toxins, bacteria, parasites and fungus. Considered to be the first of its kind in the specialty coffee genre, Rahm Roast is made with organic, fair trade coffee beans from Guatemala, infused with patent pending, proprietary, Xoted method technologies. In summary, our Xoted method constitutes a multiwashing process designed to remove contaminants and heavy metals. By means of this methodology, the coffee beans are also sprayed with a detoxing formula to remove any additional harmful properties that the multiwashing did not remove. This complex process is designed to remove all unhealthy attributes, and also leads to lower acidity and helps support the original flavor and aroma. 

In extensive coffee processing inspections, Rahm Roast had no detectable mycotoxins, a characteristic often found in commercially processed coffees. Further, this new coffee incorporates properties including bioavailable silica, a trace mineral complex, and vitamin C to guarantee the best possible flavor profile including chocolate, nutty and caramel overtones. 

I am so excited to introduce Rahm Roast as it furthers my initiative and vision to create a healthier, toxin-free environment to better enhance the health and wellness of us all. We hope Rahm Roast will become a popular coffee for those wanting a toxin-free, healthier, “specialty coffee” alternative.