Cold brew has an unexpected health benefit you'd never guess

What are the health benefits of drinking cold brew?  

It's easy to confuse cold brew and iced coffee — it's just coffee over ice, right? Wrong. The differences between the two brews have been widely discussed, and it comes down to how they're brewed. 

Cold brew is brewed completely different than iced coffee, which is just chilled coffee over ice. Cold brew is made by steeping coffee grounds in cold water for 24 hours, and damn does it have a smooth, flavorful taste. 

Photo credit: @emerlylouise on Instagram

Because of how cold brew is made, it has one insane health benefit over regular hot coffee and iced coffee: It's far less acidic, which means it doesn't irritate the lining of your stomach nearly as much. And a lot of coffees (not ours, though) can be highly acidic and in result cause your stomach to get upset. 

This is why personal trainer Max Lowery only drinks cold brew. Lowery, who does intermittent fasting as part of his daily routine, said that drinking coffee on an empty stomach bothers him. Drinking coffee on an empty stomach is found to make people feel queasy, bloated, and more.

"Because I don't eat until 1 to 2 p.m. every day, I was drinking coffee on an empty stomach and after about 10 days of drinking coffee almost every day, I got very bad IBS symptoms, something I have never had to deal with before," he said in an interview with Insider. 

People with IBS are more likely to be sensitive to acidic foods and beverages, so switching to something with lower acidity can definitely help relieve symptoms.

Cold brew can help with these feelings of queasiness and bloating, though, because it removes up to 70 percent of the acidity. Here's why: 

  • Coffee beans release oils, which are fatty acids
  • During a normal brewing process, these oils are released around 140 degrees Fahrenheit (with iced coffee, it's still released because it was originally brewed hot)
  • The released oils make it more acidic 
  • During the cold brew process, since the oils are never released, it's much less acidic 

If you're finding that hot coffee — or regular brewed iced coffee — is irritating your stomach, switching to cold brew may help relieve symptoms while still getting your daily caffeine fix. 

Related: Coming soon: Death Wish Coffee Cold Brew