Caffeine is the most commonly used mood-altering drug in the world, and coffee is one of the most popular means of ingesting it. Over 50% of Americans drink coffee on a daily basis, and that figure is thought to be increasing every year.
But there's more to coffee than its caffeine content, and scientists are perpetually trying to make sense of the various effects that this mysterious brew has on our bodies. Coffee's most recent brush with media attention came just a few weeks ago, with the release of a study that showed women who drank four cups of coffee per day had a 20% lower risk of depression than those who drank a cup or less per week. But coffee isn't always billed as a wonder beverage; caffeinated and decaffeinated versions alike have built up a pretty serious rap sheet over the years. Here are 10 reasons coffee is either an elixir of the gods, or an evil concoction we've all been duped into loving unconditionally.