I’ve written a lot in the past about the social and environmental impacts of coffee, one of the world’s most popular beverages and most highly traded commodities. I have considered writing a book about it (let me know if you think you’d be interested), but I’ve always been a little hesitant about how much the average consumer really wants to know about it. Many of us adore the taste and other sensations of a hot cup of joe, not to mention the comfort and ritual of it, but how much do we want to look behind the bean? For all the talk of caffeine, science actually doesn’t know a lot about its effects on the human body, much less the hundreds of other biologically active ingredients (and their interactions) present in your latte. There’s a lot of debate on how healthful coffee is, and studies often seem to contradict each other.

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How coffee changed America