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Caffeine

What is caffeine?
Caffeine is a natural compound that is white in color and bitter in taste. Foods like coffee beans, tea leaves, chocolate, coke and cocoa beans contain caffeine. Caffeine is quickly absorbed by the human body; it exerts its fullest effect thirty minutes after consumption, metabolized and eliminated from the body within four to six hours. Is caffeine good or bad for one’s health?

Pros of caffeine:
1. Boosts energy level and increases productivity.
2. Stimulates the central nervous system and augments alertness.
3. Reduces fatigue and fortifies memory.
4. Speeds metabolism, which helps lose weight.

Cons of caffeine:
1. Chronic consumption of caffeine can induce dependence; sudden reduced intake of caffeine may cause headache, congestion and nausea.

2. Increases heart rate, which may lead to heightened blood pressure and irregular heartbeats.

3. Obstructs body absorption of calcium and iron.

4. Decreases the chance of pregnancy.

5. May induce nervousness and affect sleep pattern.

6. Stimulates the secretion of gastric acid, an excess of which may damage the gastric mucosa.

7. Because caffeine is a natural diuretic, consuming a large amount of caffeine increases susceptibility to water loss and dehydration.

It is ideal to drink no more than one cup of coffee each day; although caffeine can be beneficial to your health sometimes, you should not consume any if you are early in your pregnancy, have a sensitive digestive system, or have diarrhea, iron deficiency anemia, irregular heartbeat or gastric ulcer. Should you have drunk multiple cups of coffee every day for a number of years and would like to stop this habit, you should reduce your coffee intake gradually. You should not stop drinking coffee all of a sudden, for it may cause serious withdrawal symptoms, such as nausea, headache, etc.

 

 
     

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