The Best Coffee for Sensitive Stomachs

Do you love coffee but find that your stomach doesn’t?

Ever had that gurgle in your stomach after drinking a cup of coffee? Do you suffer from heartburn? How about a stabbing pain in your belly?

It should be of some comfort to you, that you are not alone.

An estimated 35 to 40 million Americans have reduced their coffee intake because it causes gut problems.

Both the caffeine and the acid in coffee are often considered culprits of the problem.

But the news is mixed. A recent Stanford University study found almost no evidence for a connection between drinking less coffee and reduced heartburn.

But, there is much anecdotal to support the fact that coffee does influence your stomach. So, how does it work and how might we avoid the worst effects?

How Coffee Affects Digestion

There are two main ways in which coffee affects our digestion.

Firstly is because of the acids within coffee itself.

And secondly because coffee acts as a laxative.

Let’s deal with the acid first.

Coffee and Acid

The theory goes that caffeine is acidic and as a result it can harm the lining of your stomach and even damage your intestines.

It is supposed to make conditions like acid reflux and heartburn worse.

But, there isn’t much science backing this theory up.

The truth seems to be almost the opposite.

Coffee is not very acidic at all and has a PH of 5, which is less acidic than beer, tomato and orange juice. (inc. ph scale.)

Other people note that black coffee is about as acidic as a banana or carrots!

Part of the problem may come from the fact that the taste of many coffee varieties is described as acidic.

But this description only applies to the taste of the beans or the grinds and not to the chemical compounds in them.

And so in the next section, I will discuss the main acids that are in coffee.

The Five Main Acids in Coffee

A coffee bean has five main acids in it; 

Citric Acid

The most prominent acid taste in coffee because it is the taste of lemons. This taste reduces as the level of roast gets darker. 

Malic Acid

This is an acid that you can taste in apples. It provides coffee with a tart flavor which lingers on the tongue. 

Acetic Acid

This is the main ingredient in vinegar. 

And if that sounds unpleasant, it is worth remembering that this gives a coffee a very clean flavor. 

Lactic Acid

The same acid that is in milk. It enhances the creaminess of a coffee. 

Phosphoric Acid

This acid is added to coffee because it is used in fertilizer. 

It adds a lovely blackcurrant flavor to Kenyan coffees. 

Coffee as a Laxative

And how about coffee as a laxative?

There seems to be more consensus that coffee acts as a laxative than there is about its acidity. 

It makes your bowels move.

This is due to the caffeine in coffee exciting the muscles in your digestive system.

But where does all of this information leave us?

Well most recommendations that other websites will give you are a selection of branded low acid coffees.

And there is nothing wrong with that…

It is just that it is a bit limited.

My recommendations include branded low acid coffees but I recommend to you several other sorts of coffees as well.

To give you greater choice and a better chance of finding a coffee that knocks your socks off and keeps your stomach smiling. 

Low Acid Coffee

OK. Let’s get the most obvious choices out of the way first. 

In response to the massive number of people who experience problems with their stomachs after drinking coffee,  a new sort of coffee has been marketed.

Low acid coffee.

And there are two types; inadvertent and treated. 

Inadvertent low acid coffee is coffee that is naturally low in acid without being interfered with. 

This tends to be coffees that are grown at low altitudes such as beans grown in Peru, Guatamala or Mexico.

Treated low acid coffees are made from beans that have been through a special process to lower their acid content.

This can involve either a slower roasting process, an interrupted roasting process or steaming green coffee beans to remove the waxy outer layer.

But which ones are my favorites?

Pablo Low Acid Coffee

Details

  • Ground |Whole Bean
  • Weight: 32 oz (907 G)
  • Roast: Medium Dark
  • Organic: No
  • Country or Origin: Guatemala

Features

Pablo’s pride is the artisan’s choice for low acid coffees. Its multi-layered flavours roll over your tongue in a blend of velvet, caramel and a hint of cocoa.

It comes in industrial 2lb bags of blended whole beans. Not a hint of chemical or genetically-modified plants.

It works amazingly with both the traditional drip machine and espresso makers. It always comes out with a beautiful layer of crema.

Some find it a touch on the bitter side and the flavour a little harsh.

But it’s packed with depth, and its low acidity won’t trigger your indigestion.

It’s shade-grown, meaning it has less acid and requires less pesticide. It doesn’t trigger stomach issues like many other coffees.

Tempted? Buy Here

Puroast

Details

  • Ground |Whole Bean
  • Weight: 20.8 oz (1350 G)
  • Roast: Not Specified
  • Organic: No
  • Country of Origin: Not Specified

Features

Puroast boasts a ton of health benefits.

It has 70% less acid than most coffee and seven times the antioxidants of green tea.

Its innovative roasting process gives the coffee a pure, chemical-free smoothness that few coffees can match.

If you have a dodgy stomach, this might be one of your best choices. Its extremely low acid content is gentle on your digestive system.

Perfect if you have acid reflux or other conditions which stop you drinking coffee.

The flavour is a little on the weak side which might take some getting used to. But it is smooth and characterful. One to try if coffee triggers your symptoms!

Tempted? Buy Here

Lucy Jo’s

Details

  • Ground |Whole Bean
  • Weight:  11 oz (311 G)
  • Roast: Medium Dark
  • Organic: Yes
  • Country of Origin: Indonesia | Brazil

Features

Do you want a great tasting coffee that has a sense of fun?

Fancy a cup of Mellow Belly?

That just says it all, doesn’t it?

And Lucy Jo’s comes highly recommended from people with reflux.

It’s brewed from a 100% organic arabica beans using a blend of Indonesian and Brazilian beans. 

Its super low acid blend is smooth and it has a deep freshly-roasted flavour.

It smells like a million dollars. The aroma will draw in friends and family alike!

Lucy Jo is a family-run roastery based in Upstate New York who specialise in producing amazing organic coffees sourced from local growers.

The bag is a little on the small side at 11 oz, but the company are working on expanding to a larger batch.

They are a truly a small company with huge passion!

A few find the taste a touch bitter, but its popularity among those with GERD and IBS speaks for itself.

Tempted? Buy Here

Dark Roasts

Coffee varies in its roast level from light roast to dark roast

In fact, there are four main roast levels;

  • Light
  • Medium
  • Medium- Dark
  • Dark

These levels describe the color of the coffee beans.

Darkly roasted coffee beans are roasted to an internal temperature of 240 °C until the beans have cracked for a second time.

Other names of dark roasts include; French, Italian or Espresso roasts.

But are dark roasts kinder to your stomach?

Yes but not for the reason that most people believe.

Many people think that dark roasted beans are less acidic than light or medium roasted beans.

This is probably a myth as all brewed coffee has the same PH.

Instead, darker roasts are kinder on your stomach not because they are less acidic but because a longer roasting process creates NMP (N-methylpyridinium) which seems to calm your stomach by reducing the amount of acid it creates.

But which ones are my favorite?

Peet’s Coffee

Details

  • Ground |Whole Bean
  • Weight: 20 oz (567 G)
  • Roast: Dark
  • Organic: No
  • Country of Origin: Not Specified

Features

This is coffee that tells a story.

Peet’s famous Major Dickason’s Blend is named after a retired army officer, who made coffee so good he got a promotion!

Peet’s pride themselves on their use of fresh coffee beans.

And you can taste it too.

Major Dickason’s Blend is smooth and balanced. With each sip, rich flavours pour across the tongue.

Are you an espresso fan? Then Peet’s is ideal.

What about a French Press? It tastes even better.

Though some find the taste a touch acidic, the dark roast is gentle on the stomach.

A great choice for taste, style and digestion.

Tempted? Buy Here

Koffee Kult

Details

  • Ground |Whole Bean
  • Weight: 32 oz (907 G)
  • Roast: Dark
  • Organic: No
  • Country of Origin: Colombia, Guatemala and Sumatra

Features

Koffee Kult is a family business. You can feel their passion from the first sniff.

They take the time to educate their customers on how to brew the perfect cup of coffee.

They roast the coffee themselves. You can even visit the factory to see it happen.

Despite its strength and bold flavour, Koffee Kult is low in acid and not even slightly bitter or oily.

It’s one of the smoothest experiences for those with a troublesome gut.

It’s depth of flavour and unbeatable aroma sets it apart from most gourmet coffees.

This is a coffee that delivers well beyond expectations.

Neither you, nor your stomach will be sorry.

Tempted? Buy Here

Starbuck’s Dark Roast

Details

  • Ground |Whole Bean
  • Weight: 20 oz (566 G)
  • Roast: Dark
  • Organic: No
  • Country of Origin: Not specified

Features

Starbucks French Roast is the darkest roast out there.

It has a strong, robust taste that is as addictive as it is dark.

With its rich smoky aroma that overwhelms the senses, it’s a great choice for guests.

Unlike many Starbucks coffees, it doesn’t have that burnt tang. It’s not even slightly acidic.

It almost tastes like drinking dark chocolate.

Though it costs quite a lot per bag, you get a good 20 ounces.

There aren’t many who can match its flavour at the price. It’s quality stuff.

It also works beautifully as a cold brew, so is a great option for those with sensitive tummies.

Tempted? Buy Here

Cold Brew

Firstly, let’s describe what cold brew coffee is- and isn’t.

It is not just coffee that has gone cold or even a variant of iced coffee.

Cold brew refers to the brewing process.

To keep it simple, cold-brew is when coffee grounds are steeped in cold water for 12 hours or more.

A more sophisticated and detailed explanation can be read here

Many people say that cold brew coffee is a lot smoother and less bitter than hot brewed coffee.

This is because more of the sweet and delicate aromas have been able to transferred from the coffee beans to the coffee.

Aromas which tend to be destroyed when coffee is hot brewed.

Importantly when it comes to our stomachs, cold brewed coffee is 67% less acidic than most forms of hot brewed coffee.

This is because more acids are extracted from the coffee when it is hot brewed compared to when it is cold brewed.

Which is why it might be a better option for those of you who have sensitive stomachs.

And these are my favorites

Tiny Footprint

Details

  • Ground |Whole Bean
  • Weight: 16 oz (454 G)
  • Roast: Not Specified
  • Organic: Yes
  • Country of Origin: Not specified

Features

If you care about the environment as well as your stomach, Tiny Footprint might be the right coffee for you.

A glorious cold press coffee that delivers a sweet, silky flavour. It’s got a rich flowery scent that’ll draw you in to its deep fruity tones.

Tiny footprint is a carbon negative company. They donate some of their profits towards planting forests in Ecuador!

All their coffee beans are grown at high-altitude in fair trade sellers.

It comes in a weighty 50lb pack of coarse-ground coffee ideal for cold presses.

It’s perfect if kept in the fridge and makes excellent Frappes for a hot summer’s day.

The cold brew makes the acid content low. It’s so smooth that you’ll find yourself drinking your third cup before you know it.

Tempted? Buy Here

Stone Street

Details

  • Ground |Whole Bean
  • Weight: 16 oz (454 G)
  • Roast: Dark
  • Organic: No
  • Country of Origin: Colombia

Features

The discerning customer’s choice, Stone Street Cold Brew is roasted with care.

The beans and the grind are perfect for cold brew.

The grind is coarse in order to get the smoothest and best flavor from a long extraction. 

It’s also a dark roast, so if you’ve got a delicate tummy, then this could be the perfect match.

The bag is packed with 1lb of 100% Colombian coffee.

The bag has a genius resealable design that keeps your coffee fresh and aromatic.

This is some of the best Colombian coffee out there. It’s flavor is rich and roasty with notes of dark chocolate.

It’s the ideal compromise between taste and gentleness on the stomach.

Tempted? Buy Here

Bizzy Organic Cold Brew

Details

  • Ground |Whole Bean
  • Weight: 16 oz (454 G)
  • Roast: Light, Medium and Dark
  • Organic: Yes
  • Country of Origin: Central & South America 

Features

Bizzy’s Organic Cold Brew is as flexible as it is tasty.

If you want it strong, just brew with less water. If you want it mild and smooth, just add a little more water.

However you have it, it’s like drinking liquid gold.

Unlike many coffees gentle on the digestive system, Bizzy’s isn’t at all bitter but smooth rich and deep.

Its flavour shines when brewed at room temperature. Perfect for your iced mocha too!

The bag is slightly small at 16oz, but its reasonably priced and its quality is well worth a try.

A truly masterful cold brew, perfect with ice, milk or even ice cream. Take your pick!

Tempted? Buy Here

Dry Processed Beans

There are four ways that commercial coffee is processed and by that I mean how the coffee bean is extracted from the 4 layers of its cherry and surrounding pulp.

  • Dry
  • Wet
  • Pulped natural
  • Re-passed

And the the two most widely used methods are wet and dry processed.

What is the dry process?

Dry or naturally processed coffee happens when the coffee cherries are left to dry in the sun.

The process is similar to the drying process that grapes undergo as they are dried and turned into raisins.

Every so often, the cherries will be gently raked or turned so that the drying will be even.

This will often take up to four weeks and it is only complete when the moisture content has been reduced to 12.5%.  

But, why is the dry method more stomach friendly?

When any fruit ripens, the sugar content increases and the acids decrease.

Coffee is no different.

Over time the coffee seed draws in sugar from its skin and surrounding layers.

But what is my favorite dry processed coffee?

Ethiopian Bright

Details

  • Ground |Whole Bean
  • Weight: 16 oz (454 G)
  • Roast: Light
  • Organic: Yes
  • Country of Origin: Ethiopia 

Features

From the first cup, Ethiopian Bright explodes with a luxurious bouquet of aromas.

It uses coffee cherries dried in the desert sun to give the beans a unique fruity flavour.

The drying process lowers the acid content in the beans.

It’s perfect for those with stomach difficulties.

The gentle roast combined with the dry processing makes for a unique product.

And, when it’s brewed, the smell is divine- it is so citrusy that you can almost smell the lemons

And you know what else? It has a crema is rich and frothy.

Some people might find the coffee a little on the oily side.

But, for most, its depth and richness leaves other coffees in the dust.

What’s more, if you don’t like it you can get a refund within 30 days! That’s how confident they are!

Tempted? Buy Here

White Coffee

What is White Coffee?

White coffee isn’t simply coffee with a splash of milk nor is it another name for a light roasted coffee.

Instead, it is a coffee that has been roasted differently.

Standard roasts of coffee (whether the roast is light or dark) use temperatures ranging from about 450 F to 480 F.

In a light roast, the coffee beans are roasted for a shorter time than a dark roast.

White coffee is produced when the beans are roasted at a much lower temperature- only about 325 F.

How Can It Help People With Sensitive Stomachs?

It helps people with sensitive stomachs because it has a much lower acid content that traditional roasted coffee beans.

But, be warned.

If you want to experiment with white coffee beans, you must buy them pre ground.

White coffee beans are roasted at a much lower temperature and so the beans themselves are rock solid compared to beans roasted at standard temperature.

Consequently, they will break any coffee grinder that you might be using at home.

And what are my favourite white coffees?

Wired Willeys White Coffee

Details

  • Ground |Whole Bean
  • Weight: 32 oz (907 G)
  • Roast: White
  • Organic: No
  • Country of Origin: Not specified 

Features

Want something a little different?

Then give Wired Willey’s White Coffee a go. 

It’s a rich, nutty white coffee that infuses the senses with every sip.

Unlike darker roasts, it is extremely lightly roasted, producing an exceptionally low-acid coffee.

The flavour is unlike any of the darker coffees and is well worth a try. It’s a great choice for someone who’s not into normal coffee.

It comes in a generously-priced 2lb bag that is well worth the investment.

It’s perfect with a tablespoon of white chocolate or a dash of vanilla creamer.

It’s fantastic if you want to indulge but avoid the stomach troubles of normal coffee.

Tempted? Buy Here

Cafe Appassionato

Details

  • Ground |Whole Bean
  • Weight: 32 oz (907 G)
  • Roast: White | Light
  • Organic: No
  • Country of Origin: Not specified 

Features

Caffe Appassionato is roasted at extremely low temperatures in their Seattle roastery.

The taste is smooth with an edge of cinnamon and chocolate.

The grind is quite coarse in comparison to other white coffees, so it’s perfect for the French press.

It is low acid and high in caffeine.

Be careful brewing a lot at once- it is best to start in small batches and test how much is right for you.

The slightly higher price might put some of you off.

It’s smooth on the taste buds and delicate on your gut.

Most people like to add a slug of creamer or a dollop of milk to enhance the coffee’s smoothness.

This is a perfect for those with a distaste for bitterness.

Tempted? Buy Here

Healthy Fats

This option is a bit different as I am not recommending a coffee. 

Instead I am recommending something that you add into a coffee..

Which isn’t milk, half and half or heavy cream.

Heavy fats are all the rage at the moment, whisk up some butter and coconut oil and use that instead of milk or creamer.

Coconut milk might be effective too.

These fats stop the stomach producing excess acid.

They do this by binding the bad acids so they can’t mix into your stomach acids. It makes it harder for your body to absorb them.

And, to top it off, good quality fats are essential to improving your overall health. Perhaps worth a try.

And my favorite healthy fats?

Omega Power Cleaner 

Details

  • # Packs: 1
  • Weight: 10 Fl. oz (295 ml)
  • Ingredients: Grass fed ghee | coconut oil | MCT oil
  • Organic: Yes

Want something better than milk or traditional creamer?

Something that’ll keep your stomach from going crazy?

Want something packed with great quality fats to keep you healthy?

Then give Omega Power Creamer a try.

Those with sensitive stomachs often have to avoid milk and dairy.

Omega Power Creamer is the perfect solution.

If you want to try a butter coffee or fuel yourself on the ketogenic diet, this is the perfect solution.

It contains three great fats; Ghee, Coconut Oil and MCT oil. All are Organic.

And it stays liquid at room temperature.

With coffee, it leaves you feeling alert and energized, without the stomach qualms.

Tempted? Buy Here

Nutpods Unsweetened French Vanilla

Details

  • # Packs: 4
  • Weight: 11.2 Fl. oz (330 ml)
  • Ingredients: Almonds | Coconut Cream 
  • Organic: Yes

Features

Avoiding dairy? Sticking to your vegan diet? Cutting out the sugar?

Nutpods French Vanilla Creamer might be just what the doctor ordered.

It’s made from almonds and coconuts without a hit of sugar or dairy.

It’s great in a cup of coffee, tea or even as a milk alternative in oatmeal or your favourite dessert!

Just make sure that you give the bottle a good shake before using it to prevent it separating.

The blend of healthy fats is gentle on your stomach and helps avoid inflammation.

Perfect if you’re trying to stay healthy and protect your digestive system.

Tempted? Buy Here

Add Cardamom

In traditional Indian medicine, cardamom seeds are used as lozenges to suck on after meals to help with digestion. 

Cardamom has been used to make acidic foods easier to digest for over 5000 years.

In the Middle East, coffee is brewed with ground cardamom.

It is a member of the ginger family and because they are alkaline, they will naturally balance the acids in coffee. 

Arabica Beans

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