How Much Coffee Is Too Much?
Many adults start their day with a cup (or two or three...) of coffee—counting on that boost of energy from caffeine to get going. While some studies indicate there are modest health benefits associated with drinking coffee, how much is too much and how do you know if you should cut back on your coffee intake?
When it comes to caffeine—a stimulant that affects the central nervous system, increasing heart rate and blood flow—different people have different tolerance levels. Some can drink 10 caffeinated beverages—coffee or tea, for example—every day without adverse effects, and others get jittery from just one cup. For most people, 400-500 milligrams of caffeine a day—about two standard cups of coffee and two cups of tea—doesn't produce unwanted side effects.
Too much caffeine can cause a racing heart rate, dizziness, blurry vision, feelings of restlessness and irritability, and insomnia. The boost it provides is short-term, resulting in fatigue and energy slumps as it wears off. In general, if you rely on coffee to get you through your day and experience extreme withdrawal symptoms without a cup in hand, it's probably time to cut back.
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