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orange_coffeeThe festive season is nearly upon us and whether you are celebrating Christmas, Hannukah or nothing in particular, this year, do it in style with a cup of coffee that’s got a little oomph added to it.

Adding ingredients other than milk or sugar to coffee is really nothing new and people have been doing it for centuries. For example, we all know you can add chocolate to a cup of coffee for a mochaccino, but what about a pinch of chili powder or event salt in your espresso? Foreign flavours often enhance the coffee's taste profile with great success.

Then there are items such as orange rind, cumin, cinnamon and even mint leaves which have been used in all sorts of coffee drinks in recent years - some with greater success than others. Rumour has it that a shot of fine whiskey added to your favourite filter coffee or espresso is the perfect coffee enhancer, better than any amount of milk or sugar!

So go ahead - be adventurous with your coffee and don't be afraid to experiment with flavours. You might just make a great discovery and change the way you drink your daily brew forever!

coffee_pillsMany people start their days with a piping hot cup of coffee, but few people take the time to think about what could happen when they mix coffee, a stimulant, with the medications they take on a daily basis. While in some cases, the two will have no effect on one another, in others this combination may be deadly.

One of the reasons people do not know the effects that mixing coffee and medication can have on them is that it can be hard to remember what chemical reacts with which substance. To this end, there are just a few rules you should take to heart when combining the two.

The first is that any medications containing ephedrine or pseudoephedrine will increase alertness in the body. When combined with coffee these effects are exaggerated and can leave the person who took them feeling weak, nauseous and even give them heart palpitations. Because ephedrine is such a powerful stimulant, using it in combination with coffee can even cause permanent damage to the heart.

Antibiotics on the other hand break down the caffeine in the human body, which means it will stay in your system for a longer period. If this happens, you may feel anxious, have shaking hands or even be unable to sleep.

If you simply cannot go without coffee, try to substitute medications with homeopathic remedies that will have less adverse effects on your body.

bad_breathIt seems that the one negative thing that many people experience after their morning cup of coffee is bad breath. Also known as coffee breath, this often occurs because of the chemical reaction of coffee with enzymes in the human mouth. However, not every cup of coffee will give your scary breath.

According to Dr Harold Katz, a dentist in Los Angeles, every food will have its own chemical reaction in the human mouth. Because of the sulfur compounds in coffee, the human mouth sometimes smells after ingesting it. The mouth is cleaned by saliva, which is why babies often have such sweet breath. The older you get, the less saliva you produce, and this causes bad breath.

Coffee is a diuretic which means less water in the body. This means less saliva is produced. Add sugar and milk to your coffee and you are practically inviting the bacteria into your mouth for a party.

So, if you want to keep your breath smelling sweet and clean, stick to straight coffee and drink lots of water. Or just carry peppermint gum with you everywhere you go.

Soon you will be able to get a cuppa from Vida's new Mauritius store...

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hevlaOne of the most common complaints that people suffer from is heartburn, and despite its delicious taste, coffee does nothing to remedy the situation. Because the beans are so acidic (and we all know that the darker the roast, the more acidic the coffee is), people often stay away from coffee because it hurts them.

Now there is solution, known as Hevla coffee. This manufacturer has created a cup of coffee that is exceptionally low in acid making it the perfect drink to enjoy for those who can’t stomach acid. This will come as a great piece of news to those who suffer from heartburn, gastritis and other digestive disorders such as ulcers. Now you can really sit back and enjoy your cuppa coffee.

 

 

elephant_coffeeYes folks, you heard right. For those who thought civet coffee was a delicacy, you haven’t seen anything yet. Apparently, the Maldives and Thailand have started serving coffee that comes straight from the elephant’s excretions. Of course, this coffee is thoroughly washed and properly treated to make it safe for human consumption, but nonetheless, it is elephant poop coffee.

Known as Black Ivory beans, these can be bought by the kilo for the very reasonable price of just $1 100. It’s no joke. Pay almost R9000 for a kilo of coffee and you’ll get it straight from the elephant’s digestive system. So what’s the lure? Well, just as in civet coffee, the beans break down somewhat in the elephant’s digestive system and this takes away some of their bitterness.

Afterwards, the coffee beans are processed to ensure they are safe for human consumption, and go from roasting to your cup (if you’re lucky enough to be able to afford it). And how does it taste? Apparently like earthy chocolate mixed with berries and spices.