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Love That Coffee

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  1. #1
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    Love That Coffee






    How to Drink Coffee

    Depending on how you use it, coffee can be a pick-me-up or a real downer.

    By Jennifer Warner
    WebMD Feature Reviewed By Brunilda Nazario, MD

    A cup of coffee with breakfast, another during the morning commute, a few lattes at the office, and an espresso after dinner -- is this a healthy habit or an addiction?

    Coffee's caffeine jolt can temporarily boost alertness, perk up performance, and possibly even improve concentration.

    But before you pour yourself another cup of joe, experts say it's important to remember coffee's main ingredient, caffeine, is a drug and not a nutrient required for good health like vitamins and minerals. And as with any drug, there are right ways and wrong ways to use it.

    "The right way is to know how it affects your body and your reasoning," says registered dietitian and epidemiologist Gail Frank. "The wrong way is to use it in an abusive way, and that means going without sleep and then drinking a lot of coffee to get the perk."

    In fact, too much caffeine may also lead to health problems like high blood pressure, brittle bones, trouble sleeping, and just plain irritability.

    "The other wrong way, as a parent, is to allow young children to use it and have it as crutch -- not only for the perk but because it may also displace nutrient-rich beverages for kids," says Frank, who is professor of nutrition at California State University at Long Beach.

    Frank says the caffeine in coffee is especially dangerous for young children and teenagers with growing bones because caffeine leeches much-needed calcium from the bones and may retard growth or make the bones weaker.

    Five milligrams of calcium is lost for every six ounces of coffee that is consumed, says Frank. But the good news is you can put back some of those lost nutrients by adding two tablespoons of milk to your coffee or making your espresso a latte.

    Good Coffee Habits

    Here are some other tips to help you keep your coffee habit as healthy as possible:


    Some people feel the buzz of caffeine more than others. Listen to your body and know when to say "when" to that extra cup of coffee, even if your friend says he can drink it 'til the cows come home and still get a good night's sleep.
    Most research suggests that drinking one to three cups of coffee a day (up to 300 milligrams of caffeine) does not seem to have any negative effects in most healthy people. However, pregnant women, children, people with heart disease or peptic ulcers, and the elderly may be more susceptible to the effects of caffeine and are advised to restrict caffeine.
    Be aware that the caffeine content of coffee varies widely depending on roasting and brewing methods as well as the size of the cup you're drinking. For example, a recent study showed that a 16-ounce cup of the house blend at Starbucks had an average of 259 milligrams of caffeine compared with only 143 milligrams in the same-sized cup of coffee at Dunkin Donuts.
    Although coffee is the main source of caffeine for many people, other items, such as soft drinks, tea, chocolate, and cold and headache medicines also contain caffeine and can add substantially to your daily caffeine quota.
    Regular coffee drinkers who skip their daily java fix may experience temporary "caffeine withdrawal" (usually in the form of a headache or drowsiness), but these symptoms will go away within 24-48 hours or after getting a new dose of caffeine.
    Some medications may interact with caffeine. Consult with your health care provider or pharmacist about potential interactions with caffeine whenever you take medications.

  2. #2
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    By Barbara A. Brehm, Ed.D



    The coffee break: It's a common ritual in everyone's workday. But many people are giving up caffeine, along with the other vices -- fat, alcohol, salt and sugar. Is this necessary?

    What are the health effects of caffeine?

    Heart attack. At one time, caffeine was thought to cause dangerous arrhythmias, so people prone to rhythm abnormalities were told to avoid caffeine. More recent studies dispute this idea, but to be on the safe side, many physicians warn people recovering from heart disease, or those prone to irregular heart beats, to go easy on caffeine.

    Blood pressure. Caffeine does slightly raise blood pressure, especially in those who do not regularly use it. Its effect on blood pressure is less pronounced in regular users. People with higher blood pressure should probably restrict caffeine consumption.

    High cholesterol. A 1983 study found that Norwegians drinking more than 9 cups of coffee per day showed elevations in serum cholesterol. More recent studies have not confirmed this association. Caffeine does raise blood fat levels.

    Gastrointestinal effects. Both regular and decaffeinated coffee increase gastric secretions and relax the esophageal sphincter. This causes that "sour stomach" feeling and the gastric reflux known as "heart burn." Coffee increases motility of the large intestine, which can lead to diarrhea, but decreases motility of the stomach and small intestine, which can cause indigestion.

    Osteoporosis. Caffeine increases calcium excretion, but no valid studies have isolated caffeine's effect on bone density. It would not hurt caffeine consumers to maintain an adequate calcium intake just in case.

    Cancer. Various studies have found small associations between caffeine and both pancreatic and bladder cancer, but again the evidence is not strong, so stay tuned. Most recent studies have not found a caffeine-cancer link.

    Breast disease. Researchers no longer believe that caffeine contributes to benign breast lumps, although this was once thought to be true.

    Pregnancy. Caffeine does not appear to cause birth defects, but may increase rates of miscarriage and low birth weight. Pregnant women are currently advised to avoid caffeine.

    Psychological effects. Too much caffeine (which can be any at all in nonusers) can cause anxiety, panic attacks and sleeplessness.

    Can caffeine consumption find a place in a healthful lifestyle?

    In a nutshell: perhaps, in small amounts, unless you experience negative side-effects. Let us qualify this statement.

    Perhaps: Studies on the health effects of coffee and caffeine continue to roll in. If you have been reading the newspapers over the last several years, you have no doubt seen the pendulum swing both ways. As previously stated, some studies have found an association between caffeine or coffee intake and negative health effects. And while most of these associations have been disputed by other studies, researchers may some day uncover very good reasons to get caffeine out of our diets entirely.

    In small amounts: Negative health effects have been found primarily in people (or laboratory animals) consuming moderate to large amounts of coffee per day (five cups or more). Caffeine lovers might be able to get away with one to three cups a day.

    Unless you experience negative side-effects: Response to caffeine varies widely. Some people find that the right dose of caffeine makes them feel alert, optimistic and productive. Others do not tolerate caffeine at all, and become nervous, anxious and depressed.

    Cutting down:

    If you find that caffeine interferes with your healthful lifestyle, there are some simple things you can do to slowly cut back, and eventually eliminate your consumption without experiencing the fatigue and headache associated with caffeine withdrawal. If you brew your own coffee, try mixing regular and decaf, gradually increasing the ratio of decaf to caffeinated. Tea drinkers try a lighter brew. Experiment with the wide assortment of decaffeinated coffees, teas and other beverages. If you decide to keep a small amount of caffeine in your life, limit it to one or two beverages early in the day.

  3. #3
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    Coffee = Satan
    Im 18

  4. #4
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    it would be easier to give up if it didn't smell so good. i seriously think i'll always drink it. n too much at that probably. very nice articles.

    you don't get what you wish for ~ you get what you work for

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  5. #5
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    Man I dont know if my three day a week 4 mile jog could could survive without its 2 cups prior.

  6. #6
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    use to drink 12 to 18 cups a day now drink cup here and there no more than 2 cups some days don't drink at all. but damn i love coffee

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    Quote Originally Posted by oilfield
    use to drink 12 to 18 cups a day now drink cup here and there no more than 2 cups some days don't drink at all. but damn i love coffee
    Wow, that's alot of coffee! You must have never slept.

  8. #8
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    I like my caffiene in pill form

  9. #9
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    I just recently gave up caffeine.. Thought I couldn't do my morning cardio before breakfast without it. Turns out I can

  10. #10
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    I gave up drugs, booze, and smoking, but I dont think I can quite coffee. I like it tooo much. oooh well maybe just have to cut back. Thanks for the info.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by oilfield
    use to drink 12 to 18 cups a day now drink cup here and there no more than 2 cups some days don't drink at all. but damn i love coffee
    Forget about cups, this is more convenient


  12. #12
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    I once made a very strong coffee and drank almost a liter of it. DidnĀ“t do anything for me.

  13. #13
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    more on coffee

    Caffeine: A mixed bag

    Surprise! It may protect against certain diseases. But be careful.

    Chances are good that while you're reading this you're drinking coffee. Millions of Americans can't quite function without a daily fix. A recent study shows nearly 90% of adults and at least three-quarters of kids have caffeine daily. Since 1977, the numbers have increased slightly for adults but dramatically for children. Although our grandparents preferred coffee and tea, our generation goes more for coffee and colas. For kids, sodas top the list.

    Why so much caffeine? Students, doctors and others who need to be up for long hours rely on it to stave off sleep. Travelers use caffeine to fight jet lag. Some athletes think it enhances performance. In recent studies, caffeine may be associated with reduced risk of gallbladder disease, type 2 diabetes, symptoms related to Parkinson's disease, and even liver cancer.

    Look over the list below. If you are someone who won't do well with extra stimulants in your life, caffeine probably isn't for you. For others, it's wise to keep it in check. As a general rule, limit your intake to around 200 milligrams a day (about the amount of caffeine in two cups of regular coffee, three cups of black tea or four cans of cola).

    Tedd Mitchell, M.D., is medical director of the Cooper Clinic's Wellness Program.

    Go to top


    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Review the facts

    Caffeine is a drug. It's the most commonly consumed drug in the world, and while most consumers have no significant problems with caffeine, it does have chemical effects on the body.

    Caffeine may be hidden. Most of us know the "big three" -- coffee, teas, colas -- but are unaware of other caffeine sources, like chocolate. Many labels don't list caffeine contents, making it difficult to track. For example, did you know that a Sunkist orange soda has about as much caffeine as a Coca-Cola?

    Caffeine is difficult to measure. Coffee tends to contain the most, followed by teas and soft drinks. But there are so many varieties, sizes and strengths of coffee that you can no longer make simple statements about how much is in your favorite cup of joe.

    Caffeine is a diuretic. It makes the body produce more urine than normal. That can be a problem if you already have urinary difficulties -- bladder control issues, prostate problems, etc.

    Caffeine is a stimulant. That's why some use it to improve mental alertness or to combat fatigue. But that's also why its users can develop insomnia, jitteriness, nervousness -- even heart palpitations or high blood pressure.

    Caffeine is a tough habit to kick. Caffeine withdrawal can bring on headaches, sleepiness, fatigue, sadness, irritability, inability to concentrate, nausea, and muscle aches and pains. These symptoms generally pass in a few days. If you want to kick caffeine, avoid problems by slowly decreasing your intake over several days or a few weeks. Because withdrawal's effects are real and potentially disruptive to daily life, some psychiatric researchers believe caffeine withdrawal should be included in the next Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), the psychiatrist's "bible" for determining mental disorders.
    .

  14. #14
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    Coffee is my only vice.

  15. #15
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    I only consume about a cup a day, maybe a cup every other day.

    I used to drink it a LOT, but now I have so little time I don't feel like twiddling my thumbs waiting for the coffee pot to finish... shoot.. I gotta get out the DOOR.



    -Matt
    5' 10", 173lbs of (almost) pure muscle.

    Bench: 270lbs
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    Curl: 145lbs (bar-style)
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    Live Long. Lift Strong. Ride Hard. Play Hard.

  16. #16
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    i just quit drinking it. n let me tell you if you drink it every day n stop be prepared for some major headaches when you quit. tapering off is best.

    you don't get what you wish for ~ you get what you work for

    ...






  17. #17
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    What made you quit?

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