The early morning is my most favorite time.  I go to the gym around 4 am.  I come home and go for a short run.  Prepare my favorite cup of joe and sit by our beautiful pool.  It is my meditative time, my creative time and my writing time.  I look forward to start each day just to see what I can create and make come true.

As daylight ensues, the animals and birds come alive.  Not unusual to have a gator swimming in the canal and an osprey fishing next to it.  I have a bird feeder and a hummingird feeder which begin to serve breakfast at the first hint of sunlight.  My bees in my hive begin to forage the local area, jetting in and out of the hive.  Our cats begin the hunt for lizards that they will never catch.  The dogs come out every once and awhile to check in, making sure they are not missing anything.  All of this is done with may sacramonial cup of coffee.  It is not that I even “have” to have it.  It is just part of my morning.

One Degree of Change #28: Drink Organic Fair Trade Coffee!

When I was a kid, I remember the commercial with Juan Valdez going to the mountain top to pick the coffee beans.  The tag line for Folger’s coffee was “mountain grown, the richest kind”. I thought to myself, wow, that is some special coffee.  After all my grandmother drank Folgers coffee every morning.  Then I took a geography class and learned that all coffee is mountain grown.   There are two types of beans, Arabica and Robusta.  Arabica is grown in high elevations and is known to have a stronger and better flavor.  Robusta is grown in elevations of 2000 feet or less and produces more beans, but not the flavor.  Most coffee are a mixture of both to keep some coffees more affordable.  I don’t drink coffee because it is cheap, I enjoy the flavor.  So I love the quest to find those coffees to enjoy.  Sorry, Juan Valdez!

In order to continue with my responsible ways, I select coffee that is organic and fair trade.  What’s the difference? Since so many people start their day with coffee and also self medicate with it in the afternoon, the demand is great.  The goal for the big producer is to produce maximum amount ant the lowest cost.  The land is cleared on the mountain tops so the genetically modified coffee plants can grow in full sun.  The crops are sprayed with chemical fertilizers, pesticides and fungicides.  The runoff from the stripped land contaminates our water sources.  The farmers that have to spray the crops are exposed to the chemicals, as well as the workers who actually handle the crops.   And then we get to enjoy the contamination in our cup each morning.  And might I add that the workers in the big production companies are paid poorly as well as the farmers who had to grow all those contaminated beans.  Enjoy!

How can you have a cup of coffee now, without thinking of all that.  Sorry for ruining the java experience for you.  So to convince you to select  and drink organic, fair trade coffee, here are 10 benefits of organic coffee!

  1. Coffee beans have important organic minerals and nutrients, which include naicin, pantothenic acid, riboflavin, magnesium, manganese and potasium.
  2. Protects cognitive health and prevents mental degradation as we age.
  3. Reduces the risk of stroke and in females, reduces heart disease.
  4. There is a 23-50% lower chance of developing diabetes.
  5. Helps to optimize our metabolic efficiency due to the vitamin B sources in the coffee beans.
  6. Caffeine speeds up the metabolism and causes the burning of calories at a higher rate.
  7. Caffeine helps to maximize fitness goals by energizing the body to push through fitness routines a little harder.
  8. Research is still underway, but liver protection is noted in many of the studies that I researched.  An 80% reduction in the chance of developing liver cirrohsis was a noted effect.
  9. Acts as an anticarcenogenic by protecting against two types of cancer: liver and colorectal, which happen to be the 3rd and 4th deadliest types of cancer.
  10. Acts to energize the body and mind which decreases depression, anxiety and mood swings.

Convinced? When shopping for organic you need to look for these terms, 100% USDA Certified Organic and 100% Fair Trade.  Here’s a source for fair trade products: http://fairtradeusa.org. Now you enjoy your cup of black gold (mine is with organic half and half and stevia, so its more like creamy, brown gold) with a clear conscious.

It’s just one degree of change!  

Make that coffee clatch an organic, fair trade one!  

And don’t forget to compost those coffee grounds,

they are the richest kind!

And please remember to drink responsibly!

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