Coffee and Caffeine Influences on the Body


Coffee is one of the most common beverages consumed in the world. It is often consumed for its caffeine and contribution to energy levels. Coffee contains 80-135 mg of caffeine per cup (8 ounces), and most servings of coffee consumed are larger than 8 ounces. Coffee and caffeine affect each individual person differently, but it has been found to often cause abdominal distress. An upset stomach that follows the intake of coffee is often caused by the increase of metabolic activity. Caffeine makes you feel more energized and more capable of performing specific tasks, but you get these feelings from the effects it has on the body’s natural processes. It reacts with the adrenal gland to release extra epinephrine (commonly known as adrenaline), and the combination of these two stimulants increase numerous digestion processes. Coffee is also a diuretic, which leads to dehydration. Both dehydration and the irregularity of the metabolic reactions can result in an upset stomach.

Oftentimes people just need time to develop a tolerance and eventually adjust to the caffeine. However some bodies simply can’t handle it. The high levels in coffee can be extra hard to adjust to, so one might consider consuming less coffee to relieve the stomach irritation. By measuring a specific amount and keeping track of consumption you can monitor caffeine intake and be sure not to have more than your body can handle.

Trying other caffeinated beverages or foods may also help with relieving uncomfortable reactions. Beverages such as certain teas or sports drinks have lower levels of caffeine that the body can adjust to more easily. Not all tea and sport drink options contain the same levels, however, so it is important to check the nutrition label before adding something to your routine.

If trying these other caffeinated products still leaves you with abdominal discomfort, it could just be the presence of caffeine itself causing it. A balanced diet with the consumption of the recommended amount of each nutrient (45-65% of calories from carbohydrates, 20-35% from fats, and 10-35% from proteins) provides your body with the perfect combination to create its own energy. When the levels of each nutrient go off balance, it can result in the use of stored energy particles, which will lead to feelings of exhaustion. It is always important to be sure each meal has a balanced nutrient content by referring to the nutrition label.

Having an upset stomach can be disruptive to everyday tasks. It is important to identify the source of the problem and make changes to resolve it so you can feel your best everyday.


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