Health & Wellness

In Focus: National Barista Champ Michael Harris Conlin On The Risks Of Drinking Instant Coffee

In Focus: National Barista Champ Michael Harris Conlin On The Risks Of Drinking Instant Coffee

A lot of us love coffee not just for its flavor, but also for its functional benefits boosting our mood and jolting us to movement. As helpful as coffee is to our daily grind, though, it can be really expensive—leading some to turn to instant coffee during petsa de peligro. Instant coffee, of course, is our fave energizer bought cheap and mixed for us in convenience. Just pour the 3-in-1 sachet in a cup of hot water and we're all good—until we learn it has its downside, too, says 2019 National Barista Champion Michael Harris Conlin.

Conlin, who recently opened his own barista school Institute for Coffee Excellence, revealed to ABS-CBN Lifestyle the counter-productive "benefits" of instant coffee.

[related: Dining Delight: Looking For 'High Quality' Coffee Shops In Manila? Here Are Our Recos!]

2019 National Barista Champion Michael Harris Conlin

“Instant coffee has maltodextrin and that’s glucose with a glycemic index of 85-100. Too much of it is not good for us,” he said. “The way instant coffee is made, it’s usually spray-dried. You have a vat of brewed coffee and then they spray it through a little hole into an environment that’s over 500 degrees. Usually, it would evaporate but there’s maltodextrin. It’s sugar and then the molecules of the coffee bond to the maltodextrin. It would come out a little salty that’s why 3-in-1 has a lot of sugar and creamer to cover it. That’s what instant coffee is.”

[related: Cheat Sheet: Perfect Your Latte Art With This Award-Winning Barista's Tips!]

At the grand opening of the Institute for Coffee Excellence

Conlin recommended brewed coffee as a healthier and more flavorful albeit more expensive alternative. “When it’s hot, all the flavors are still there,” he explained. “Our taste buds can only taste sweetness, bitterness, acidity, sourness, and umami and when you’re drinking hot coffee, you can smell thousands of its aromas. It’s not just the flavors you are tasting; you’re tasting nuances of fruit and you can get it when it’s hot.”

ALSO READ: Cheat Sheet: Nail Alyssa Muhlach’s Radiant Cheeks Like A Pro With This Palette

Photographs by the author | Banner image taken from




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