Coffee is pulling double duty in 2020 as a way for researchers to diagnose COVID-19

Coffee beans are prepared (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
Coffee beans are prepared (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images) /

Coffee is helping researchers to diagnose COVID-19

In a year unlike any other, there are some interesting news stories coming out of the woodwork. And perhaps the most fascinating revolves around coffee. After all, it is not often that you can say one of our favorite beverages can also pull double duty as a way to diagnose something like COVID-19.

According to Mashed, researchers have often turned to coffee for its impressive health benefits, including decreasing the risk for Alzheimer’s, reducing risks associated with heart failure, and even lowering the odds of having colon cancer. And while these are reason enough to keep this drink in your house at all times, there is an even better reason right now.

In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, one side-effect so many people have experience is a loss of smell. And what better way to tell if your sense of smell is gone than by having to sniff the coffee?

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Coffee can give you a clue that you may have COVID-19

Considering smell loss is being called one of the top symptoms associated with the virus, it makes sense that researchers are turning to a very prominent smell to determine if someone may need to be tested. In fact, a loss of smell can be an even greater indicator of whether you have COVID-19 than a cough or fever (as these are symptoms of a whole host of issues, including something as simple as allergies).

A professor at Tufts University School of Medicine, James Schwob, explained that, “one of the things that can be done pretty easily, pretty objectively by someone at home would be to take some ground coffee and see how far away you can hold it and still smell it. If your nose is not congested and you have trouble recognizing those or other scents that are familiar to you, you might want to call your doctor about getting tested.”

Coffee has proven to be so successful in this regard that researchers have even introduced it into the olfactory test strips and are recommending to doctors that they use it as a diagnostic aid as well.

While not being able to smell the coffee might not be absolute proof that you have COVID-19, it certainly seems to be highly effective in many cases. And that makes it even more golden than ever before.

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For more information about COVID-19 and associated symptoms, you may want to visit the CDC website for further details. And remember, coffee is not always the answer, but sometimes it does come in handy.