What are the main topics about coffee you should know about?

In this text we will answer the following question: “What are the main topics about coffee I should know about?”. In addition, we will discuss a little about coffee processing residues and what are the chemical components present in coffee.

What are the main topics about coffee you should know about?

The main topics about coffee one should know about are:

  • The main types of coffee and its components.
  • The process of coffee and how it affects its properties.
  • The nutritional profile of coffee
  • The health effects of coffee consumption.
  • The side effects of coffee consumption
  • How much coffee you should consume
  • How long coffee last 
  • how to properly store it

What are the main types of coffee and its components?

The main types of coffee beans are Robusta and Arabica. The caffeine content in robusta coffee typically is approximately 2.2% to 2.8% caffeine, while arabica coffee ranges from 0.6% to 1.2%.

Coffee beans have roughly 43% carbohydrates, 7.5% to 10% proteins, diverse nitrogenous compounds (including 0.6% to 2.8% caffeine), 10% to 15% lipids, 25% melanoidins, 3.7% to 5% minerals, and approximately 6% organic and inorganic acids, along with esters.(1, 2)

What are the processes of coffee and how do they affect its properties?

Grinding and Roasting are the main processes of coffee. The quality of coffee beverages is heavily influenced by the roasting process, during which green coffee beans undergo intricate physical and chemical transformations. 

Notably, the beans undergo significant changes in shape, water content, density, color, and internal structure, all of which can be readily observed after roasting.

Additionally, roasting triggers important chemical reactions such as the Maillard reaction and caramelization reaction. 

Ultimately, these chemical changes have a direct impact on the overall quality of the coffee beverage served. (3)

After coffee beans are fully roasted, they can undergo the process of grinding. This step is essential to enhance the specific surface area of the beans, facilitating the transfer of soluble and emulsifiable compounds from the coffee matrix to water during the brewing process. 

Grinding increases the contact between the coffee particles and water, enabling a more efficient extraction of flavors and substances from the beans. (4)

What is the nutritional profile of coffee?

When we examine the nutritional content of a 1-cup serving of espresso coffee, approximately 100g in weight, we find that it contains a modest calorie range of 0 to 2 kcal. The composition of this coffee variant is well balanced, with 0.2g of fat, 0.1g of protein, 97.8g of water, and 40mg of caffeine.

While coffee is commonly associated with its caffeine content, it encompasses a complex mixture of compounds, including many bioactive substances that elicit diverse physiological effects. 

Within this diverse array, caffeine remains the most renowned component. However, there are numerous other phytochemicals present, with around 1000 identified compounds.

Some of these phytochemicals include phenols like chlorogenic and caffeic acid, lactones, diterpenes such as cafestol and kahweol, as well as niacin and trigonelline, which serves as a precursor to vitamin B3. 

Notably, coffee is also a rich source of vitamin B3, magnesium, and potassium, further contributing to its nutritional value. (5)

What are the health benefits of drinking coffee?

Caffeine, functioning as a stimulant, triggers the release of cortisol and adrenaline in the body, leading to heightened heart rate, breathing rate, and mental alertness. This stimulation also impacts the neural system, fostering enhanced focus and attentiveness.

Furthermore, coffee contains dopamine, acting as a brain booster that aids in improving concentration and alertness. 

In addition to these stimulating properties, coffee exhibits potential in guarding against degenerative disorders, partly due to its neurostimulating, antioxidant, and anti-inflammatory characteristics.

Remarkably, coffee consumption is linked to a significant reduction in the risk of mortality associated with heart disease, respiratory issues, stroke, injuries, accidents, diabetes, and infections. These favorable effects can be attributed to the diverse array of bioactive compounds found in coffee. (2, 6)

What are the side effects of coffee consumption?

Coffee’s impact on cardiovascular health is relatively mild, occasionally causing tachycardia, elevated blood pressure, and sporadic arrhythmia. 

These acute effects are more commonly observed right after coffee consumption, particularly in individuals who may be more vulnerable to such reactions.

Although coffee’s role in contributing to hypertension is generally minor, its influence can be more pronounced in those who consume coffee infrequently. It’s important to note that the effect of coffee on blood pressure varies among individuals

Furthermore, caffeine has been found to slightly decrease calcium absorption in the gastrointestinal tract. (7)

How much coffee should you consume?

The FDA recommends a safe caffeine limit of 400 mg per day, allowing most individuals to consume around 4 to 5 cups of coffee daily. 

Nevertheless, it is essential to recognize that some people may be more sensitive to caffeine due to factors such as genetic makeup, overall health, age, and nicotine habits. 

As a result, individual tolerance levels may vary, and some individuals might need to moderate their coffee intake accordingly to avoid any adverse effects. (8)

How long does coffee last?

Ground coffee typically has a primary shelf life of 12–18 months, as stated by producers. Its secondary shelf life is around 15 days. 

For a longer duration, you can store ground coffee in a sealed container in the refrigerator, lasting up to 2 weeks, or in the freezer for up to 1 month. 

After being brewed, coffee is typically at its best for around 20–30 minutes when left in an open cup. However, if the coffee is black and doesn’t contain milk or creamer, like a pot of plain coffee on a burner, it remains suitable for consumption for up to 4 hours. 

For longer storage, you can transfer brewed coffee to a sealed container and keep it in the refrigerator. When stored this way, it can remain safe to drink for up to 3–4 days, although its taste may not be as satisfactory.

If you mix milk or creamer into your brewed coffee, it is advisable to consume it within 2 hours when left at room temperature. Alternatively, you can store it in a sealed container in the fridge for up to a day or two. (9, 10)

How to store ground coffee?

Ground coffee, with its increased surface area, is susceptible to spoilage if not stored correctly. It is crucial to keep ground coffee in a dark and dry place to maintain its freshness. 

For optimal storage, consider using an opaque air-tight container or a vacuum-sealed package, which helps keep air and moisture at bay.

Opt for opaque containers that reflect most of the light, and if possible, use specialized coffee vaults instead of regular containers. 

In case you purchased coffee in bulk, it’s wise to separate a portion of it into a smaller container, ensuring that the main supply remains protected from daily exposure to air and contaminants.

Freezing ground coffee can extend its shelf life to approximately 1 month when stored in a sealed container. However, it’s essential to note that the flavor might not be as vibrant as fresh coffee. 

The brew extracted from frozen coffee may lack the interesting and complex flavors present in freshly ground beans. (9, 10)

Other FAQs about Coffee that you may be interested in.

What are the side effects of drinking too much green coffee?

What are the sweetest Starbucks coffees?

What causes black coffee to taste?


In this text, we answered the following question: “What are the main topics about coffee I should know about?”. In addition, we discussed a little about coffee processing residues and what are the chemical components present in coffee.


  1. Wei, F., & Tanokura, M. Organic Compounds in Green Coffee Beans. Coffee in Health and Disease Prevention, 149–162. 2015.
  2. Farah, Adriana.  Nutritional and health effects of coffee. 10.19103/AS.2017.0022.14. 2018.
  3. Hu, G., Peng, X., Gao, Y., Huang, Y., Li, X., Su, H., & Qiu, M. Effect of roasting degree of coffee beans on sensory evaluation: Research from the perspective of major chemical ingredients. Food Chemistry, 331, 127329. 2020.
  4. Manzocco, L., Melchior, S., Calligaris, S., & Nicoli, M. C.  Packaging and the Shelf Life of Coffee. Reference Module in Food Science. 2019.
  5. Cano-Marquina, A., Tarín, J. J., & Cano, A.  The impact of coffee on health. Maturitas, 75(1), 7–21. 2013.
  6. Willson, C.  The clinical toxicology of caffeine: A review and case study. Toxicology Reports. 2018.
  7. Bae, J.-H., Park, J.-H., Im, S.-S., & Song, D.-K.  Coffee and health. Integrative Medicine Research, 3(4), 189–191. 2014.
  8. Consumer´s update; Spilling the Beans: How Much Caffeine is Too Much?. FDA/CEDR. Food and Drug Administration Website. http://www.fda.gov/cder/approval/index.htm. 2018.
  9. Manzocco, L., Melchior, S., Calligaris, S., & Nicoli, M. C.  Packaging and the Shelf Life of Coffee. Reference Module in Food Science. 2019.
  10. Adrienne Seitz, Lizzie Streit, How Long Does Coffee Last? Ground, Brewed, Cold Brew, and More, Healthline Media LLC. 2021.

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