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Better Sleep and Support Blog

Are you Drinking Too Much Caffeine?

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It’s no doubt that drinking coffee is an almost universal hobby. Folks just love the dark toasty blends that help get them up each morning. And whether they cake them with sugars and milk or opt for plain and black, coffee is one of the most universally loved substances. For all ages and all locations.

But when it comes down to it, including caffeine intakes, daily doses of sugars, etc., how many loyal coffee drinkers stop to look at the nutritional value of their habits? Even though we know beverages like coffee can create a “bad” habit, such as downing too many unhealthy calories, that doesn’t mean we look for a way to make it healthier, or even consider how much caffeine we’re putting into their bodies on a daily basis.

So are you drinking too much caffeine? Depends who you talk to. According to some doctors, coffee drinkers feel sick before they will drink too much of the substance. While others argue that more than a couple cups is overdoing it. Others still say it depends on each individual and how they react to the chemical. Because caffeine essentially allows the brain to feel “excited” without regulation, how much you take in will have a direct effect on how alert you feel that day. It’s also worth noting that some people are genetically more susceptible to its effects than others.

Essentially, it’s up to you and your doctor as to whether or not you’re consuming too much caffeine. If you experience recurring side effects, such as headaches or itching, then it’s likely time to cut back. You can even switch to decaf and see how you feel. But if you feel as healthy as ever, double check with your doctor, but you might just not be affected as heavily by caffeine.

The Side Effects: Caffeine and Lack of Sleep

Aside from stomach cramping and a mind that just can’t calm down, there are a number of side effects that can come from taking in too much caffeine. Most notably, an inability to sleep. When drinking coffee or tea (or soda) too late in the evening, it’s likely that the body hasn’t had enough time to properly digest the substance. This calls for a sleepless night, restless movement, and generally a crashing or tired feeling the following morning. Not only from the lack of sleep, but from “coming down” from your caffeine effects.

However, those who regularly drink caffeine, or don’t strongly react to its effects, are less likely to lose sleep from a late night cup of Joe. For whatever reason, their body processes the chemical differently and is able to subdue its effects. The problem, however, is there’s no way to tell without actually trying it.

How to Curb Caffeine’s Effects

If you’re worried about how your body might react, start small. Or if you’ve already ingested too big of a cup, follow up with a large dose of water to help cool down caffeine’s hold. The water will work to provide instant results, while eating or simply waiting it out can allow for coffee too completely dissolve on its own.

Another way to cut down is by drinking decaf, or even half caff, which consists of beans that are half caffeinated, have decaf. Hot alternatives, such as tea or cider can also work to warm you up without the heavy dose of alertness. Whatever your preference, there are plenty of ways to cut down on caffeine. Even without cutting coffee out of your life.

To learn more about caffeine or to ensure you’re not drinking too much, talk with your doctor or nutritionist today. 

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