Caffeine - What are the benefits and side effects?

What is caffeine?

It is a colourless, rather bitter compound that is found in coffee, tea, chocolate and cola. It is also in numerous over the counter medicines and in many diet/weight loss products. It is a stimulant, and it is considered a psychoactive drug. It is one of the most commonly consumed drugs in this country. Drugmakers are required by law to note the amount of caffeine in their products; however, food and drink manufacturers do not need to. The caffeine that is removed out of coffee beans to produce decaffeinated coffee is then sold to drug businesses and cola makers.

It can be a welcome wake up drink in the morning, taken in that early morning cup of coffee. It also helps give a boost to help stay awake late in the day. However, the increase in energy or alertness isn’t necessarily instant as it takes about an hour for the results of caffeine to make its way through the bloodstream and into the system. It has advantages, and it has side effects. It helps keep us alert. It promotes the central nervous system. It is also said to improve physical and mental performance. It has a diuretic effect on the body.
Some research studies list it as a mood elevator and a pain reliever. Because of the increased alertness levels of those who take in caffeine, there has been improved efficiency in activities such as exams, driving and flying.

Here are some benefits of caffeine you may not be aware of:

Caffeine, when mixed with carbohydrates, can replenish muscle glycogen concentrations faster, after exercise.
Caffeine can help detox the liver and cleanse the colon when taken as a caffeine enema.
Caffeine can help to stimulate hair growth in balding men and women.
Caffeine can help relieve post-workout muscle pain by up to 50%.
Caffeine can relieve certain types of pain better than analgesics—
Caffeine may help prevent Alzheimer’s disease.
Caffeine increases stamina during exercise.

There are side effects of caffeine, though. Those are sleeping disorders, uneasiness, increased tension and anxiety-panic attacks, from merely drinking the amount of 300 mg. The quantity that triggers these side effects differ from person to person; nevertheless, children appear to have a lower tolerance of it because of their smaller body weight. The recommendations are for pregnant women to prevent it entirely. However, it is listed as a “safe food additive”. For those that take it frequently every day, going without it a day can cause withdrawal signs such as, headaches, irritation, an absence of energy and of course, drowsiness. These withdrawal signs are temporary though.

The following is a chart and the amount of caffeine in items you may use and take in daily.
180ml cup of coffee – 64mg to 150mg
150ml cup of tea- 40mg
350ml can of cola- 40mg
250ml hot cocoa 4mg
150g chocolate bar 25mg

Caffeine has been a massive part of Australian culture for a long time now and is probably here to stay. Multiple studies have found that a daily coffee intake of four cups is a safe amount. So don’t hesitate to visit Daisys By The Park for your favourite brew today!

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