Top Form Tuesday: Time For Another Cup of Caffeine? Girls Will Need One Sooner Than Men

Being that tea was discovered over 5000 years ago and there is evidence from Africa in the 9th century that coffee was consumed there, it's clear that we aren't letting our caffeine go any time soon. The first few sips usually send the heart beating just a bit faster, blood pressure will surge slightly, and basically you get that energy boost. Most of this boost has to do with the release of adrenaline. And this is why night time caffeine keeps you away.. there is a release at night of adenosine which can control the release of adrenaline. If caffeine is around you release less adenosine and you are more likely to stay energized and not unwind.  And exactly how that works over time is that your body, typically trying to release sugar when you are in need of bursts of energy, will come to rely on the caffeine, and won't release the sugar as much. Exactly whether that is 'good' or 'bad' has not been determined. The effects of caffeine cannot be sorted out without looking at how you are getting the caffeine: coffee, tea, herbal drinks, or coco. Most of us are completely confused about how much caffeine is in our drinks. 100 mg is a good level to stop at. And your can of Red Bull only has about 80 mg, where as a chunk of chocolate (50 g worth) will have about 60 mg of caffeine. Those of you going with the big mug in the morning, you probably are getting in 140 mg of coffee. The Institute of Medicine and the FDDA are looking into the levels of caffeine in drinks, especially those with the highest caffeine content. The amount of caffeine effect will always be affected by how much you normally consume, whether you are a child or an adolescent, or a senior,and whether you are pregnant. Generally women metabolize caffeine faster than men: so our half life is about 2 hours and the half life for most men for a cup of coffee is 4 hours.However hormones and menstrual periods can effectively slow down caffeine metabolism and thus women's ability to metabolize caffeine may fluctuate more than a man's. So we can metabolize half the dosage of caffeine in half the time as men. None the less in 12-24 hours caffeine is gone from our system.
It is also a metabolic boost to fat burning. Exactly how that works with other efforts to burn fat (work outs, CoolSculpting) we just don't know. But I never leave any opportunity to burn fat on the table and consume a bit extra on high work out days and after the CoolSculpting sessions as well! So some consultation with your health care provider is sensible, as is moderation. Oddly the newest study shows that coco consumption in seniors may decrease risks of brain deterioration and improved brain function. Although they were drinking two cups a day, which means you better cut some calories some where else or there will be consequences to your waistline!

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