Health Effects of Caffeine

It is the perfect companion for those hectic days or sleepless nights cramming to finish school projects. It keeps us awake. It increases our mental alertness. It boosts our energy. It makes our heartbeat faster. But sometimes, too much of it gives us headaches and the jitters. No, it’s not teenage love. It’s caffeine.

What is caffeine?

Caffeine is a natural stimulant drug produced in the seeds and leaves of many plants. It can also be produced artificially. Caffeine is in coffee, chocolate, tea, soft drinks, energy drinks, as well as pain relievers and many other over-the-counter drugs. It stimulates our central nervous system, which explains the temporary energy boost. While we don’t store caffeine in our body, we feel its effects usually for about 6 hours.

Effects of caffeine

Our sensitivity to caffeine depends largely on our body size. In general, the smaller you are, the less caffeine you need to feel the side effects. In addition, you will soon develop less sensitivity to caffeine if you regularly consume a lot of it. This means that you may need more caffeine to produce same effects.

A caffeine fix can temporarily increase our mental and physical alertness. Consumed in higher doses, however, it can cause headaches, dizziness, and anxiety. It can also disrupt our normal sleep. Additionally, since it is a diuretic, caffeine can cause you to urinate more.

It may also cause your body to lose calcium, leading to bone deterioration over time. Regularly consuming caffeine in large amount can exacerbate certain heart problems. it can worsen stress and anxiety.

While caffeine can be a treatment for migraine headaches, it can also worsen it for some people. For those caffeine-dependent on caffeine who are quitting caffeine suddenly, withdrawal symptoms such as irritability, tiredness, and headaches develop.

Moderation

Caffeine is safe when consumed in moderate amounts. So what is the acceptable and safe amount? 200-300 mg of caffeine daily is a moderate amount for adults, according to nutritionists. Adolescents and teens should limit caffeine intake to no more than 100 mg daily. Young children should get even less.

Cutting back

If you are planning to cut back your caffeine intake, you should do it slowly to avoid getting headaches and other withdrawal symptoms. Cut your consumption by replacing coffee and caffeinated sodas with non-caffeinated drinks such as water, caffeine-free teas, and caffeine-free sodas. It’s normal to feel tired when you cut back. So what you need is more rest and sleep. Your energy levels will be back to normal in no time.