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Twice in my life I have given up my addiction to coffee--when I was pregnant. Each time I said I wouldn't go back, but each time I did. And I've always felt a little guilty about my morning cup or two, like it is somehow a small character flaw that I can't function in the morning, or can't function as well, without my cup o' joe.
But recently I started wondering about the health effects of caffeine--was coffee triggering my hot flashes? Headaches? Does my heart "race" after a cup of espresso or am I imagining that?
I did some homework. Turns out, caffeine has many good qualities and my mind was put to rest in some ways, and I became more caution in others. It also turns out I am consuming a lot more caffeine than I thought.
Here are some caffeine facts, the good and the bad, that I learned:
1) Caffeine doesn't appear to trigger hot flashes (though there are scientists who say that it does) but, by consuming a hot beverage, my internal or "core" temp...
Alternative Names Diet - caffeine Side Effects Caffeine can lead to: A fast heart rate Anxiety Depression Difficulty sleeping Nausea Restlessness Tremors Urinating more often Vomiting Stopping caffeine abruptly may cause withdrawal symptoms, such as: Drowsiness Headaches Irritability Nausea Vomiting Reduce caffeine gradually to prevent any symptoms of withdrawal. The effect of caffeine on health has been widely studied. Large amounts of caffeine may decrease bone mass density, most likely by interfering with the body's ability to absorb calcium. This may lead to osteoporosis . Caffeine may cause or worsen painful, lumpy breasts ( fibrocystic disease ). Caffeine may have a negative effect on a child's nutrition if caffeinated drinks replace healthy drinks, such as milk. A child who consumes caffeine may also eat less, because caffeine reduces the appetite.
In my last post , I wrote about the good and the bad concerning caffeine. For better or worse, I can't--no--make that won't--give it up, at least not yet. But I am definitely cutting back, because I found out that there is an amazing amount of caffeine in places I would have never suspected and the evidence is that more than a little bit can trigger some of menopause's worst symptoms like hot flashes and headaches. And I don't need more of those.
I'm not proud of this but my typical day includes two cups of coffee, followed mid-day by a Starbucks Frappuccino®, then a Coke and some chocolate at 3, and (and this is the bad part) maybe an energy drink after I leave work and before I go to class (I am taking a nursing class on Monday and Wednesday evenings). Sometimes at night when I'm studying I'll have a little bit of ice cream smothered in chocolate sauce, my version of comfort food because I used to have that as a kid growing up in Indiana. And if I have a headache before be...
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