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Edited by Jasmine Ryu Won Kang

I am someone who does not go a day without drinking coffee. Whether I am making it at home or getting it from a coffee shop, I will always ensure that I have at least one cup a day. Ever since I began drinking coffee, I have received many different reactions from those around me. Some people have told me that I am a typical university student, whereas others have told me that caffeine is unhealthy and dehydrating, so I thought I would help us all by debunking these myths while also sharing some of my coffee favorites, such as some local cafés, and what goes into my daily cup. 

1. Is Coffee Actually Unhealthy? 

Over the years I have read a lot about the effects that caffeine can have on a person. I understood that caffeine can provide someone with more energy and even make a person jittery but what I was seeing online sounded more extreme. I was reading this article that said that coffee can cause a growth stunt, heart issues, and even cancer. Reading all of this made me pretty nervous to continue drinking coffee but I soon came to realize that as long as I had it in moderation and not go extreme that it was all going to be ok. Coffee may not be as nutritious as a glass of water but just like with every other food and beverage, if you have it in moderation and do not have too much of it at a time, then most harmful effects are less likely to happen. This is why I try to stick to 1-2 coffees in one day instead of having 5-6. If you are concerned about the effects of caffeine on your own body, it is always best to consult a medical professional instead of believing everything that is said online. That being said, if you drink an appropriate amount of coffee then you are less likely to have any negative effects. 

2. My Daily Cup

In my time at university, I have seen many types of coffee drinkers. I have seen people who will drink their coffee black and then I see others who want to enjoy the energizing effects of caffeine while not actually tasting the coffee so they will add tons of flavors and sweeteners to their cup. I see myself as being in-between as I do not like my coffee black but at the same time, I do not want it too sweet either. My daily cup includes one Nespresso pod with foamed unsweetened vanilla almond milk. Drinking foamed milk at home makes me feel like I am at a café without paying an expensive price for it, and there are many affordable foamers and coffee machines that you can get delivered right to your door. Having coffee you like at home will prevent you from buying coffee out too many times. 

3. Local Coffee Shops

As much as I do like making coffee at home, I like to treat myself to a coffee out too. Like a lot of students my age, I love going to Starbucks and trying out their fun drinks but since we are in the midst of a pandemic where businesses are struggling, I thought I would share my favorite local coffee shops that should be supported during this time. In the downtown Toronto area, you can always catch me going to Goldstruck and 5 Elements Espresso Bar in the Yorkville area,  Balzac’s in the Distillery District, and Moonbean Coffee Company in Kensington Market. When I am at these places my go-to order is always a latte with almond milk, but these places also offer other interesting options such as a cold brew, maple-flavored lattes (very Canadian), and teas if you are not a coffee person. 

Whether you drink coffee while studying or just to enjoy, let’s all drink in moderation while supporting local businesses at the same time. If you are reading this, then see this as your sign to get up and make a cup of coffee or have an excuse to leave your home and buy one. Happy coffee drinking!

Zoë Grossman

U Toronto '22

Zoë is a fourth-year student majoring in Political Science and Sociology. With a huge passion for world events and culture, Zoë is excited to share her ideas and thoughts with a new audience. In her free time, you can catch her listening to music, spending time on Netflix, and at a local coffee shop.
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