Our BodyOur GuysOur Nutrition

Did You Get the Caffeine Boost You Expected?

Caffeine is the number one stimulant used in the world, and athletes often consume caffeine for performance boost in training or competition. Have you tried this or are going to try using caffeine as performance stimulant? First check your sport guidelines. Some sports do have acceptable levels of caffeine for competition. Some individuals get high blood pressure from caffeine consumption, other reports have equated high caffeine intake with risks of heart attacks. What we have learned is that depending upon your genetics, you may respond favorably or not so favorably to caffeine consumption. In fact the newest research shows that you have a 50% RISK (one in 2 individuals) of not metabolizing caffeine favorably! How can you know, only through testing!

Caffeine the socially-acceptable stimulant.

Caffeine puts some bounce in your step, on average people walk an extra 1000 steps when they consume caffeine in a day than when they do not. So caffeine can also be a boost to sports performance by increasing both The Institute of Medicine and the FDDA are looking into the levels of caffeine in drinks, especially those with the highest caffeine content. Caffeine will give you more endurance for sports like long runs or swims.

Coffee can ward off diabetes, but apparently you have to drink 6 or more cups a day, so you do have to be committed, and that may exceed the recommended amounts you really should have. But, it may not be the caffeine itself in this case that is the important ingredient, The women in one retrospective study of almost 30,000 people showed that decaffeinated drinkers were even less likely to get diabetes. And the most perplexing new data to me, as a physician, is the new study showing the cancer fighting ability of coffee’s antioxidant components which apparently can increase DNA repair and promote more tumor suppressor proteins! This effect is especially important in some women Information recently released about uterine cancer risk. Youjin Je, a doctoral candidate in the lab of Edward Giovannucci, MD, ScD, from the Department of Nutrition and Epidemiology at the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston, Massachusetts, and Cancer Epidemiology, They showed that if a woman consumed at least 4 cups of coffee per day she was at significantly lower risk of uterine cancer.

Focus, and energy.

Caffeine produces these effects by waking up the cerebral cortex to produce the positive effects on attention, thought, language, and memory. And caffeine from tea and chocolate coco can provide antioxidant sources that are also anti-aging, and anti-heart disease and anti-Alzheimer’s And the amount of caffeine we should consume is probably the first question I get asked when it comes up at health check up appointments. The effects of caffeine cannot be sorted out without looking at how you are getting the caffeine: coffee, tea, herbal drinks, or coco.

Caffeine is a variety of natural substances, we process each differently.

Most caffeine drinkers will notice that it takes about 4.5 hours for the caffeine you consume to pass through your system Some people are fast metabolizers, other slower. Interestingly those who are fast metabolizers of coffee will not have an impact on sleep if they consume their coffee late. Slow metabolizers will have sleep disruption and even get an hour less sleep a night if they consume coffee too late.

What we call caffeine is actually a xanthine alkaloid that gets metabolized in our liver to three main components known as dimethylxanthines: mainily paraxanthin, and theobromine and lastly theophylline. Each of these is further metabolized and secreted into the urine. So each caffeine containing product we consume has a variety of the chemical components that we think of collectively as caffeine. Thus the buzz has big variety to it, and therein, a lot of the appeal. And the buzz keeps coming. Caffeine can persist in your system for at least 12 hours.

Or perhaps it’s some of the other beneficial properties of drinks like coffee and tea which contain a significant number of anti-oxidants such as polyphenols (caffeic acid and chlorogenic acid), catechins, and flavonoids. The polyphenols are known to raise homocysteine, and these anti-oxidants freely drip through your fancy filters, so fuss away with preparation, you won’t be ruining your coffee’s benefits. And a new rat study showed that the liver is detoxified by glutathione S-transferase which is an enzyme found in coffee. So all that avoidance of coffee during your ‘cleanses’, and now you find out it was good for your liver all along!

High and low consumption, and your gender will affect your response to caffeine

The amount of caffeine effect will always be affected by how much you normally consume, whether you are a child or an adolescent, or a senior,and whether you are pregnant. Women as a general rule seem to metabolize caffeine about 25% faster than men do. The hormones you are taking, such as the pill, may affect how quickly you metabolize your caffeine as well, with some study saying that the pill can slow caffeine metabolism and prolong the effects. Women don’t really get ‘addicted’ to caffeine, but it can be a powerful habit, especially if you are consuming a lot. The sometimes jittery feeling has more to do with excessive adrenal response, not the focused brain response, that actually can make someone feel more anxious than focused. The adrenal surge produced by caffeine can also continue to stimulate adrenal release into the night and block the physiologic adenosine release which normally restricts adrenaline release so you can get a good night sleep.So some consultation with your health care provider is sensible, as is moderation. Oddly, or not so odd to big caffeine aficionados, one study shows that coco consumption in seniors may decrease risks of free radical damage in our body thus preventing premature again and even providing some cancer protection.

How you like it: Caffeinated beverages and their content.

A cup of coffee has about 100 mg of caffeine, and it is recommended that adults have no more than 400 mg daily. Total dosage Well, total dosage most gynos would recommend if you are pregnant or have migraines is actually optimal is about 100 mg per day. A. big mug of coffee might have already contained 120 mg of caffeine, unless you were drinking instant, which is typically less caffeinated! So, probably not. Perhaps tomorrow start with a 75 mg mug of tea, and maybe you will get a small second!

Caffeine vs Coffee

Although not all caffeine comes from caffeinated beverages, and most of us fail to realize how much caffeine we get from hidden sources. Some of the decaffeinated products have enough residual caffeine to keep a pretty hefty dose left in the drink, the sort of five to one ratio.There are now hundreds of brands of caffeinated beverages, most of them pops. According to Dr. Kennedy-Hagan, RD, LDN from Eastern Illinois University not all pops are high in caffeine. In fact “A 12oz can of 7Up, Sprite, Mug Root Beer or Fanta soda, either sweetened or diet, contains no caffeine. Other popular sodas, such as various varieties of Coca-Cola, Pepsi and Mountain Dew range from 35-54 mg caffeine per 12 oz serving. Consuming one can per day is minimal, but the caffeine in a 6-pack would add up if consumed throughout the day.“ Which may be a good thing as medical studies show that pop in the range of 100-150 mg consumption will show improved attention, mood, psychomotor performance, and working memory. Although these studies have been done in adults, and they never really study withdrawal symptoms on top of the symptoms of the initial focus!

Focus can mean lots of things.

Like all things at the end of the day, it’s all relative. Goldilocks had it right, too much or too If you want to analyze your caffeine consumption in light of your whole diet the researchers at the U of I have a good tool for you to use. You can access the Nutrition Analysis Tool at the University of Illinois.

The Eye Popping Breakthrough: The genetics of Coffee Consumption: The Argument that Caffeine is BAD for you, and Why this only applies to some people

The Bad effects of caffeine reported, are not as numerous as the good effects, non-regular drinkers of coffee can have a brief increased blood pressure after coffee consumption, especially over indulgent consumption by anyone. But this may be due to other compounds in coffee that activate the sympathetic system and thus is not likely to happen when you swig a pop with caffeine.

Athletes and us weekend warriors use caffeine as an athletic stimulant to aid our performance. And Research has showing that this can work. But the endurance benefits are affected by how you metabolize the caffeine though the CYP1A2 gene. If you have the wrong gene you need to monitor consumption and your cardiovascular response carefully, and get your health care provider to tailor your consumption to your response.

And if you are struggling with your blood cholesterol know that some of the substances, especially, diterpenoids in unfiltered coffee can raise plasma bad (LDL) cholesterol and lower god (HDL) cholesterol. In this case you may want to know your lipoprotein genetics to understand if you genetically are predisposed to processing cholesterol incorrectly.

At Womenshealthpractice.com we believe in prioritized medicine, so come in to discuss!


Suzanne Trupin, MD, Board Certified Obstetrician and Gynecologist and owner of Women's Health Practice, Hada Cosmetic Medicine, and Hatha Yoga and Fitness

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *