Give up coffee? You must be crazy.
I know — you’re “just curious.” You wouldn’t really give it up.
But, hypothetically, if you did, what are the benefits? What might all that caffeine be doing to your body that you’re not even realizing? And is coffee in moderation fine or do you have to quit cold turkey?
The truth is, there are several great benefits to drinking coffee, including:
- Improved energy levels
- Helps you burn fat
- Improved physical performance
- Lowers stroke, cancer, Parkinson’s, and Alzheimer’s risk
- And it’s a good source of certain nutrients and antioxidants
However, there are also some negatives that are pretty compelling as well.
The good news is, you don’t have to quit drinking coffee altogether. However, that daily espresso may be a bit too much depending on your body, diet, and health goals.
Here are seven benefits of giving up coffee:
1. Improved digestion
Caffeine is about one of the worst things you can take for the ol’ tummy. Sorry, coffee.
Caffeine in large amounts has not only been shown to cause diarrhea but even incontinence because of the natural laxative effect it has.
But that’s not all. Caffeine consumption has also been connected with the development of gastroesophageal reflux disease, a severe stomach condition.
2. May improve skin health
Surprisingly, caffeine has been shown to reduce collagen creation within the skin. If you’ve noticed your skin become worse since you became a caffeinaholic, that could be why.
But this is important for more than just your skin health. Collagen synthesis is also connected to nail growth and important for several processes within the body.
3. Improved sleep
It’s well-known that caffeine can affect your ability to fall asleep as well as your sleep quality if taken too close to bed (six hours to be exact).
However, it turns out that giving up caffeine could do much more for your sleep than you think. Studies have found that coffee can actually affect your sleep cycle, cause restlessness, and increase the time it takes to fall asleep even well after the effects of the caffeine should have left your body.
4. Improved ability to absorb nutrients
One of the more surprising benefits of giving up caffeine is that it may just help you absorb certain critical nutrients more easily.
A substance called a tannin which is located in caffeine has been shown to inhibit the absorption of certain nutrients, including:
- Certain B vitamins
- And iron
If you believe you may have an imbalanced diet, giving up coffee becomes even more important considering how critical the above nutrients are for your overall health.
5. Reduced symptoms of anxiety
You know that coffee gives you the jitters, but did you know that coffee stimulates your ‘fight or flight’ hormones?
Why does this matter? Because triggering these hormones can cause increased anxiety as well as nervousness and even panic attacks.
Giving up coffee can help reduce symptoms of anxiety across the board, especially for those with severe anxiety.
6. More balanced brain chemistry
Feel like coffee sometimes makes your brain feel out of whack? That’s because it does!
Jokes aside, this is one of the more nebulous but potentially significant benefits of giving up coffee.
Anyone who drinks a significant amount of coffee knows how it can affect their mood (and especially the withdrawals when you don’t get it), but researchers believe that coffee actually affects the body in a similar way to cocaine or a similar drug addiction. Youch.
The good news is drinking the occasional cup won’t have any effect on you. It seems that consistent consumption is required to create this addiction-level effect.
7. Balances hormones (in women)
Lastly, and perhaps most surprisingly caffeinated drinks such as coffee and tea have been found to affect estrogen levels in women.
Caffeine has not only been shown to worsen certain symptoms of menopause, but changes in estrogen levels have also been connected to several conditions such as ovarian and breast cancer.