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UNH prof: Coffee infused with Vitamin D may help cure winter blues

Union Leader Correspondent

December 05. 2017 1:00AM

UNH organic chemist Glen Miller has created CoffVee, coffee infused with resveratrol — the substance responsible for the health benefits of red wine. (KIMBERLEY HAAS/Union Leader Correspondent)

PORTSMOUTH — A chemistry professor at the University of New Hampshire has created a coffee that may help drinkers battle their winter blues.

Glen Miller has been spending time figuring out how to get more vitamin D into the average American’s diet.

He said he based his research in part on a 2013 study published in the British Journal of Psychiatry that reported people with a vitamin D deficiency are more than twice as likely to be diagnosed with depression.

He said seasonal affective disorder is thought to be triggered by a lack of sunlight on shorter winter days.

Medical experts say sun exposure is the easiest and most reliable way to get vitamin D, but even in warmer climates, people are not getting enough of the vitamin.

Vitamin D is needed for healthy bones, hearts, immune systems and to prevent cancer.

Miller figured out how to infuse the vitamin into coffee beans using techniques he uses to put resveratrol into CoffVee — his brand of coffee that offers consumers the same heart-healthy benefits as a glass of red wine.

He is calling his latest product Sunshine Blend CoffVee. It contains 400 IU of vitamin D per cup.

One cup of the coffee provides two-thirds of the daily recommended allowance of vitamin D.

“It’s something I have been thinking about for a while,” Miller said. “A lot of people are deficient in a critical part of their diet and that is due to a lack of vitamin D.”

Miller said it is estimated that 1 billion people worldwide have a vitamin D deficiency. That includes 42 percent of adults in the United States.

Miller launched his coffee company, Vera Roasting Company Inc., in Portsmouth in December 2015. In the first two months, close to 10,000 bags of the resveratrol-infused coffee were sold.

Miller said the company now has customers in all 50 states and has earned a U.S. patent for the infusion process.

The coffee-loving chemist hopes this is just the beginning.

“We’ve got a lot of ideas. Too many to implement right away,” Miller said.

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