Iced coffee

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Some media coverage has suggested that the health properties may differ between hot and chilled coffee, is this the case?

Iced coffee is a popular choice in summer months providing a chilled alternative to hot drinks. While drinking coffee is associated with an increase in alertness, there is no research to suggest any differences between the beverage when served hot or chilled.

Iced coffee is typically prepared using coffee, ice, dairy or plant-based milk, and sometimes sugar. Often the proportions of coffee to milk differ to hot beverages, with a greater proportion of milk in an iced drink. Where dairy milk is added, this can bring additional health benefits. Dairy milk is a valuable source of key nutrients, particularly the mineral calcium1, which is important in the development and maintenance of bones2. Plant-based milks are also a popular addition for many iced coffee drinkers – whether it be almond, soy, coconut or rice (to name a few). The nutritional value of plant-based milk will vary according to the preferred type and what ingredients are included.

Where sugar is added, this will affect the calorie content in the beverage. So although there is no research suggesting that temperature affects the nutritional profile of your cup of coffee, the way in which it is served can.

To learn more about coffee and nutrition, read here.

  1. Food Standards Agency, Public Health England (2014), McCance and Widdowson’s The Composition of Foods, 7th edn., Cambridge, Royal Society of Chemistry.
  2. National Osteoporosis Foundation ‘Calcium and Vitamin D’. Available at: https://www.nof.org/patients/treatment/calciumvitamin-d/

This information is intended for Healthcare professional audiences.
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