Researchers are using coffee to diagnose COVID-19

Sniff carefully, Lindsey.
Sniff carefully, Lindsey.
Photo: Tom Williams (Getty Images)

The day can’t start until you’ve crammed your nose deep into a cup of joe, am I right? According to Daily Coffee News, coffee is more than a toasty, pleasantly pungent wake-up call: it’s also being used as a COVID-19 sniff test of sorts.

Recent studies indicate that up to 80% of people with COVID-19 suffer from anosmia, or loss of smell. That’s where coffee comes in. Researchers are suggesting that people take a deep whiff of their coffee every morning to see if their sense of smell has gone off, one of the earliest predictors of a positive COVID-19 test.

“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,” Tufts University School of Medicine Professor James Schwob recently told the University’s news service. “Or do the same with rubbing alcohol or your shampoo. 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.”

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Daily Coffee News adds that some researchers are taking the sniff test to the next level, using coffee in olfactory test strips and even encouraging medical professionals to use coffee as a diagnostic tool. Of course, smelling coffee is not a foolproof endeavor, and it’s certainly not an official COVID-19 testing mechanism. And while anosmia is common among COVID-19 patients, being able to smell doesn’t mean you’re COVID-free. When in doubt, just keep doing what you’re doing: mask up, stay home, and keep on sniffing those sweet, sweet beans until you’re vaccinated. Hell, you can sniff them after you’re vaccinated, too. Sniffing coffee rules.

Staff writer @ The Takeout, joke writer elsewhere. Wrangling dogs and pork shoulder in Chicago.

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Dead Elvis, Inc.

What a disgusting lede image.