I was recently introduced to a little something known as “Bullet Proof” Coffee.
The first thought that came to mind is, “Wow! coffee served in a Kevlar mug, I love it!”
To my dismay, upon further investigation I realized that was not what bullet proof coffee was at all.
Instead, I found bullet coffee to simply be a normal cup of coffee that has somewhere in the neighborhood of 400 calories of fat added to it from butter and what are known as MCTs (medium chain trigylcerides – as found in coconut oil)
This inexplicable addition is not meant to increase the coffees penchant for repelling bullets, nor will it bestow this attribute upon those who drink it.
Rather, this poorly named “bullet proof” coffee, is supposed to offer some novel benefit to metabolism and mental acuity.
There are two problems with this claim, however:
1. We kind of already definitely know that the caffeine in coffee is proven to enhance mental alertness and reduce perceptions of fatigue. Coffee has been helping people with this for years, long before this bullet proofing concept came along.
2. The average person simply cannot afford to displace 400 calories worth of healthy, nutrient dense foods with saturated, non-essential fatty acids. Sure, adding a bunch of fat to your coffee will make you feel more full than drinking plain coffee, but if you are truly seeking sustained energy, enhanced focus and satiation…. eat a REAL breakfast with a NORMAL coffee.
Why is eating a real breakfast better than bullet proofing your coffee?
It is well understood that eating breakfast is a habit of healthy people.
People who eat breakfast tend to weigh less and have lower risk of disease.
Unfortunately, bullet proof coffee is not known to provide those benefits.
Oh, and we also know that adults who eat breakfast tend to be more focused and productive at work.
A healthy, balanced breakfast will do more for you from a mental, nutritional and metabolic perspective than any gimmicky modification to your coffee.
Here is what 430 calories of real food at breakfast will get you:
1/2 cup Steel Cut Oats – 150 calories
1 medium apple – 95 calories
1/8 cup almonds – 100 calories
1 cup skim milk – 85 calories
An Awesome Breakfast – 430 calories
The math does not lie and the nutritional value is incomparable.
Although you could technically consume it with a bullet proof vest on, bullet proof coffee will offer you literally no protection against ballistics or projectiles.
Sure the added fat blends might provide you a slightly better feeling of energy and satiety than JUST coffee in the morning, but there is no way and no justification to choose bullet proof coffee over a healthy balanced breakfast.
Unfortunately, the average person has to be very mindful of their caloric intake ( believe me, I wish we could all just eat whatever we wanted, but many of us consume calories beyond our needs.) and it is hard to justify spending 400+ calories on fat that is added to your coffee and offering you very little from a nutritional perspective.
My advice? Stick to normal coffee and a real breakfast if you want to be healthy, focused and satisfied in the morning.
Don’t know what a real breakfast looks like? Take a look at my article and learn how to eat breakfast like a champ.
Until next time,
Andy De Santis RD MPH