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What Makes Drinking Too Much Coffee Cause To Jitters?

Drinking Too Much Coffee cause to Jitters

Drinking Too Much Coffee cause to Jitters

Drinking Too Much Coffee cause to Jitters: All of us who have drank too much coffee know this experience: shaking hands, rapid heart rate, and an underlying feeling of anxiety. These side effects are often a result of consuming high levels of caffeine , hence the term “caffeine jitters.”

For many professionals in the sector (and even consumers), drinking and tasting coffee is part of their daily routine, making it somewhat inevitable. Now, many people want to regulate their caffeine consumption, especially those who are especially sensitive to this stimulant.

How does caffeine cause these physiological reactions? Are there ways to mitigate the effects of excessive consumption? To find out, I spoke to Dr. Samo Smrke of the University of Applied Sciences Zurich and Dr. Angela Zivkovic of the University of California, Davis . Read on and find out what they told me. 

What are the effects of caffeine on the body?

Caffeine is a natural stimulant that can be found in various food products, such as coffee, tea, cocoa, guarana, and yerba mate. Drinking Too Much Coffee cause to Jitters: Caffeine consumption is known to improve various cognitive and physical functions but many people decide to limit their intake for numerous reasons.

According to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), caffeine can be part of a healthy diet for most people, but consuming too much can be harmful for some. Ultimately, this depends on a wide range of factors, including:

For adults who are considered to be in good health, the FDA states that 400 mg of caffeine per day is a safe amount. Drinking Too Much Coffee cause to Jitters: This is equivalent to four to five cups of coffee, as one cup typically contains between 80 and 100 mg of caffeine.

In any case, the average amount of caffeine in coffee drinks can vary a bit. For example, a study carried out in  by the consumer association Which? revealed that there are “huge differences” in the caffeine content of drinks served by the main UK coffee chains. This was related to the number of espresso shots contained in the drink, as well as the amount of Robusta included in the coffee.

Why do people consume caffeine?

Dr. Samo Smrke is the director of the ZHAW School of Life Sciences and Facilities Management, Coffee Competence Center Section and Analytical Technologies. Drinking Too Much Coffee cause to Jitters: “As a molecule, caffeine is soluble in both water and lipids, so it can be absorbed by different systems in our body,” he says. “Studies have found that there are complex interactive mechanisms and metabolic pathways for caffeine in the body.”

When consumed in moderation, he claims that caffeine can improve alertness, attention, and physical performance. Samo explains that this is because caffeine initiates the release of dopamine in the brain, a neurotransmitter that can improve mood and motivation. He adds that, over time, caffeine can increase metabolic rate (and therefore help with weight loss), enhance long-term memory, and contribute to liver detoxification.

Also, there is evidence to suggest that safe levels of caffeine consumption can reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes, stroke, and liver and cardiovascular diseases, as well as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. Drinking Too Much Coffee cause to Jitters: This depends, to a large extent, on age and biological sex. Additionally, more clinical research is needed to better support these claims.

Dr. Angela Zivkovic is an associate professor in the Department of Nutrition at UC Davis, as well as a faculty member at the UC Davis Coffee Center. Drinking Too Much Coffee cause to Jitters: She explains that caffeine molecules travel through different mechanisms in the body.

For example, compounds that increase alertness are processed through one biochemical pathway, while compounds that increase anxiety are processed differently.nAngela adds that coffee contains other compounds that are supposedly beneficial for health, for example antioxidants such as polyphenols, but further research is needed.

Analyze the negative effects

Even consuming the recommended daily dose of caffeine, Samo explains that you can experience negative side effects.

Caffeine intake can temporarily increase heart rate, blood pressure, and the release of acid in the stomach (which can sometimes cause gastroesophageal reflux or acid reflux). Drinking Too Much Coffee cause to Jitters: Samo adds that for some people, even a small amount of caffeine can reduce control of their motor skills, trigger headaches or dizziness and cause insomnia, as well as worsen irritability, anxiety or depression.

As caffeine is a drug, higher levels of consumption over a prolonged period of time can lead to greater physical and psychological dependence. Now, it is important to note that these side effects are largely related to regular caffeine consumption above the recommended daily amount.

In this case, Samo explains that excessive caffeine intake, or a “caffeine overdose,” can have harmful effects on multiple systems in the body. Drinking Too Much Coffee cause to Jitters: He states that high rates of caffeine absorption into the central nervous system can cause confusion, delirium, severe headaches, and insomnia. Some people may even experience flashes of light, ringing, or increased sensitivity to touch or pain.

Effects on the cardiovascular system may include rapid or irregular heartbeats. The muscular system may experience spasms, sporadic movements, and muscle overextension. Drinking Too Much Coffee cause to Jitters: Effects on the gastric system, meanwhile, may include abdominal pain, nausea and vomiting. Ultimately, each person experiences these negative side effects differently and some factors, such as age and biological sex, play a role.

What is the caffeine “jitter”?

When a person is nervous, it usually means that they are restless and unable to relax. In some cases, drinking too much coffee can cause similar symptoms. Angela explains that the jittery effects of caffeine are a result of methylxanthine, a substance found naturally in foods.

Caffeine is the main methylxanthine in coffee and has stimulating effects on our central nervous system. Essentially, methylxanthine binds to adenosine receptors. Adenosine is an organic compound found in human cells that helps determine our energy levels.

As our adenosine levels increase throughout the day (meaning we have less energy and feel more tired), more adenosine binds to its receptors. Drinking Too Much Coffee cause to Jitters: When we drink coffee, methylxanthine binds to these receptors and therefore prevents adenosine from doing the same. Therefore, caffeine can make us feel more alert at any time of the day.

Now, according to Angela, once caffeine is metabolized and eliminated from the body, the accumulated adenosine can bind to the receptors. Drinking Too Much Coffee cause to Jitters: This causes a sudden onset of tiredness or “caffeine crash,” which can disrupt the circadian clock and cause irregular sleep patterns or even insomnia.

As for the “jitters” caused by caffeine, Angela says that its consumption can increase the level of cortisol in the body, which can lead to more stress-related behaviors. “You may start sweating, your heart beats faster and you get that nervous feeling. This, because your body has received the signal that there is some kind of danger nearby,” she says.

In addition to these symptoms, the arteries constrict. This causes blood to be diverted from the central organs to the extremities (arms and legs), which is a fight or flight response. Also, there may be an increase in blood pressure in the head, which can cause recurrent headaches and vision problems. Drinking Too Much Coffee cause to Jitters:  Drinking Too Much Coffee cause to Jitters: Angela adds that the physical fight-or-flight response caused by caffeine can lead to more stress and mental discomfort.

Do people experience these symptoms differently?

Since people’s caffeine thresholds can vary greatly, there will be some differences in how they experience the effects of caffeine. “There are genetic differences between people, [including the enzymes that break down caffeine],” Angela explains. For example, in the liver, cytochrome P450 enzymes are the first to convert caffeine into other substances.

“The activity of these cytochrome P450 enzymes can vary greatly from one person to another,” he adds. Ultimately, this means that some people metabolize coffee more slowly than others.

“For people who metabolize caffeine more slowly, drinking more than two cups of coffee a day is associated with a higher risk of heart attack,” says Angela. Drinking Too Much Coffee cause to Jitters: “It’s much more complicated than this, anyway, because cytochrome P450 enzymes also break down many other substances.”

He explains that the activity of cytochrome P450 enzymes depends, to a large extent, on each person’s diet and environment. Additionally, a person’s weight and body type will influence the rate of caffeine metabolism. Also, the amount of food you have eaten before drinking coffee.

“The length of time caffeine stays in the body, as well as the intensity with which it affects a person, varies so much that it is difficult to determine the amount of caffeine that can make a person feel nervous,” explains Angela.

Between 30 and 60 minutes after consumption, caffeine reaches its maximum level in the bloodstream. “The average time it takes to metabolize half of the caffeine in the body is about five hours,” explains Samo. Drinking Too Much Coffee cause to Jitters: “Although the time can vary between 1.5 and 9.5 hours depending on the person.”

How to mitigate the negative effects of caffeine?

By far the easiest way to avoid the negative symptoms of caffeine is to consume moderate amounts of coffee. “Continued consumption of caffeine above the recommended daily limit can cause serious health problems,” explains Samo. Drinking Too Much Coffee cause to Jitters: He adds that drinking more Arabica can help reduce caffeine consumption, as it contains about half as much caffeine as Robusta.

Although it is important to note that the amount of caffeine per serving of coffee varies depending on the dose, Samo estimates that 1 g of Arabica contains about 10 mg of caffeine, while 1 g of Robusta contains 20 mg of caffeine. Drinking Too Much Coffee cause to Jitters: He adds that this means caffeine levels can range from “70 mg in a traditional Italian Arabica espresso to 400 mg in a double shot of Fino Robusta.”

Additionally, decaffeinated coffee is an option, which typically contains between 2 and 15 mg of caffeine per 8 oz. serving, as well as naturally low-caffeine varieties such as Laurina and Aamosa.  Drinking Too Much Coffee cause to Jitters: Also, it is recommended to avoid drinking coffee on an empty stomach to slow down the absorption of caffeine and reduce the chance of suffering from acid reflux.

Although some claim that eating certain foods (especially bananas) can help prevent the caffeine “jitter,” there is little scientific evidence to substantiate these claims. Drinking Too Much Coffee cause to Jitters: If too much caffeine is consumed, the best solution is to drink plenty of water and refrain from any physical activity for a few hours to calm the nervous system.

 Drinking Too Much Coffee cause to Jitters: “A lot of people like to drink coffee and it has a number of benefits for them,” says Angela. “Studies report different effects for different demographic groups of people but the most important thing is what works best for you.”

In short, regularly consuming caffeine above the recommended daily limit can have negative side effects. Now, although it may vary from person to person, moderate coffee consumption is not likely to cause caffeine “jitters” or similar problems. Ultimately, by taking into account when and how often you drink coffee, you can reduce the likelihood of problems.


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