Coffee is one of the most popular beverages in the world, and for good reason. It can improve mood, metabolism, and physical and mental performance. But like anything else, too much of a good thing can be bad for you. In this article, we'll explore the potential negative side effects of coffee and how to avoid them.
Most types of coffee contain caffeine, a stimulant that can have both positive and negative effects on your body. Your genes play a role in how your body responds to caffeine, with some people being more sensitive than others. People who are not used to caffeine may experience symptoms after consuming what is normally considered a moderate dose. At higher doses, caffeine can lead to anxiety and nervousness.
In fact, caffeine-induced anxiety disorder is one of four caffeine-related syndromes listed in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM). Extremely high daily intakes of 1000 mg or more per day have been reported to cause jitters, nervousness and similar symptoms in most people, while even a moderate intake can cause similar effects in people sensitive to caffeine. In addition, modest doses have been shown to cause rapid breathing and increase stress levels when consumed all at once. A study of 25 healthy men found that those who ingested approximately 300 mg of caffeine experienced more than twice as much stress as those who took a placebo.
Interestingly, stress levels were similar between regular and less frequent caffeine users, suggesting that the compound may have the same effect on stress levels regardless of whether you drink it regularly. The caffeine content of coffee varies widely. As a reference, a large (“big”) coffee at Starbucks contains about 330mg of caffeine. Studies have found that increased caffeine intake seems to increase the amount of time it takes to fall asleep and may also decrease total sleep time, especially in older people. In contrast, low or moderate amounts of caffeine do not seem to affect sleep much in people considered “good sleepers”, or even in those with self-reported insomnia. For example, an energy shot may contain up to 350 mg of caffeine, while some energy drinks provide up to 500 mg per can.
Research has shown that although caffeine stays in the body for an average of five hours, the length of time can range from one and a half to nine hours, depending on the individual. The laxative effect of coffee has been attributed to the release of gastrin, a hormone produced by the stomach and accelerating activity in the colon. In addition, decaffeinated coffee has been shown to produce a similar response. However, caffeine itself also seems to stimulate bowel movements by increasing peristalsis, contractions that move food through the digestive tract. Contrary to popular belief, there is no evidence that coffee causes ulcers. A large study of more than 8,000 people found no relationship between the two.
On the other hand, some studies suggest that caffeinated beverages may worsen gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) in some people. This seems to be especially true in the case of coffee. In a small study, when five healthy adults drank caffeinated water, they experienced muscle relaxation that prevents stomach contents from moving into the throat, the hallmark of GERD. In addition, there have been several reports of rhabdomyolysis related to excessive caffeine consumption, although this is relatively rare. To reduce the risk of rhabdomyolysis, it is best to limit your intake to about 250 mg of caffeine per day unless you are used to consuming more. A detailed review suggests that although caffeine triggers certain brain chemicals in a similar way as cocaine and amphetamines do, it does not cause classic addiction as these drugs do.
In one study, 16 people who normally consumed high, moderate or no caffeine participated in a word test after not consuming caffeine during the night. Only high-caffeine users showed a bias for caffeine-related words and had strong cravings for caffeine. In another study, 213 caffeine users completed questionnaires after 16 hours of caffeine consumption. Daily users had greater increases in headaches, fatigue and other withdrawal symptoms than non-daily users.
Although the compound does not seem to cause a real addiction if you drink a lot of coffee or other caffeinated drinks on a regular basis it is very likely that you will become dependent on its effects. Caffeine can also increase blood pressure due to its stimulating effect on the nervous system. Therefore it is important to pay attention to the dosage and timing of caffeine especially if you already have high blood pressure. It can also cause a heart rhythm disturbance called atrial fibrillation which has been reported in young people who consumed energy drinks containing extremely high doses of caffeine.
In a controlled study when 51 patients with heart failure consumed 100 mg of caffeine per hour for five hours their heart rhythms and rhythms remained normal. A review of 41 studies found that although caffeinated energy drinks increased alertness and improved mood for several hours they were often more tired than usual the next day. Most research looking at the effects of the compound on urinary frequency has focused on elderly people and people with overactive bladder or incontinence. In one study 12 young and middle-aged people with overactive bladders...