KEY FACTS ON CAFFEINE

•    Caffeine is a stimulant which occurs naturally in tea leaves and other plants like kola, coffee bean and cocoa pods among others.

•    It has no nutritional value. Hence, the body system does not primarily need it to perform any of its function.

•    According to research, it is known that Caffeine relaxes the muscles separating the Esophagus from the stomach. The result of this action is an increase in stomach acid up to the esophagus,thereby leading in ‘heartburn’.

•    A study conducted in 1980 by the US Food& Drug Administration discovered that one out of every five newborn rats had a birth defect or disability due to the administration of caffeine to its mother. This indicates that caffeine should be avoided by pregnant mothers.

•    Caffeine is said to react in the body like Cocaine. However, caffeine is legal while cocaine is not. Why? A big question.

•    Caffeine is among the list of restricted drugs by the International Olympics Committee due to its stimulating effect on sportsmen and women.

•    Regular users of Caffeine may have tendencies of being addicted to it. Do you agree with me that too much of everything is bad? This could be a good reason why those addicted to caffeine are often restless and find it difficult to concentrate. For students, it decreases learning ability.

•    Caffeine is said to be diuretic. When you take caffeine, you tend to urinate more often, thereby losing more water from your body. When water output becomes greater that water intake, it results in dehydration, even making it difficult for stooling to go easy. This situation can also cause constipation to those that need their food to be digested.

An adequate liquid is needed during digestion.

•    Regular intake of caffeine tends to increase a body chemical called Homocysteine. It is said to damage the wall of the arteries, thereby leading to cardio vascular disease where one experience irregular heartbeat due to a constricted blood vessel to the heart.

•    Consumption of a high amount of caffeine without any amount of milk can cause the body to lose calcium. Calcium &Magnesium loss is said to have a long-term effect on bone and muscle function.Thereby resulting in Osteoporosis, when one’s diet contains inadequate calcium.

It is advisable bone problem sufferers consult a doctor for a comprehensive medical analysis.

•    Some people are of the opinion that caffeine in coffee enables them to get through the difficult task. There is a tendency of becoming addicted to this drug-food called caffeine, which overtime deprive the body system of adequate sleep. This, in turn, results in fatigue and loss of concentration.

•    The effects of caffeine differ from person to person. Hence, many people do not care about the amount of caffeine they consume. What is moderate to one person may be excessive to the other, try to understand your body system.

•    Caffeine has a tendency of making some people super-active; it is a psychoactive drug just like Nicotine in a cigarette. These industries at times give the impression that they enhance flavorand not addiction. Is that true?

•    Once caffeine is ingested, it finds its way to the liver in tiny molecules. Enough water is usually required to detoxify the liver. If not, it burdens the liver.

•    Caffeine users may say ‘it sharpens the mind and keep them at alert’. What they experience is simply an increased heartbeat, dilated pupil and an increased blood pressure.

•    Some people believe caffeine enhances their mode and give them a lift. What they experience is simply caffeine stimulating the adrenaline, which in turn gives a boast. This boast is only temporal because this has a time frame. When it is over, the user returns to a normal state, but this time, they experience tiredness and stress. This often pushes the user to take another dose, and another, resulting in addiction in some cases.

•    Some people believe caffeine gives energy?Caffeine is a stimulant and not energy giver. The energy experienced after taking caffeine is a result of the body system struggling to adapt to increased blood flow stimulated by the caffeine.

•    Some people are of the opinion thatcaffeine loss weight. Is this true? It is the diuretic nature that brings aboutwater loss in the body and not fat loss.

If one decides to use a caffeinated beverage, what about the sugar added to give taste? Hence, caffeine loss water while sugar add calories.

Alternative to caffeine

•    Do not get addicted but if you are already,gradual withdrawal is the answer. However, ensure you visit a doctor.

•    Are you drowsy and need mental alertness,go for fruits like grape, pear, and apple among others. Why? They contain Boron(which increases the electrical activity in the human brain).

•    Do you experience fatigue, depression or anxiety? Research have shown that natural products such as Chilli pepper contain Capsaicin contains Capsaicin which produces a Feel-good hormone in part of the human brain called endorphins.

•    Are you in need of energy? Get regular exercise in an open air. Avoid stimulant, alcohol and fatty foods. Get a balanced diet, take a 10-minute nap during the day, especially when you feel very tired.

•    Are you in need of energy drink (with caffeine) to enhance your performance; why not go for plain water?

Plain water is so beneficial in the following ways:

–    Inadequate intake of water causes dehydration which in turn brings about fast aging. Water can reverse this action.

–    Water flushes out free radicals out of the body system.

–    Water enhances easy metabolism during digestion.

–    Little water during mild exercise is said to gradually ease out body pain.

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