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  • Thread starter Deleted member 3000
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Deleted member 3000

Coffee in Spain is usually made in espresso machines. The choices:
• short black coffee
• long black coffee
• cortado (which is a short black coffee with a drop of milk) This type of coffee can be ordered to specify how much milk is used.
o cortado 'short of coffee'
o cortado 'with very little milk'
o cortado 'with very hot milk'
o cortado 'with cold milk'
• cafe con leche (black coffee with milk), either regular (pequeño) or large (grande)
• American coffee (which is a larger black coffee in a bigger cup, only weaker as it has more water added) – English women and Germans seem to be the main buyers of the café Americano

You will see laborers in the morning getting a shot of orujo or other liquor in their coffee, apparently an excellent way to start the day.

About one café in ten along the Camino will serve drip coffee. I avoid such places when I spot them in time.

I am among those with too much time on his hands, so I roast my own coffee. I buy green coffee beans based on the recommendations of “cuppers”. The end result of my roasting falls in three categories, light city roast (first “crack”), full city roast (second “crack”), and espresso roast (oily bean short of caramelized French roast). I observed the beans used in bars in Spain, and it appears to be a blend. I now blend my own using ¼ light city roast, ½ full city roast, and ¼ espresso roast. The taste is like many of the bars in Spain.

Indispensable to me on the Camino are ibuprofen and coffee. Tea drinkers may not get a caffeine withdrawal headache or heart palpitations, but they also miss out on the energizing first cup of the day.
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Ibuprofen, cafe con leche, and friends got me through the Camino!

I don’t roast my own beans, but I did buy a nice Bialetti stove top express maker that does the job well enough. I haven’t been able to get the right flavor, so I’m looking forward to trying your mix of beans. As for the steamed milk I usually just heat it in a pot on the stove or in the microwave. Not too happy with those results as sometimes I get some milk skin in my cafe. :(

I dream of a nice expresso machine with a milk steamer… one day…


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Year of past OR future Camino
2002 CF: 2004 from Paris: 2006 VF: 2007 CF: 2009 Aragones, Ingles, Finisterre: 2011 X 2 on CF: 2013 'Caracoles': 2014 CF and Ingles 'Caracoles":2015 Logrono-Burgos (Hospitalero San Anton): 2016 La Douay to Aosta/San Gimignano to Rome:
I don't touch coffee anymore - miss it sometimes, especially when I smell it, but I can't have caffiene.
Post meopausal women should avoid it as it has been found to be a contributor to bone breakdown and may be a factor in the development of osteoporosis. Some reports show that it 'leeches' the calcium from your bones.
I have been warned off decaf too because no coffee is completely caffiene free and three cups a day would equal one unit of caffiene - 2.5 units of caffiene increases the risk of hip fractures.

Deleted member 3000

Try cafe con leche:

"Bone loss. Though some observational studies have linked caffeinated beverages to bone loss and fractures, human physiological studies have found only a slight reduction in calcium absorption and no effect on calcium excretion, suggesting the observations may reflect a diminished intake of milk-based beverages among coffee and tea drinkers.

"Dr. Robert Heaney of Creighton University says that caffeine’s negative effect on calcium can be offset by as little as one or two tablespoons of milk. He advised that coffee and tea drinkers who consume the currently recommended amount of calcium need not worry about caffeine’s effect on their bones."

"Dietary caffeine acutely increases urinary calcium loss (1), and these losses are not entirely compensated for in the 24 h after caffeine consumption (2). Overall, the evidence indicates that younger individuals can increase their calcium absorption to compensate for the urinary losses, whereas the elderly are less adaptable (3). It is not surprising that most cross-sectional studies of elderly populations showed no association of caffeine consumption with bone loss or bone mineral density because so many genetic and lifestyle factors are now known to affect bone health. Previous prospective studies of elderly populations yielded conflicting results regarding caffeine and bone loss. Although Cummings et al (4) included caffeine consumption among the risk factors for hip fracture, Lloyd et al (5) were unable to find any association of caffeine with bone loss in a 2-y prospective study of 112 postmenopausal women. Similarly, Hannan et al (6) did not find that caffeine (or calcium intake) was associated with bone loss in the Framingham study population.

"The interaction of caffeine intake with calcium on bone loss was reported by Harris and Dawson-Hughes (7). These investigators found that bone loss from the spine and total-body bone mineral density occurred only in postmenopausal women who had both low calcium intakes (440–744 mg/d) and high caffeine intakes (450–1120 mg/d). The following year, this same research team showed that response to calcium supplementation is influenced by vitamin D receptor gene (VDR) genotype (8), with the rate of loss at the femoral neck being reduced by calcium only in the BB VDR subgroup. In retrospect, it is probably not surprising that in this issue of the Journal Rapuri et al (9) report that caffeine's effect on bone loss is also associated with VDR genotype.

"The new findings of Rapuri et al (9) cause us to re-interpret the results of previously published studies. Rapuri et al found that caffeine intakes of >300 mg/d were associated with bone loss in 96 women in a 3-y prospective study. Caffeine, however, was only associated with increased bone loss in women with the tt VDR genotype. This subgroup contained only 5 of the 33 women (15%) with higher caffeine intakes. Bone loss in this subgroup exceeded 3%/y at all 5 sites examined (spine, femoral neck, trochanter, total body, and total femur), although significantly so at only 3 sites, probably because of the low number of subjects in the group. In the total group, only 11 of the 96 women had the tt VDR genotype, and 6 of these 11 were apparently protected by their lower intake of caffeine. Unfortunately, the sample size was too small to test the interaction of dietary calcium with caffeine and genotype. The low incidence of the susceptible genotype helps to explain the lack of association seen in several previous prospective studies. Only 5 of the 96 women had significant bone loss with higher caffeine intakes, and this small percentage would not be detectable in studies not considering genotype."


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2002 CF: 2004 from Paris: 2006 VF: 2007 CF: 2009 Aragones, Ingles, Finisterre: 2011 X 2 on CF: 2013 'Caracoles': 2014 CF and Ingles 'Caracoles":2015 Logrono-Burgos (Hospitalero San Anton): 2016 La Douay to Aosta/San Gimignano to Rome:
I already have osteoporosis and caffiene is the one thing I can't risk!
I have been a teetotaller all my life, don't smoke, am a vegetarian, walk every day and love the outdoors.
Women are told that the way to manage ostoporosis is to increase calcium intake, cut out smoking, reduce alcohol intake, cut out caffiene, reduce red meat consumption, increase weight bearing activities and spend time in the sun for vitamin D.
Imagine if I hadn't been following that for years already! I would have been bent over, fragile little old lady!

PS: That's another reason why I use two sticks - especially on the downhills!
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Home to Reims 2007
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falcon269 said:
Tea drinkers may not get a caffeine withdrawal headache or heart palpitations,

Yes, I do - well, not heart palpitations, but headache and vomiting. See our blog and first morning in O Coruna on Camino Ingles.

falcon269 said:
but they also miss out on the energizing first cup of the day.

The tea has that effect for me.

Falcon, please find me comforting research so that I don't feel the need to reduce my tea habit. I do have milk with it. Even better, I'm sure there is research out there which shows a beneficial effect for tea consumption. Probably funded by tea bag manufacturers.

And tea bags don't weigh a lot.

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