The Internet Is Searching for Coffee Now More Than At Any Other Point In History—Why?

Hollywood has also seen its fair share of Joe-targeted ventures, with notable launches including Hugh Jackman’s Laughing Man Coffee, Leonardo DiCaprio’s Lyon in partnership with La Colombe, Machine Gun Kelly’s 27 Club Coffee, and Jadakiss’ Kiss Café. Most recently, in January, Robert Downey Jr. joined the fray with his new coffee line, Happy, reportedly giving coffee quite the endorsement when he said: “I credit coffee, in part, for my sanity.”

Google, find the best coffee shops near me

Perhaps the aforementioned interest in specialty coffee and growing cafes has paved the way for another top Google search: “coffee shops near me.” About eight percent of drinkers in the U.S. are purchasing coffee from a shop daily, while 26.9 percent report buying it a few times a week, according to a recent Statista survey.

It is no surprise that behemoth chains, such as Starbucks, also undeniably influence consumption and seem to dominate the search bar. With over 38,000 stores worldwide and a net revenue of $20.46 billion in 2023, Starbucks remains a cornerstone of consumption, fueled even further by social media hype (and stellar marketing). There’s still a lust for grabbing a cup on the go or cozying up to a latte in a local cafe.

Google search also reveals an interest in coffee health—and recent studies have added to the buzz

Amidst all the buzz and daily consumption, it’s only natural to question the health implications. Google’s frequently asked questions include: “Is coffee good for you?”; “Is coffee bad for you?”; “Which coffee is best for health?”; “What does coffee do to the body?”; and on and on and on.

A number of studies have been conducted in the last 20 to 30 years that have been widely covered in mainstream media outlets and social media platforms. “These reports have significantly heightened the public’s curiosity and fascination about coffee,” says Frank Hu, professor and chair of the Department of Nutrition at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

In fact, the 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans began to recommend moderate coffee consumption (three to five cups per day) due to its health benefits. It was the first time the government‘s official dietary guidelines recommended coffee consumption in the context of a healthy diet,” says Hu. “This might have contributed to a significant shift in the public’s perception of coffee.”

Hu notes that there is consistent evidence that coffee consumption is linked to reduced risk of type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, liver disease, some forms of cancer, and neurological diseases such as dementia and Parkinson’s Disease. However, for some individuals, too much caffeine can lead to anxiety and nervousness and interfere with sleep. Also, adding sugar, cream, or other additives can increase caloric and sugar intake, which can offset coffee’s health benefits, he says.

“As people become more health conscious, there is a growing demand for healthier options in food and beverages, including coffee,” says Hu. “The fascination with and interest in coffee will likely grow with further research uncovering its healthy components such as antioxidants and polyphenols.”

TLDR: Here’s why we’re Googling

From the rise of specialty coffee to lasting interest in coffee at home ignited by the COVID-19 pandemic, the landscape has undergone significant transformation in recent years. The emergence of celebrity-backed brands and the proliferation of influencers on social media platforms like TikTok has further fueled the fascination.

As the bev continues to dominate online discourse, it’s clear that it’s become a cultural phenomenon in its own right. The growing interest in coffee health also shows a broader societal shift towards wellness and conscious consumption. With ongoing research uncovering the potential health benefits of coffee, coupled with its enduring popularity, the future of coffee culture looks bright and caffeinated.

“Most people have pretty low expectations for how good coffee can be, or they used to anyway,” says Hoffmann. “I think once you taste how diverse coffee can be, once you experience brewing coffee really well and feel the satisfaction of preparation coupled with this kind of revelation of interestingness—it turns into a hobby very quickly.” And a hobby that billions can get behind.

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