Coffee is widely consumed around the world. It comes in two most popular kinds – Robusta vs Arabica. Each kind of coffee bean is cultivated in different regions and has unique characteristics. Coffee is the most prominent source of caffeine which is known as the most consumed psychoactive drug.
Caffeine is legal and unregulated around the world but should be taken in moderation to prevent any overdose or undesirable effects.
This article features the two most prominent coffee bean types – the Robusta coffee and the Arabica coffee. Which is better? Where does each of them originate? Which has more caffeine content?
Robusta vs Arabica – Which is better?
The answer depends on the personal preference of each individual. Each coffee bean has its own unique characteristics which are liked or disliked by some. The definition of a “better” coffee bean depends on the number of caffeine content desired by each person, the bitterness, smoothness, sweetness, roast level, and other factors.
To identify which of the two is suited for you, below are the characteristics of each coffee bean type.
Arabica coffee is the world’s most consumed coffee. In fact, 75 to 80% of the coffee beans produced worldwide are Arabica. Most of the commercially available coffee blends are made of Arabica coffee beans.
Arabica coffee has 60% more lipids and contains almost twice the sugar content than the Robusta coffee. This makes this coffee bean sweeter and less bitter compared to the other kind. It is also more affordable and easier to cultivate on the farm. The plant typically grows between 2.5 – 4.5 meters. It is less sensitive to insects and yields higher compared to Robusta coffee. The shape of Arabica coffee beans is oval-ish.
The Robusta coffee is known for having more caffeine content and more bitter taste compared to the Arabica coffee. The taste can be described as something burnt or rubbery as caused by the higher caffeine content.
About 25% of the coffee beans around the world are Robusta. It is usually cultivated at lower altitudes and is usually resistant to pests and diseases. Vietnam is the number one producer of Robusta coffee while Brazil produces the most number of Arabica coffees. The plant of Robusta coffee grows between 4.5 – 6 meters and the bean is much of the circular one.
The amount of production of Robusta coffee beans has increased since the World War II. These were the times when food and money were limited and the coffee market responded.
While Robusta coffee has more caffeine content than the Arabica coffee, it does not necessarily mean that the latter is of lower quality. For heavy coffee drinkers, they might like Robusta coffee to give them more kick in the morning. For occasional coffee drinkers, Arabica coffee can be a good choice since it has a less bitter taste and less caffeine content.
Coffee is the main and most popular source of caffeine in the world. Caffeine is the most commonly used psychoactive drug. It is a kind of medicine that belongs to the central nervous system stimulants. It is used in over the counter medicines to treat drowsiness, tiredness, and lessen the effects of some pain relievers.
Once caffeine is consumed, it is absorbed into the blood and body tissues. It changes how the brain and body work. The health benefits of caffeine include weight loss, mental and physical alertness, improvement of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases, prevention of cataracts, skin cancer, and more.
However, health experts warn about consuming too much caffeine. If taken at maximum doses, caffeine may cause side effects like insomnia, irritability, stomach upset, fast heartbeat, nervousness, diarrhea, and more.
Just like any other food and drink, coffee should be taken in moderation. Therefore, among the two kinds of coffee bean, the Arabica coffee can be considered a safer alternative. This is because Arabica coffee contains less caffeine which prevents you from taking it at maximum dose.
Storing coffee beans
Regardless of the kind of coffee bean you choose, it is important to store it in a tightly sealed, non-transparent container. It should also be kept away from sunlight, heat, and moist. Fresh coffee beans taste better and smoother. Therefore, it is always important to have it properly stored to keep the freshness longer.