Coffee and Your Health: How Much is Too Much?Lisanne Wellness Center
People have been drinking coffee to jolt them awake in the morning for centuries. Coffee got its start in Ethiopia in the 11th century, when the “magical bean” was believed to have healing properties. In the 15th century, coffee moved from private consumption to coffee houses in Persia, Syria, Egypt and Turkey. These “penny universities,” as they were later called in Europe for their ability to provide visitors with caffeine-stimulated intellectual conversation for a penny a cup, became increasingly popular. Coffee got its start in the new world in 1773 when American colonists revolted against the British tax on tea (The Boston Tea Party), dumping tea into the Boston Harbor.
Today, coffee is as much an American tradition as baseball. About 83% of Americans drink coffee, and most of these people drink 3 cups per day. Coffee contributes $30 billion to the GDP every year, and provides an affordable luxury for families in every financial bracket. Thankfully, all of this caffeine consumption is (mostly) for our benefit. Drinking a moderate amount of coffee (no more than 400 milligrams (mg) per day for adults) may be beneficial to your health. This equates to about 4 cups of coffee each day.
But Don’t Overdo It
While moderate coffee consumption (up to 4 cups per day) can have positive long-term health effects like minimizing the risk of type 2 diabetes and Parkinson’s, drinking much more than that can cause serious health concerns. On the mild end of the spectrum, people who drink too much coffee often experience headaches, nausea, vomiting, fevers, tremors, hyperventilation, dizziness, anxiety, tinnitus, and agitation. More severe symptoms include poor bone health, diminished sleep quality, and central nervous system damage. In a recent study, researchers even linked excessive caffeine consumption with clinical depression and anxiety.
Some participants in the numerous coffee research studies have experienced altered consciousness, seizures, and irregular heartbeats, and in 14 of the studies currently under review, some participants even died as a result of their caffeine consumption.
Are You Drinking too Much?
If you’re addicted to caffeine, you may be drinking 5, 6, or 7 cups of Joe a day. You may be tempted to kick the habit altogether considering the negative potential health effect, but the benefits of coffee are hard to ignore. Rather than give up the buzz altogether, try to find other avenues to getting the jolt and energy you need and cut yourself off at 4 cups of coffee.
Exercise: The jolt of energy you get from your morning cup of coffee shouldn’t be needed to wake you up in the morning. If you exercise regularly, rather than feeling tired, you’ll feel energized and ready to take on your day sans caffeine.
Water: Good old fashioned H2O has the power to give you energy, keep you hydrated, and flush out toxins that may leave you feeling groggy and sluggish throughout the day. Not to mention the fact that drinking water frequently will curb your craving for other beverages, like coffee.
B12: When you’re first cutting back on coffee, you’re likely to feel tired throughout the day. Ward off daytime fatigue with Activ B12. B12 is one of 8 B vitamins that converts your food into glucose, proving you with natural, sustainable energy throughout the day. You can also get B12 from eating fish, meat, eggs, nutritional yeast, and some fortified foods.
Power Greens: Power Greens is a super blend of completely natural vitamins, ionic trace minerals, enzymes, antioxidants, phytonutrients and symbiotic intestinal flora for maximum energy. As an added bonus, it also improves your metabolism, increases fat-burning power, and helps with detoxification.
Adrenocort B: If you’re struggling with Adrenal Fatigue (overall stress and fatigue triggered by overworked adrenal glands) you may be more reliant than usual on caffeine to get through the day. Adrenocort B regulates the body’s production of energy and helps support all of the systems of adrenal fatigue.
Want to learn how to kick your coffee habit or cut back while still feeling fresh and energized? Contact Lisanne Wellness Center to work with our Functional Medicine Specialist. You can also call us anytime at 713-461-WELL.