To kick start the day, most of us resort to our favorite caffeinated drink every morning. Caffeine is such a huge part of our life that we almost always forget that it’s a powerful stimulant drug. Despite its benefits, like most things, too much caffeine can also harm your body. If you are a caffeine lover, TABIIB has created a list of reasons for going caffeine free or at least bringing down the amount of consumption.
Benefits of going caffeine free
1. Decreased Anxiety
In some situations, caffeine can give you an energy boost while in others it can make you irritated and agitated as it can make you anxious. Even though caffeine directly doesn’t cause anxiety, the consumption of caffeinated drinks can mimic all the symptoms of anxiety.
Anxiety is our body’s response to worrisome and threatening situations and often includes symptoms such as nervousness, restlessness, fast heart rate, rapid breathing, sweating, insomnia, and gastrointestinal issues. Interestingly, drinking caffeinated drinks can cause all the above symptoms, making it dangerous for people with pre-existing anxiety disorders. One study identified that the consumption of 480 mg dose of caffeine caused a panic attack in 61% of the patients with existing anxiety disorders while it did nothing to the other patients. So if you suffer from anxiety, giving up on caffeine might help you avoid panic attacks.
2. Improved Gastrointestinal Health
Avoiding caffeine can improve your gastrointestinal health as caffeine has various effects on your gastrointestinal health. For one, it can increase gut motility and cause loose stools or diarrhea. Caffeine can also increase urine output. Heartburn is another symptom that’s associated with caffeine-rich drinks such as coffee stimulates gastrin release and gastric acid secretion. Additionally, when caffeine worsens anxiety, it can also worsen gastrointestinal symptoms such as irritable bowel syndrome or inflammatory bowel disease.
3. Improved Sleep
People across the world drink caffeinated drinks such as tea, coffee, chocolate etc., to increase their alertness in the morning and kick-start the day. Caffeinated drinks act as a stimulant that increases alertness by suppressing sleep-inducing chemicals in the brain and increasing adrenaline levels. Even though caffeine might be helpful in some situations it does cause insomnia in various individuals as caffeine persists in the body for long periods of time. A cup of caffeinated drink in the morning might not disrupt your sleep schedule, but if you consume it later in the day it can disrupt your sleep cycle. Once in the body, it usually takes about 6 hours to eliminate half of the caffeine consumed. Although you might be dependent on your coffee or tea, if you suffer from insomnia giving up on caffeine might help your sleep schedule.
4. Reduced Issues With Blood Pressure
Eliminating caffeine will help you regulate your blood pressure as caffeine is known to cause a short term hike in the body’s blood pressure. Even though there is various evidence that caffeine increases blood pressure, researchers are still unclear about what causes the spike. It could be linked to the increase in adrenaline, however, there is little evidence supporting this. There is some evidence that shows that caffeine blocks a hormone that helps keep the arteries widened. So if you do have pre-existing issues with your blood pressure you might want to go caffeine free or consult a doctor to understand if your caffeine intake will have any effect on your body.
5. Improved Oral Health
Since oral health problems such as tooth decay are expensive to be treated. According to a few studies, caffeinated drinks such as coffee or tea can harm an individual’s oral health. Firstly, studies show that caffeine can damage the enamel of the teeth and cause dental caries. Secondly, the consumption of caffeinated drinks was also identified to decrease saliva production in the long run. The decreased saliva results in dry mouth and bad breath due to increased bacterial activity. Apart from that, coffee and tea are also famously known for causing teeth stains and tooth discoloration.
Our bodies are complex systems that can get affected by anything that’s consumed in excess including caffeine. Even though you might be dependent on that cup of coffee every few hours, you might want to consider giving up on it to help your overall health. Honestly, going caffeine free isn’t going to be an easy ride, but you can start small. You will see an improvement in your overall health by first limiting and then giving up caffeine. Additionally, if you want some help with the best alternatives for caffeinated drinks you should consult a nutritionist.