Coffee. Butter. Oil.
Separately, you won't find any of the ingredients as a part of any traditional and balanced breakfast. But together, these ingredients will make you delicious, frothy and energy sparking caffeinated drink, bulletproof coffee that has rush to become a toast of Silicon Valley.
This sleek-sounding name, coffee drink has been advertised as to provide java lovers a purest form of energy while dropping down unwanted fats that have been following around years.
Sounds more like an outright magical drink.
But is adding the butter and oil to the coffee really a fast track method to improve mental focus while getting in shape?
Let's explore facts from fictions...
What is Bulletproof Coffee?
In its purest form, bulletproof coffee is the blend of brewed coffee, grass-fed, unsalted butter and medium-chain triglyceride (MCT) oil.
What's The Story Behind Bulletproof Coffee?
Dave Asprey is an American entrepreneur and creator of bulletproof coffee and the company, Bulletproof Nutrition, Inc. Before Asprey introduced and monetized the concept to the Western world, the idea of merging the coffee with high-fat solids was hardly known.
The founder, Asprey discovered this butter coffee recipe while trekking down to the Himalayas (Mount Kailash) with a purpose to learn meditation from Buddhist pilgrims since they use to take ritual walks around the base.
Asprey says, while he was stumbled into one-bed room hut, one of the Tibetan hosts gave him a cup of tea blended with yak butter and helped him navigating harsh climates and high altitudes of the mountain.
Within the 5 minutes after drinking the tea, a warmth spread across his body. said Asprey.
He also mentioned;
I felt a mental clarity come on. Everything just felt easier.
Upon his return to the United States, he tinkered with the recipe, replacing coffee with tea, grass-fed butter with yak milk and added coconut oil (touted as Brain Octane Oil by Bulletproof brand).
After a decade, the concept of this magical cup of tea helped Asprey build a multi-million dollars empire around his DIY approach into biology. And since he posted the original recipe on the official website, there's a lot of buzz about "Bulletproof coffee" and it has been circling around pop shops and coffee cultures across the globe.
Just to avoid trademark infringement, this concoction is sometimes called as Butter Coffee, Caveman Coffee in New York City or Grass Fed Coffee in Los Angeles.
Guessing, how to craft bulletproof coffee for yourself?
Here is the exact and step-by-step process to make bulletproof coffee in your home kitchen.
How to Make Bulletproof Coffee (The Right Way)
Preparing a delicious cup of bulletproof isn't the heck of a job, the process is pretty much similar to just the way we make smoothies and fresh juices for the family.
It's up to you whether you want to use the bulletproof or any other brand products specifically, either way is fine, unless you're using outdated products.
In particular, you'll need:
1. Measure Your Beans
For a perfectly consistent cup o'joe every time, it's always recommended to measure your ingredients. You can use something like Hario V60 scale that measures in 0.01 grams increments for maximum coffee snobbery and takes all the guesswork out of equation by providing you with perfect bloom times and pours each time.
For instance, if you're using pour-over coffee brewing method, Hario timer is efficient enough to prevent under or over-extracted coffee.
You can use this scale to measure other ingredients as well, included in your bulletproof coffee recipe, viz. beans to butter.
Pro Tip: To brew an 8 ounces cup of coffee, you'll have to grind about 11.6 grams (41 oz) of whole beans to prepare 2 ½ tablespoons of freshly ground coffee.
Measuring without scale would be very inaccurate. Grinding 4 tablespoons of beans will probably give you 2 tablespoons of ground coffee. Add more beans until you get right amount of ground coffee.
2. Grind your freshly roasted beans
Grind size alone can make a significant difference in making a delicious or a bitter or undrinkable cup of coffee.
To craft the best possible cup, you'll have to make sure, you're getting perfect sized evenly ground particulars. In particular, an adjustable conical burr grinder does a flawless job to produce the size, just the way you want.
Pro Tip: For French Methods, always for aim for "medium-coarse" grind size, and "medium" if you're using Pour-over coffee brewing technique.
3. Choose Your Coffee Strength
Depending on your taste, you can tweak between coffee to water ratio to adjust the strength setting. For instance, if you're fan of strong coffee, add about half cup of ground coffee to 3 cups of water.
Contrarily, you can mix 2 ½ tablespoons of coffee ground to a cup of water (8 ounces) for preparing a slightly lighter cup of java.
Pro Tip: Water temperature matters a lot. For brewing a rich-tasting and more balanced cup of coffee, focus on extracting the coffee grounds at 195 to 205 degrees Fahrenheit.
4. How to Brew the Organic Coffee
You can use a drip coffee maker to brew your coffee, but if you don't have enough one or aren't interested to blow out your full pay cheque, you can use French Press or Pour-over method alternatively. Both of these techniques are competent enough to make you a strong cup of java.
In perspective of this recipe, I'll be using French Press method.
- Boil enough amount of filtered water to fill the French Press.
- Add your coarse grounds to the French Press. It's recommended to start with 1:12 coffee to water ratio. In other words, add 30 grams of coffee to 360 grams of water.
- To begin the brewing process, gently pour twice the amount of water onto the coffee grounds.
- Gently stir the grounds with a chopstick and allow the coffee to bloom for 30 seconds.
- Now pour the remaining water gently, place the lid on the top and let the coffee steep for 4 minutes. Don't guess, wait for exact 4 minutes. Don't plunge just yet.
- Press the plunger filter down. Once done, pour the coffee immediately to the cup(s).
Pro Tip: If it's hard to plunge, it means your coffee grounds are too fine. On the contrary, if the plunger "thunks" immediately at the floor, it means your coffee is too coarse.
As I've already stated, "medium-coarse" grounds works extremely well for French Press coffee. So, always stick to this, if you're serious about deep, full-bodied flavor every time.
Final Step: Blend Ingredients To Make Flavorful Bulletproof Coffee
Don't race out just yet, your delicious butter coffee is just within spitting distance.
So, once you're done brewing the coffee, pre-heat your blender by rinsing it with little hot water and lastly, follow these simple steps to prepare your luscious drink.
- Add 1 cup of your brewed coffee to the blender.
- Add 1-2 tablespoons of MCT oil or Coconut oil.
- Add 1-2 tablespoons of Grass-fed, Unsalted Butter or Ghee.
- Now blitz the ingredients for 20 to 30 seconds until it looks like a creamy latte.
Voila! Your mouth-watering bulletproof coffee is ready. Serve into your favorite cup and enjoy!
Nutritional Value of Bulletproof Coffee
The number of calories in bulletproof coffee, depends on ingredients and their exact concentrations used.
On an average, an 8 oz cup of coffee with 2 tablespoons of unsalted, grass-fed butter and 2 tablespoons of MCT oil will ingest about 300 calories in your body.
However, if you prefer coconut oil over MCT oil, you'll be adding roughly 20 calories for a total of 320 calories per cup.
For Your Information: If you're on a weight loss regimen, nutrition experts suggest consuming no more than 300-400 calories for breakfast specifically.
An easy way for biohacking crowd to slurp down fats and calories is to give up so much sniffing a processed carbohydrate (460 calories!). So, why eating a muffin when you could drink down this metabolic equivalent of supercharged battery acid every morning.
Potential Health Benefits of Drinking Bulletproof Coffee
You might be wondering, while plain black coffee alone is enough to jumpstart your day then why to make a switch to bulletproof coffee?
Besides its great taste, people love blending it every morning because its potential health benefits are too good to be true.
And what's interesting?
There's science behind with cold hard facts and good dash of reasons to back up the bulletproof coffee enthusiasts' claims.
Let's discuss in detail...
1. May promote weight loss through ketogenesis
Majority of weight loss benefits of this butter drink are the mercy of MCT oil.
If you're one of those on ketogenic diet, drinking bulletproof coffee may help you triggering weight loss by the way of ketosis, a metabolic state that sets off by the lack of carbs and kickstarts fat burning utterly.
This may be because MCT oil is more "ketogenic" than other fats. Meaning, it's more easier for the body to convert MCT oil into ketones that body uses for energy when in ketosis, reports a 2018 study.
Pro Tip: For satisfying results, use bulletproof coffee as meal replacement or if you'd like, pair it with intermittent fasting plan to fire up your ketogenic weight loss.
2. May promote satiety (feeling of fullness)
Some people love drinking bulletproof coffee just to prevent hunger during the mornings.
Adding butter, MCT oil or coconut oil to your coffee may make a person feel less hungry due to extra calories and ability of fats to promote satiety.
Keep in mind, this butter coffee is good if you ingest this as a meal replacement. On the flip side, if you add this to your normal breakfast routine, it can cause weight gain if you aren't burning those extra calories during the rest of the day.
3. Improves bone health and ensure a healthy immune system
Grass-fed butter in bulletproof coffee is higher in omega-3 fatty acids. These are thought to have anti-inflammatory properties and associated with many potential health benefits.
In particular, grass-fed butter contains 26% more omega-3 fatty acids than regular butter, on average, reports a 2017 analysis.
4. Provides multiple health benefits of coffee
Besides other ingredients in bulletproof coffee recipe, pure organic coffee alone provides a variety of health benefits and lowers the risk of premature death from heart disease and several types of cancers than those who abstain.
Drinking in moderation may also reduce the chances of developing liver disease, Parkinson's disease and type 2 diabetes. But more studies are needed to figure out how it does so.
In addition, drinking coffee in the morning improves mental focus and keeps you awake and more alert usually for a few hours reports Medical News Today.
Potential Downsides of Bulletproof Coffee
While there's a lot of buzz about bulletproof coffee especially among paleo and low-carb dieters. Still, it can be harmless on some occasions so it's advisable not to make it your regular cup of java.
Here are the reasons why:
1. Low in nutritional value
Asprey and other promoters of bulletproof coffee suggest consuming it in place of breakfast every morning.
No doubt, it helps you in weight management by reducing appetite and providing energy but it lacks in terms of nutritional value.
Drinking this coffee is just another mean of replacing your nutritious meal with a poor substitute.
While grass-fed butter contains some CLA, butyrate and Vitamins (A & K), MCT oil included in its recipe is just a refined and processed fat without essential nutrients.
Quick Note: If you're habitual of drinking bulletproof coffee three times a day, it means you're more likely cutting down your nutrition intake by one-third.
2. Higher in saturated fat
Bulletproof coffee is rich in saturated fat.
It's effect on health has always been controversial, some health experts believe, this can increase the chances of developing the several studies and should be avoided (6).
A 2015 analysis by British Journal of Medicine found that saturated fat is associated with higher risk of developing heart disease. However, some other studies found no significant connections at all.
It can be the part of healthy diets if you ingest it in moderate amounts but it may be harmful if taken in higher doses.
Pro Tip: If you're much more concerned about higher cholesterol level, it's always advised to limit its consumption or avoid taking it completely.
3. Can cause stomach upset
High-fat drinks like bulletproof coffee is generally lower in fiber, it may cause stomach upset particularly in people who are suffering from gastrointestinal conditions like IBS.
According to Cleveland Clinic, fatty acids are specifically bad for people with IBS-related constipations. So, it's great to embark yourself on a low-fat diet that will further improve your heart health and may improve uncomfortable bowel movement.
Should You Drink Bulletproof Coffee?
There's no clear-cut answer to this question, you'll have to evaluate it yourself.
By taking everything into consideration, it appears it can be useful for people who follow ketogenic diets with no uplifted cholesterol levels.
Moderate consumption along with healthy diet may help you shed down some extra pounds and provide the spark of energy to get you going.
However, if you're a regular drinker of bulletproof coffee, it's advised to always keep-in check your blood markers to make sure you aren't taking yourself close to the risk of developing heart disease and other medical conditions.
Pro Tip: If drinking bulletproof improves your well-being and quality of life, it might worth sticking to it even with decreased nutrition intake.
A Few Final Words
Bulletproof coffee is a growing diet trend that's popular among ketogenic dieters and promoted as a useful breakfast substitute. The product maker claims it helps in weight loss, prevents hunger, increases the intense focus and boost the energy levels. However, there's not yet any evidence to back up those benefits or risks.
Drinking in moderation doesn't seem to cause any harm, instead it can be beneficial but taking the higher amounts may have adverse effects on long-term health.
Adding it to your regular lifestyle as a meal replacement won't provide you the essential nutrients you need everyday. Contrarily, eating the balanced and healthy diet can be a beneficial way to improve your mental and keep yourself full until lunch.
In a nutshell, if you're interested in adding this to your regular routine, it's always advised to consult your health care expert to get your blood markers checked before getting started.
Happy Bulletproof coffee-ing!
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