Most of us can agree that our days are incomplete without coffee. Whether it’s the coffee cup in the A.M. or P.M., it is essentially needed to head on to our activities. If you are not a coffee lover, tea could be your go-to drink in the morning or afternoon.
Caffeine- what the hype is about?
No matter if its tea or coffee, both take in caffeine as the major constituents. Statistically speaking, both tea and coffee are the most consumed beverages across the world respectively. Often regarded as the drug, caffeine is the naturally occurring ingredient used for thousands of years.
Coffee consumption is associated with an increase in physical and mental activity. However, there are a lot of confusing statements about the effect of caffeine. A few weeks back I was attending a webinar in which a renowned neuro physician in Peshawar, was talking about how caffeine can affect our brain health.
If you are also wondering what are the facts and fictions about caffeine, I suggest you read further;
Common myths about caffeine
Myth # 1
Caffeine is addictive
It is often assumed that caffeine is addictive and due to similar reasons, it is also referred to as a drug. Caffeine consumption is often perceived the same as any other addiction such as shopping, working etc. However, caffeine isn’t addictive but stopping the regular consumption of coffee can result in fatigue, headache and other associated signs and symptoms. Thus, it is advisable to gradually reduce the consumption of caffeine to overcome these signs and symptoms.
Myth # 2
Caffeine consumption can increase your risk of heart problems
Another misconception about caffeine consumption is that it can increase the risk of heart problems. While in turn, the consumption of caffeine isn’t related to the risk of cardiovascular diseases or an increase in cholesterol level. The myth lies in the observation that some people experiencing a sudden rise in blood pressure followed by caffeine consumption is usually due to their sensitivity towards caffeine consumption.
Anyone can be caffeine sensitive and I’ve seen a similar incidence where a friend of mine consumed 3-4 mugs of black coffee. Her heart rate got disturbed to the extent that we ultimately had to take her to Akbar medical center in Peshawar where she was treated.
Myth # 3
Caffeine can affect the health of pregnant women
Other than these, it is often considered that caffeine can affect the health of pregnant women in general and can be harmful to fetus development. Despite all these claims, studies reveal that consumption of caffeine in moderate amounts is quite safe for maternal as well as fetal health.
Myth # 4
Caffeine isn’t for children
Children are often advised to stay away from caffeine consumption due to the popular belief that their bodies are not able to process caffeine. However, there is no fact behind the claim as children’s bodies are capable of processing caffeine in the same way as adults. So, moderate consumption of caffeine isn’t harmful to children.
Myth # 5
People who regularly consume caffeine can develop osteoporosis
It is often assumed that people who consume caffeine have reduced bone density and loss of calcium from bones. Although caffeine consumption is associated with calcium loss in urine that loss isn’t to the extent that it can result in osteoporosis. However, people who regularly consume caffeine and have any risk factor for osteoporosis should consult their physician.
Myth # 6
Caffeine can cause cancer
Another common misconception about caffeine is that it can be carcinogenic. But there is no truth behind the claim as caffeine is not carcinogenic. Studies found no consistent connection between coffee consumption and cancer onset. So, caffeine consumption isn’t a risk factor for cancer.
Myth # 7
Caffeine from different sources can have a different effect on health
Caffeine obtained from different sources such as coffee, tea, drinks etc. It is commonly believed that caffeine obtained from different sources can have a variable impact on health. But no matter what the source of caffeine, it has a similar effect.
Caffeine is an active component of coffee and tea. Apart from tea and coffee, there are several other artificial caffeine sources. There are no alarming side effects of coffee consumption. However, moderation is the key!