Caffeine is a central nervous system stimulant of the methylxanthine class of psychoactive drugs. Wikipedia
Emotional roller coaster
We’ve all been annoyed by coworkers who are so jacked up on caffeine that they completely blow presentations for executives with incoherent 90 mph rambling. But caffeine’s effects go far beyond annoying anxiety jitters. Caffeine instigates irritability, depression and attention disorders. People drink caffeine to feel more alert and high-functioning, but in reality it decreases blood flow to the brain by up to 30 percent; this compromises memory and cognitive performance. Caffeine can also cause depression after its stimulating effects wear off.
Caffeine forces the body to excrete excessive amounts of calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium and trace minerals in the urine. It also interferes with optimum absorption of other vital nutrients.
Chronic heartburn and ulcers
Have you ever felt a burning sensation in your stomach after drinking a cup of java? That’s because coffee—including decaf— lessens pressure on the valve connecting the esophagus and the stomach; this allows stomach acids to flow upward into the esophagus, causing heartburn and even gastro-esophageal reflux disease. Also, coffee increases the production of hydrochloric acid. And excessive levels of hydrochloric acid are linked to a higher risk of developing ulcers.
Blood sugar roller coaster
Caffeine intake causes blood sugar to spike dramatically. And what goes up must come down. This spike causes the body to respond by overproducing insulin, which then causes blood sugar to plummet within just a few hours. A blood sugar crash can leave you feeling weak, shaky and entirely unable to concentrate. It can also make you crave candy and refined carbohydrates, starting the vicious cycle all over again. Insulin tells the body to store excess sugar as fat, so the caffeine blood sugar roller coaster leads to weight gain. If you are diabetic or hypoglycemic, you should avoid caffeine.
Caffeine’s Effect on Stress, Aging, & Hormones
Consuming caffeine causes the body to produce stress hormones. These, in turn, increase anxiety, irritability and muscle tension. They also exacerbate pain, indigestion and insomnia, plus compromise immune system functioning. Unnecessarily high levels of stress hormones prevent you from keeping your cool in the face of life’s everyday stresses—hence yelling at the kids, being rude to a cashier or worse yet, succumbing to road rage.
Speeding up the aging process
If you’re in your forties, you may have realized that you can’t drink alcohol like you could in your twenties. And you may have discovered that the same holds true for caffeine. Caffeine dehydrates the body, aging the skin and causing those dreaded wrinkles. It also ages the kidneys, inhibits DNA repair, and reduces the liver’s ability to do it’s job of detoxifying.
Caffeine also decreases production of hormones associated with youth, including DHEA and melatonin, pushing you downhill even faster.
Depressed adrenal function
The adrenal glands are thumb-sized, and one sits atop each kidney. The adrenal glands are the number one player in our overall energy level. Caffeine taxes the adrenals and can eventually lead to serious health problems involving inflammation, auto immune diseases and fatigue. Fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome are no day at the beach.
©Get Real Plan, LLC, 2009-2010
©Get Real Plan, LLC, 2009-2010