Caffeine is a substance that most people consume on a daily basis. According to statistics, one cup of coffee is consumed every four seconds around the world. Now, while most people take caffeine in pill, capsule, or liquid form, many people ingest it in its purest form-in the beverage medium-drinking coffee.
Caffeine is the second most popular mind-altering substance in the world, after alcohol, but you may not know it can do much more than help you stay awake and alert. Caffeine is one of the most widely used psychoactive substances in the world, and it’s been used for centuries as an analgesic, stimulant, and psychoactive drug. You can find it in a variety of foods and drinks, but the amount of caffeine you consume can easily change how you feel.
Here’s How Caffeine Affects Your Body:
- Makes You More Alert
Caffeine is a natural stimulant found in coffee, tea, chocolate, energy drinks, and prescription and over-the-counter medications, among other products. Because caffeine is a stimulant, many people rely on caffeine to help them focus, stay alert, and combat fatigue. However, caffeine does not just make you more alert; it also increases your heart rate and blood pressure, so should be consumed in moderation.
- Increase Activity in Your Brain and Nervous System
Coffee-loving dieters often look to caffeine as a secret weapon to help them lose weight. Not only does a cup of hawaiian coffee or any coffee for that matter seem to get us out of bed, but the caffeine in coffee and other caffeinated drinks appear to increase activity in your brain and nervous system, thereby increasing calorie burn and helping you lose weight.
- It Has Potentially Harmful Side Effects
Caffeine can be one of the most beneficial compounds in coffee, but it also has a dark side. Caffeine has proven health benefits, including improved mental alertness, reduced anxiety, and weight loss. However, it also has potentially harmful side effects, including restlessness, irritability, and insomnia. As caffeine is a well-known stimulant, this means it affects brain function and behavior. While some people feel slight, temporary effects from caffeine, others experience longer, potentially negative, effects. If you think that caffeine is affecting you negatively, talk to your healthcare provider about other potential options to help you manage the irritability or restlessness you would normally use caffeine for, including caffeine alternatives such as certain pain relievers, over-the-counter non-caffeine pills, or decaffeinated drinks.
- It Can Prevent the Release of Adenosine
Caffeine, that magical little concoction you rely on to stay awake, alert, and on top of your game, has come under fire recently. The Food and Drug Administration has identified caffeine as a drug, which means it can affect the way you feel and function. Caffeine makes you more alert, increases your body temperature, and stimulates your central nervous system. It can also prevent the release of adenosine, which relaxes your brain and body, and this activation can suppress other receptors that are activated by adenosine. An example of this is the adenosine receptor A1 (AR-A1), which suppresses the adenosine receptor A2 (AR-A2), which opens up blood vessels in the brain. Caffeine can help prevent this suppression, reducing or preventing drowsiness and improving alertness. It blocks receptors for adenosine, a neurotransmitter that tells your brain when to rest. Scientists believe caffeine blocks about 79% of adenosine receptors in the brain, meaning people may find it harder to relax and sleep if they consume too much of it.
- It Boosts Your Energy
Let’s face it, most of us can’t function without coffee, and even more of us can’t function without caffeine. The effects of caffeine are not only felt in the brain but just about everywhere in your body. Caffeine is a stimulant that affects your central nervous system and boosts your energy, helping you get through the day’s activities.
Caffeine is the world’s most popular stimulant, powering our morning jolt of coffee or the mid-day cup of joe. Caffeine has been popular for thousands of years, inspiring superstitions over its powers, from the belief that it cures toothache to the belief that it increases sexual pleasure. Today, it is a popular ingredient in dietary supplements and energy drinks and, for most people, works to give them that little extra boost of energy that they need each day.