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Your Health / Coffee and Cycling—Watch the Acid

18 Jan 2015

By Rob Tillman, author of Vapors Rising

It is a known fact that coffee is a part of the cycling culture; however, coffee can be a culprit for upsetting stomachs due to its acidity. I decided to Google around to find a coffee that would produce less acid. I found this article from Rodale News ( that noted that caffeine and two plant compounds catechols and N-alkanoly-5-hydroxytriptamides cause stomach cells to crank out more acid. The article also noted that dark roasted coffee contain a higher level of the molecule N-methylpyridinium (NMP) that causes the opposite—less acid.

NMP molecular structure

NMP does not exist in unroasted coffee beans; however, it is created during the roasting from its precursor chemical, trigonelline. Scientists are investigating NMP's potential anti-carcinogenic properties, especially against colon cancer. [1]

I looked further and found that chicory-blended coffee had less caffeine in coffee. Chicory is from the Cichorium intybus plant and does not contain caffeine. Folks have been drinking this type of coffee since the early 1700s, about the same time that New Orleans, LA was founded (May 1718) where chicory coffee is very popular.

Based on the above findings, I figured that selecting a coffee with chicory blend would be the route to go. So I chose Community Coffee's "coffee and chicory" dark roast. After filling my cup of freshly brewed coffee with chicory, I can add cream from a coconut milk-based creamer.

1 - "Highly Active Compound Found In Coffee May Prevent Colon Cancer". ScienceDaily. Oct 15, 2003.

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