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Can you develop a caffeine intolerance from drinking too much coffee?

Okay, we will be serious today. Below is an article on how we got hooked on caffeine whilst working from home. The symptoms weren’t severe but we certainly developed symptoms of caffeine intolerance. It wasn’t quite an addiction, but for various reasons, the uptake of coffee shot up in our diet. Essentially, going from perhaps one or two coffees a day, we were on double that, and worst of all, the last coffee of the day was coming late in the day.

Can too much coffee lead to a caffeine intolerance?

Whilst working from home and during lockdown we put a lot of emphasis on eating healthily and properly, we did neglect one thing. We didn’t take too much care about what we were drinking. Of course, our usual routine of what we were drinking wouldn’t have been considered to be unhealthy in normal circumstances. But in fact, four cups of black coffee a day was causing us to suffer from intolerance symptoms.

These varied but the one symptom that really stood out was fatigue and extreme tiredness. For many, being lethargic is normal, but this was proper lethargy and fatigue. Whilst caffeine, be it in the form of sugary energy drinks, tea, or coffee is designed to give you a much-need pick-me-up in the afternoon, it can lead to uncomfortable instances. One of these notorious results is finding yourself wide awake at one in the morning because the caffeine has taken effect. Medical News Today did a study which backs up our own personal experience. You can find out more about that here.

How popular is a coffee intolerance?

There is just something about coffee isn’t there. A caffeine intolerance is one of the most popular intolerances that we have come across when doing our research online. Intolerance testing companies have reported that one of the most popular items that people have an intolerance too is caffeine. But what is it about coffee that makes it so popular? Some people love the taste. Some people love the smell. Others, including Healthy Food Reviews, use it a stimulant. The alternative sugary caffeinated drinks are mostly energy drinks.

The problem is, where does it stop? For every food and drink, there is only so much your body can take. If you desperately need it first thing in the morning and after you’ve had a quick nap at lunch, this is fine. It is for the double drinkers, including ourselves, that the struggle comes. Fatigue will eventually hit you. It won’t come straight away. Most symptoms of intolerance will appear up to 72 hours after you’ve ingested the offending item.

What does fatigue mean?

Fatigue is when your body is so tired it can’t literally do anything more. You can barely think, move and most certainly cannot exercise. Your muscles will seize up and you won’t be able to concentrate. It could have longer-term effects which eventually affect the heart. We don’t mean to scare you here but it is something to consider.

The reason you are most likely to get fatigued due to drinking too much coffee is if your body develops a caffeine intolerance. It may be, that you are just drinking too much. The thing is, you don’t always need to use caffeine as a stimulant. Our experience was a combination of a healthy diet and big breakfast, alongside a run or other exercise in the morning set us up perfectly. This is one way we are trying to wean ourselves off the coffee.

Coffee and calories

It wouldn’t be a Healthy Food Reviews blog without talking about calories. This time is about coffee and calories. Because a cup of coffee is meant to give you a boost in energy, many people think it is bursting with calories. But actually, plain coffee, or black coffee, contains almost no calories. If you are adding milk, this will add calories. In the same way, you add milk, sugar will also increase the calorie intake.

So, it is obvious why you might want to continue drinking coffee. It is a drink that gives you energy and doesn’t add anything around the waistline. But you do need to watch your intake. The resulting symptoms of a caffeine intolerance could lead to other symptoms occuring. Weight gain could be a result of fatigue and tiredness. This is because you have stopped exercising because you are too tired.

What are we doing to reduce our coffee intake?

The main thing we at Healthy Food Reviews have noticed is being wide awake at one in the morning. This is an indicator that we are drinking too much coffee. It also indicates the caffeine is being consumed too late in the day. So, whilst are not yet suffering from a caffeine intolerance or suffering from other symptoms, it is something we are keeping our eye on.

Drinking more water (similar calorie count) is something we have added to our healthy diet. Boredom has been a major factor in why so much caffeine has been consumed. We’ve tried to keep ourselves occupied. Every time we fancy a coffee, we get up and do something around the house. Essentially, Healthy Food Reviews are distracting themselves from wanting to drink coffee. At the moment, it is a tactic that is working. Tune in a couple of months and we’ll let you know how successful it has been.

Whilst caffeine is not part of our healthy diet advice, we do have it included in our ingredients. And remember, if you are looking for something thirst-quenching to give you a boost in the morning, have a look at our Apple and Raspberry smoothie!

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