Written by: Emma Anius
When we think of addictive substances, usually the first thing that comes to mind is cigarettes or drugs, but caffeine is just as addictive. It is the most widely used substance in the world and is used in a lot of everyday items that you wouldn’t even consider such as coffee, tea, soft drinks, chocolate, over-the-counter medications. Although if over used it has addictive tendencies and occasionally makes people reliant on having their morning coffee to be able to operate for the day it is legal and very easy to gain access to.
So if it is legal why is having too much caffeine such a big deal? Caffeine does have its benefits, and depending on how it affects you it may not be a problem. But if it comes to the point where you need a cup of coffee to be able to function properly and you experience withdrawal symptoms this is when it becomes problematic.
Your overall caffeine consumption should be less than 300 mg a day, which is about 2 to 4 cups of brewed coffee- this is a safe range. Unless you’re sensitive to caffeine, you shouldn’t have any negative side effects. But if you drink more than 500 mg a day, you may experience nervousness, insomnia, restlessness, irritability, increased heartbeat, stomach upset or muscle tremors, excessive urination, anxiety and depression.
While drinking a cup of coffee to stimulate your nervous system and get an extra boost may not always be a bad thing, drinking too much caffeine can over stimulate your body and cause a range of negative side effects. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) states that too much caffeine can cause you to get jittery, as well as cause dizziness, headaches and nervousness. Consuming large amounts of caffeine may also cause your heart rate to increase and for those of you with high blood pressure, drinking caffeine can raise it.
Caffeine has also been known to disrupt a good nights sleep, it is not stored in the body, but you may feel its effects up to 6 hours if you’re sensitive to it, so having a cup right before bed may not be such a good idea. The Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) noted that caffeine changes the way your body behaves, and consuming too much may get in the way of how your brain settles down for sleep. So if you must have a cup of coffee to help you get through the day try to limit your intake to the morning, as this will give it time to work its way out of your system before you fall asleep at night.
Drinking coffee can also cause problems if you are pregnant; studies suggest that having a high intake of caffeine may lead to miscarriages. If you have a sleeping disorder, high blood pressure, or a heart condition you should look into eliminating caffeine from your diet completely, unless your doctor says otherwise.
Trying to cut down on your caffeine consumption is never easy, so the best way is to cut back slowly. If you are getting any negative side effects from caffeine or are becoming dependent and don’t know what to replace it with. You may be able to get the same boost of energy from eating a healthy snack, such as raw vegetables and dip.
Looking after your body is the key to healthy living.
If you have no time to exercise or don’t know where to begin:
Medicine ball twists x 20, push ups x 15, side lunge x 10, lunge x 10, plank x 30 seconds:
Medicine ball twists x 50, push ups x 25, side lunge x 20, lunge x 25, plank x 60 seconds
- For help with the exercises go to www.facebook.com/cyanfitness and view the photos