How to Know If You Consume Too Much Caffeine
Are you feeling jumpy lately? Maybe you are consuming too much caffeine! Most of us, including me, cannot start our day without any caffeine intake. The most popular choice is a hot cup of coffee. But before you drink your next cup, do you really know how much caffeine is in your coffee cup?
Too much caffeine is bad for your health
A lot of things in this world, no matter how good they may be, can be bad with huge doses. The same is true for caffeine. The safest level that you are allowed to consume is only up to 400mg a day. And this is for healthy adults. If you have a heart condition or you are in your senior years, you may want to consider a lower limit for yourself. If you consume beyond what your body can handle, like 500mg to 600mg a day, a couple of side effects will manifest eventually.
These ailments include:
- Heart palpitations
- Muscle tremors
- Upset stomach
Too much caffeine will also make you jumpy. While that is not exactly a “serious illness” it can be quite embarrassing and unpleasant too. Case in point – watching an action or scary movie and feeling like you are constantly over the edge the whole time. Trust me when I say that it will remove the fun out of your movie date.
It is true that your body will adapt to regular consumption of caffeine soon enough. However, our bodies are not meant to be on constant state of alertness - which is one of the effects of caffeine.
Most of us drink coffee because caffeine keeps us alert as we go about our day. Personally, it gives me the adrenaline boost that I need especially when I have to work long hours. While that can be helpful, too much of it can cause certain disruptions in your sleep. If you fail to get the right amount of sleep, that can lead to even bigger problems.
We are not saying that you should not drink your coffee. You just have to make sure that you do so in moderation to keep your caffeine level low. Take note of the food and drinks that you consume to ensure that you are not going beyond your limit. That will help you get started.
Caffeine is everywhere
Acording to the International Coffee Organization, the amount that is in your coffee will depend on a couple of things. These include the origin of the beans, the composition included in the blend, the brewing method and the strength of the brew. For instance, Robusta coffee has twice that caffeine amount in Arabica coffee. Roasted or ground coffee brewed through the drip method has 60-180mg of caffeine in a 5oz cup. On the other hand, instant coffee only has 30-120mg per 5oz cup.
If you are counting your caffeine intake, you definitely should look beyond your coffee cup. With the 400mg limit for healthy adults, you may think that this limit means you can consume up to 3-4 instant coffee cups each day. That is not true.
You also need to consider that caffeine can also be found in other beverages. A can of cola also contains 30-60mg caffeine. Chocolate drinks also contain about 4-5mg of caffeine. A tea bag that is allowed to steep for 5 minutes can actually produce 0.402 mg per ml caffeine in your cup.
Even cooking or baking with chocolate (esp. dark chocolate) has 20-26mg of caffeine per ounce. You need to consider all of these factors when you are trying to cut back on your caffeine intake. You might think that substituting coffee with chocolate will help you cut back on caffeine.
Well, after reading this article, now you know better.