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Here’s Why People Put Butter in Their Coffee

A spoon with a pat of butter sits on top of a mug of coffee.

People take their coffee in lots of different ways, but if you’ve seen someone add butter to their cup, you might be a little weirded out. You shouldn’t be, though. As it turns out, there’s a reason for this seemingly odd recipe.

When people make butter coffee, it can have two distinct benefits. The drink could help avoid a caffeine crash, and it might keep you full, reducing your appetite, and leading to weight loss.

Adding butter to your coffee appears to have come from the development of Bulletproof Coffee. It’s a brand, developed by Dave Asprey, that uses specific beans, unsalted butter, and MCT (medium chain triglyceride) oil. You can buy kits to make the coffee online, but you can also DIY your own recipe. When you see people dropping butter into their mug, that’s likely what they’re doing.

If you do want to DIY, you won’t just be adding butter to your morning cup. You’ll also need coconut oil. According to loyal drinkers, coconut oil helps promote a feeling of fullness which can lead to a decrease in appetite and weight loss. While these claims haven’t been thoroughly vetted when it comes to the coffee recipe itself, coconut oil is a rich source of medium chain triglycerides which do help make you feel more full.

As for the butter, it’s filled with fats, and when blended into coffee, those fats can slow your digestion. When your digestion is slowed, the caffeine in the coffee breaks down slower leading to a longer-lasting energy boost and no late afternoon crash (though some argue it’s the coconut oil achieving this).

While this all sounds great, there are some downsides to adding butter to your coffee. The high-fat content can cause stomach upset, and if you’re using it in place of a balanced breakfast, you’re missing out on other nutrients like proteins, fibers, and vitamins. If your body is highly reactive to cholesterol, you should also avoid this recipe.

If you want to try a new way to start your day or are in a hurry and need a quick breakfast replacement, adding some butter and coconut oil to your coffee might be worth a shot.

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