Thursday, August 18, 2016

What morning coffee is really doing to your body throughout the day

Coffee
  • Coffee can have a drastic effect on your body and mood
  • Caffeine increases alertness and stimulates the production of adrenaline
  • It also causes a spike in blood pressure and a tightening of the veins
  • Coffee gives your metabolism a kick but can also irritate your bladder
  • The jury is out on whether coffee is good or bad for you in the long run

by: Steven Trask


A cup or two of coffee is an early-morning ritual that many rely on to start the day.

Although people love to perk up with their morning cup, most are oblivious to the longer-term effects of coffee and caffeine.

With that in mind, lets lifts the lid on your coffee cup to discover what your wake-up brew really does to your body.



COFFEE IS A STIMULANT THAT 'SWITCHES ON' THE BRAIN

The most obvious physiological effect of drinking coffee is the feeling of alertness we get from caffeine.

Caffeine is a stimulant that travels to our brain and temporarily stops us from feeling tired.

It does this by blocking receptors for the chemical adenosine, a naturally-produced substance that regulates sleep patterns and makes us feel drowsy.

Caffeine also stimulates the production of adrenaline, the energy-inducing hormone responsible for coffee’s 'get up and go'.

Researchers at Harvard University have even found that coffee stimulates the production of mood-enhancing chemicals that can help stave off depression.

However, the brain gets used to coffee over time and these effects get blunted – explaining how we get dependent on caffeine (and cranky without it).


COFFEE CAUSES A TEMPORARY SPIKE IN BLOOD PRESSURE

Coffee can cause a temporary spike in blood pressure as the veins tighten and the heart works harder. In medical terms coffee acts as a 'vasoconstrictor'.

This is a fleeting reaction as the release of adrenaline increases your heart rate, and it typically dies down after about three to four hours.

While some suggest there is a link between drinking coffee and heart disease, the jury is still out on whether this is actually the case.


COFFEE SPEEDS UP YOUR METABOLISM BUT IRRITATES YOUR BOWELS

Coffee has a pronounced effect on the body’s metabolism.

It is a diuretic, meaning it causes the kidneys to release the fluid they are holding.

Coffee can also irritate the bladder and it speeds up the rate of constrictions in our bowels – explaining why we need to go to the bathroom soon after drinking a cup.

Other effects include stimulating the secretion of gastric juices in the stomach (which can irritate the bowels further if the stomach is empty) and prompting the release of cortisol – the hormone responsible for feelings of stress.


IT COULD EVEN GIVE YOUR SEX LIFE A KICK

It is a popular myth that caffeine can dampen your sex life.

Some studies go as far as to suggest that it actually lifts sex drive in men and women.

A 2015 study from the University of Texas found that men who drank two cups a day were almost 50 per cent less likely to suffer from erectile dysfunction.

And in 2006 a study on lab rats found that coffee stimulated areas of the female brain that regulated sex hormones.



Credit: DailyMail

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