Life Is Short: Enjoy Coffee!

Enjoy coffee life is shortIf you are a coffee lover you can be excused for being confused over conflicting reports about its benefits, or lack of them.

Now, an article distributed by French news agency AFP cites studies showing that it is generally harmless to health and may protect against a range of illnesses according to studies published in recent years.

In February, this year a committee of independent experts from the US government every five years recommendations for dietary guidelines in the United States, noted that most of the time the coffee is not harmful to health.

“We have examined all studies and nothing indicates harmful effects of coffee on health, with moderate consumption of three to five cups a day” or a maximum of 500 milligrams of caffeine, says Miriam Nelson, a professor of nutrition at Tufts University Boston, and a member of the committee.

“In fact, we found a decreased risk of cardiovascular disease, Parkinson’s, diabetes and some cancers”, prostate and breast cancer, she said in an interview with AFP. “The results are solid and is good news for people who drink coffee,” says Professor Nelson.

What the committee found when analyzing various studies is that daily drinking three to five cups of coffee does not have any negative consequences on the health of the general population.

Tom Brenna, professor of nutrition and of chemistry at Cornell University in New York, who is also a member of the committee says s, however, not exaggerate the benefits of coffee, since its action mechanism is unknown.

“It would be a bad idea to tell people that coffee could cure cancer,” he says. What the committee found when analyzing various studies is that “daily drinking of three to five cups of coffee does not have any negative consequences on the health of the general population. This drink looks as if it could even have protective effects,” he adds.
However, pregnant women should limit, as a precaution, caffeine intake to 200 milligrams a day. He explains that no study shows that coffee is related to premature births.
For Professor Nelson there should also be more studies on the effects of caffeinated beverages, popular among teenagers and young adults, to determine toxicity levels of caffeine.

She also emphasizes the risk of consuming extra calories, especially in America, where usually cream or sugar is added to coffee.

Both scientists say the benefits of coffee, could be explained by antioxidants such as polyphenols, also present in red wine and cocoa. The coffee grains contain over a thousand different molecules, beyond caffeine.

This could explain the results of a recent survey of 25,000 men and women in South Korea, which shows that people who drink three to five cups a day have cleaner arteries, with less Cholesterol plaque responsible for cardiovascular disease .

By contrast, the coffee does have a preventive effect against Parkinson’s disease, observed in a 2000 study that clearly shows the role of caffeine in some receptors in the brain, says the professor Brenna.

Also, some studies showed an association between coffee and a lower incidence of Alzheimer’s disease or multiple sclerosis.

Studies of researchers from Harvard University in 2011 show a 20% reduction in the risk of depression in women who drink at least four cups of decaffeinated coffee a day. Another, published in 2006, conducted among 90,000 women in the United States, shows a relative reduction in risk of becoming diabetic drinking two to three cups of coffee per day, whether or not decaffeinated. Even an investigation by US Institutes of Health (NIH) conducted among 400,000 men and women of 50-71 years in the United States shows a 10% reduction in mortality from all causes except cancer among people who drink several cups of coffee per day.

Nicaragua’s Canal: Show Us The Money

First, this isn’t a new idea. It’s been around since before the Panama Canal. I have said before that I have serious doubts that it will ever happen. First, no one ever consulted the Nicaraguan people, just as no one ever consulted the Panamanians when the US created the Canal Zone and built the Panama Canal. The Nicaraguan people oppose their President’s give-away. Second, environmentalists fear an environmental disaster and there have been no environmental studies to alleviate their concerns. Third, if the intention is to compete with Panama, how do you really compete with a Canal that has an existing infrastructure of ports, international banking, maritime registry, bunkering and services, and the second largest free zone in the world with additional free zones under construction? Fourth, and most importantly, the numbers don’t make sense.

Now comes this from the Administrator of the Panama Canal …

April 14th, 2015 ( The administrator of the Panama Canal, Jorge Luis Quijano, said Monday that Chinese state builders are wary of becoming involved in the Nicaraguan canal project, also known as the Nicaragua Interoceanic Grand Canal, and that Chinese state companies have no interest in financing the project.

“I just came from China and builders told me that no state company is interested in financing the project,” Quijano said during the opening session of the XII Panama Maritime Conference in Panama City, Panama, where more than 400 maritime industry leaders have been convened since Thursday.

Quijano also added that Dutch Prime Minister, Mark Rutte, expressed his country’s skepticism of the Nicaraguan project and its commitment to the Panama Canal.

Quijano said such a large investment (the developer behind the Nicaraguan Canal says it is raising $50 billion) is not justifiable as the Panama Canal is already capable of handling the vast majority of the world’s interoceanic shipping needs, and its capacity will only increase after an ambitious expansion project already underway is completed.

Panama began the expansion project in 2007 with an investment of $5.2 billion. The project was scheduled to be completed in October 2014, but several setbacks, including disagreements with the primary contractor, have pushed the estimated completion of the project to the first quarter of 2016.

The expansion will allow the Panama Canal to handle container ships with nearly three times the capacity as today, up to 13,200 containers per ship.

Uneasiness has clouded The Nicaraguan canal project since Hong Kong Nicaragua Canal Development Group, or HKND, a supposedly private company headed by Chinese entrepreneur Wang Jing, won a no-bid concession in June 2013 to design, build, and operate the canal.

To date, HKND has not disclosed the names of any investors who are funding the canal.

Despite this, Wang, nor the Nicaraguan government, have expressed any concerns that they will be able to obtain the financing necessary to complete the project.

In an interview with Reuters last year, Wang said there were a number of ways in which he and his company will be able to raise capital, adding that the project “doesn’t require $50 billion in cash

“A large portion of the $50 billion is actually in materials, including cement and steel. We have signed contracts with a well-known steelworks and a cement plant to jointly build facilities in Nicaragua. What these plants produce will be used to build the canal,” Wang said, adding that the arrangement would provide tax breaks and allow his group to control steel and cement prices.

At the time of the interview, Wang said he had so far invested some $100 million of his own cash, and that he “will keep investing until the project succeeds.”

The Nicaraguan canal project has sparked dire warnings from environmentalists, Despite the Nicaraguan government’s claim that canal construction will avoid delicate environmental areas and indigenous territories.

What effect the canal will have on Lake Nicaragua, the largest lake in Central America through which the route will pass, is of particular concern as it’s a key source of fresh water.