Sip Your Way to a Longer Life: The Ikarian Morning Drink Secret

Imagine living on a beautiful Greek island in the Mediterranean, where your chances of living into your 90s is more than 10 times higher than in the U.S. The secret to this remarkable longevity is surprisingly simple – it’s what the Greek islanders, known as Ikarians, drink first thing in the morning.

Researchers have been investigating the habits of the Ikarians, who are the longest-lived people in the world. Their studies point to Ikarians’ morning habit of drinking boiled Greek coffee as a significant factor in their exceptional life expectancy. This traditional beverage boosts heart health, which is vital for living a long, healthy life.

So, what makes boiled Greek coffee so special? Let’s find out.

The Power of Boiled Greek Coffee

The researchers studying the Ikarians’ coffee consumption habits discovered that about nine out of ten of them drank boiled Greek coffee every day. Compared to those who consumed other kinds of coffee, the people who enjoyed this specific type of beverage experienced better blood vessel function. This held true even for people with high blood pressure – boiled Greek coffee consumption was associated with improved endothelial function without adversely impacting blood pressure levels.

“Boiled Greek type of coffee, which is rich in polyphenols and antioxidants and contains only a moderate amount of caffeine, seems to gather benefits compared to other coffee beverages,” says researcher Gerasimos Siasos.

What Are Polyphenols and Antioxidants?

Polyphenols are naturally occurring compounds found in plant foods, such as fruits, vegetables, cereals, and beverages, including coffee. They are vital in providing our bodies with numerous health benefits, such as reducing inflammation and helping fight against diseases. Polyphenols can be broadly categorized into four main groups: flavonoids, phenolic acids, stilbenes, and lignans.

Antioxidants are molecules that prevent the oxidation of other molecules in the body. Oxidation is a chemical reaction that can produce free radicals, leading to cell damage. Antioxidants neutralize free radicals, protecting our bodies from potential harm.

Health Benefits of Polyphenols and Antioxidants in Boiled Greek Coffee

The polyphenols and antioxidants found in boiled Greek coffee are key to its numerous health benefits:

1. Improved Heart Health. The polyphenols and antioxidants in boiled Greek coffee can help reduce inflammation, which often leads to heart disease. They can also improve blood vessel function, lowering the risk of heart attacks and strokes.

2. Reduced Diabetes Risk. Polyphenols in coffee can help regulate blood sugar levels, reducing the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

3. Protection Against Neurodegenerative Diseases. Antioxidants in boiled Greek coffee can protect brain cells from damage and help prevent neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.

4. Enhanced Digestion. Polyphenols in coffee can aid digestion by stimulating the production of beneficial gut bacteria.

5. Boosted Immune System. Antioxidants in boiled Greek coffee support a strong immune system by protecting cells from damage and reducing inflammation.

6. Weight Management. Evidence suggests that polyphenols in boiled Greek coffee can help with weight management, as they may improve metabolism, inhibit fat absorption, and reduce appetite.

How to Make Boiled Greek Coffee

To enjoy the life-extending benefits of boiled Greek coffee, you can easily make this beverage at home. Here’s a simple recipe:

  1. Add a cup of cold water and a teaspoon of Greek coffee (finely ground) to a briki (a small Greek coffee pot) or a small saucepan.

  2. Stir the mixture well until the coffee grounds are dissolved.

  3. Place the briki or saucepan over medium-low heat and let the coffee slowly come to a boil. Do not stir.

  4. As the coffee starts to boil, foam will form at the top. Remove the briki or saucepan from the heat right before the foam overflows.

  5. Pour the coffee into a cup, ensuring the foam is evenly distributed among the cups.

  6. To get the full, authentic Greek experience, serve your boiled Greek coffee with a glass of cold water and a sweet treat like a piece of baklava or a loukoumi (Greek delight).

Now that you know the secret to the Greek islanders’ longevity, why not incorporate boiled Greek coffee into your morning routine? Raise your cup to a long and healthy life, just like the Ikarians.