Jun 4, 2011

French presses and your health

French press of tribute!

How often do you drink french press coffee? I know some people who drink it every day, stating that it is the only way to drink coffee. I know others who, like me, enjoy a good french press but don’t have the time or desire to make one every day. I know that there are plenty of days when I just brew a full pot of drip coffee because I know I’m going to have multiple cups, or share it with others. This seems to be a good decision on my part because french press coffee is essentially regarded as being the most unhealthy type of coffee for you because french presses don’t use a paper filter. This lack of a filter does two things. First, it allows a tiny amount of oil from the coffee to get into your cup of joe. The amount is very small, but I have actually heard people cite french presses as being “fattening” because of it. The second is that it allows a substance called cafestol to get into the coffee from the beans. Cafestol actually affects the liver and raises your LDL cholesterol, which is the “bad” cholesterol. Again, this is a trace amount, but the paper filters in drip coffee virtually eliminate all traces of cafestol, making drip coffee that much healthier than pressed.

Is this going to change the way you drink coffee? As an occasional French press drinker, nope. I’m still going to enjoy a press with a lazy Sunday brunch once in a while and as a way to enjoy some of my very favorite coffee beans. The small amounts of cafestol and of fat, for that matter, don’t bother me when I’m only having them on occasion. Now if I were a 3 press-a-day person, I might want to reconsider that stand.


4 Comments

  • LOL I can’t wait to show my husband this post! We used only a French Press for over a year and just bought a Tassimo last month. I like to tell people it has changed our lives (well, our mornings for sure) but I guess it was no joke! Who would’ve thought? Our FP is now a weekend treat reserved for special beans. Love your blog!

  • Oh no! You can’t be serious? I am a french press snob! sigh…I guess I’ll have to invest in a larger Italian stovetop coffeemaker.

  • I have been pressing every day thanks for the tip. Bummer, I like pressed coffee.
    How about press first and then filter. The best of two worlds :-)

    What about the metal mesh filters in drip coffee makers. They are most likely not effective for the same reason that the press.

    –j

  • What about filtering the coffee AFTER it’s brewed through a paper filter? Would that eliminate the oils?

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