The Real Reason Cold Brew Coffee Is Easier On Your Stomach

Though there are a million ways one can get a caffeine fix these days, few options are more pleasing than a hot cup of coffee. Whether you're stopping by your favorite cafe for a pour-over featuring gorgeous, single-origin Colombian beans or making a pot of Folgers at home, it's hard to deny that a perfect cup of java is one of life's greatest pleasures. And as the craft of brewing coffee has become more specialized and artisanal over the past few decades, the art of cold brew has also been on the rise.

In addition to its incredible ease, which New York Times Cooking describes as stirring ground coffee and water together and letting it sit for 12 hours before straining, cold brew is known to have several significant health benefits. According to Dr. Frank Hu of the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, it can decrease the risk of developing type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and neurodegenerative disease (via Yahoo! News). But does cold brew's ease of preparation and health advantages mean it's as good for you as hot coffee? Some would argue that it's easier on the body.

Cold brew is less acidic than hot coffee

Healthline shares a list of cold brew coffee's benefits. They include boosting metabolism, prolonging lifespan, and impacting your mood. Cold and hot coffee are both pretty acidic — there's no avoiding that fact. They usually score around 5-6 on the pH scale, which charts how acidic a liquid is. Healthline notes that the EPA recommends drinking water between a pH of 6.5 and 8.5; Core Hydration water claims a "perfect pH" level of 7.4.

A study published by the American Chemical Society shows that cold brew is "slightly less acidic" than hot brew coffee. It has compounds like crude polysaccharides that Healthline says can boost your digestive system's immunity and decrease gut irritation. And as anyone who has ever had one cup too many knows, too much coffee (i.e., too much acid) can cause acid reflux, indigestion, and heartburn. These are afflictions that, when occurring too often, can cause one to question whether their daily fix is worthwhile. In the case of cold brew, it seems you might be a bit more protected.