Coffee is a popular beverage that has been around for centuries, and it has been linked to a variety of health benefits. But is coffee good for the intestines? Recent research suggests that coffee can stimulate colon activity, and it may even help people with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).A 1998 study found that caffeinated coffee, decaffeinated coffee, and a 1000-calorie meal all stimulated the colon. Caffeinated coffee had the strongest effect, stimulating the colon 23 percent more than decaffeinated coffee and 60 percent more than plain water. Decaffeinated coffee still had an effect, though it was reduced compared to caffeinated coffee. When you drink a cup of coffee, it stimulates your body to release the hormones gastrin and cholecystokinin.
These hormones trigger the gastrocolic reflex, which stimulates the body to defecate. Some artificial sweeteners can also disrupt the digestive system and make things move. The general digestive effects of coffee, milk, and the time you drink it can contribute to the laxative effect. This communication between the stomach, brain, and colon is a normal response to eating. But coffee seems to have a disproportionate effect. People with IBS and older adults may be more likely to suffer from IBS because their intestines are more sensitive to the effects of coffee.
Although caffeine has been shown to cause an early urge to defecate and is a known stimulant, decaffeinated coffee can also stimulate bowel movements. Coffee, both decaffeinated and caffeinated, contains chlorogenic acid, which causes higher levels of stomach acid and increased gastric acid production. People who add dairy products, such as milk, to their coffee may have to have a bowel movement because of the lactose added to their drink. Consuming up to 400 milligrams of caffeine a day is safe without adverse effects, which is approximately the amount in four cups of coffee. But for people with IBS who have a hypersensitive gastrocolic reflex, research suggests that the possible laxative effect of coffee may stimulate bowel movements after drinking a cup of coffee. Overall, research suggests that coffee can be beneficial for some people's intestines. It stimulates colon activity and may even help people with IBS.
However, it's important to choose your coffee carefully to avoid discomfort. If you're really hoping to move your bowels, go get the Joe mug!.