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Does Caffeine Cause Insomnia

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How Much Caffeine Does The Average Person Consume

Does coffee cause insomnia? Mythbusting

Legend has it that a goat herder by the name of Kaldi was the first to discover coffee thousands of years ago. The story goes that Kaldi noticed his goats eating a mysterious bean and hours later they had so much energy they couldnt sleep. The cultivation and trade of this bean began in the 15th century in Arabia, eventually spreading to neighboring countries and around the world.

Coffee arrived in America by the mid-1600s, but it wasnt until the Boston Tea Party revolt in 1773 that it became the preferred beverage choice by Americans . Nearly every coffee lover has spent a small fortune on a delicious Pumpkin Spice or Salted Caramel latte at Americas favorite coffee shop. In fact, Starbucks was responsible for a 700% increase in coffee consumption between 1995-2000.

90% of North American adults and 85% of Americans over the age of two consume at least one caffeinated beverage on a daily basis. In fact, caffeine is the most commonly used psychoactive drug in the world.

I know, youre shocked! So was I. As a parent of three kids , I was floored to read that I may be unknowingly drugging my kids with a psychoactive substance every day.

The average person consumes around 200 mg of caffeine per day with the highest consumers taking in closer to 380 mg. While coffee is the number one caffeinated beverage choice, those under 18 tend to prefer soft drinks and tea.

How Much Caffeine Is in Your Food?

Starbucks Venti Coffee

4 mg

Caffeine Alternatives To Help You Stay More Alert

Looking for something else besides coffee to help you stay awake in online meetings?

Caffeinated beverages may help, but too much of anything can become a bad thing.

As you load up on double espressos and high octane energy drinks, it can come back to bite you later at night and wreck your sleep.

Caffeine can also cause more trips to the bathroom.

Also, theres the very real risk of caffeine addiction which can lead to withdrawal symptoms.

The good news is that there are plenty of caffeine-free alternatives worth a try:

1) Sparkling water:

It gives you pop and fizz without the caffeine or sugar.

2) Flavored sparking water:

You can find fizzy water flavored with lime, strawberry, and many other flavors. You can also just add slices of your favorite fruit to a glass of fizzy water.

3) Coconut water:

A popular drink with natural vitamins and electrolytes.

4) Ginger root tea:

Ginger root has been linked to many health benefits. Its believed to fight fatigue by improving blood circulation and blood sugar levels.

5) Chicory Coffee:

Available online and made from roasted roots of the chicory plant, it tastes similar to coffee but is caffeine free.

6) Rooibos Tea:

Slightly sweet and caffeine free, Rooibos tea is made from leaves of a shrub native to South Africa.

7) Protein shakes

Did you know that too little protein can cause fatigue? The body needs it for fuel to help repair and build tissues.

8) Golden Milk :

Learn more:

Side Effects Of Too Much Caffeine

Coffee and tea are incredibly healthy beverages.

Most types contain caffeine, a substance that may boost your mood, metabolism and mental and physical performance (

However, high doses of caffeine may have unpleasant and even dangerous side effects.

Research has shown that your genes have a major influence on your tolerance to it. Some can consume much more caffeine than others without experiencing negative effects .

Whats more, individuals who arent used to caffeine may experience symptoms after consuming what is typically considered a moderate dose (

Here are 9 side effects of too much caffeine.

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What Are The Causes Of Insomnia During Pregnancy

Multiple factors can cause insomnia during pregnancy:

  • Discomfort: Increased weight and changed body composition can affect positioning and comfort in bed.
  • Disrupted Breathing: Growth of the uterus places pressure on the lungs, creating potential for breathing problems during sleep. Hormonal changes can increase snoring and the risk of central sleep apnea, which involves brief lapses in breath.
  • Reflux: Slower digestion can prompt disruptive gastroesophageal reflux in the evening.
  • Nocturia: Greater urinary frequency can create the need to get out of bed to go to the bathroom.
  • Restless Leg Syndrome: The exact cause is unknown, but pregnant women have a greater risk of RLS even if they have never had symptoms before becoming pregnant.

Studies have found that more than half of pregnant women report sleeping problems consistent with insomnia. In the first trimester, pregnant women frequently sleep more total hours, but the quality of their sleep decreases. After the first trimester, total sleep time decreases, with the most significant sleeping problems occurring during the third trimester.

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How Can I Tell If Caffeine Is Affecting My Sleep

Caffeine and Insomnia

Are you struggling with insomnia, headaches, or anxiety during the day? This could be a sign of caffeine overuse and dependence. Troubles during the night, like frequent awakenings, inability to fall asleep, and nighttime anxiety may also be a sign caffeine is interfering with your sleep . If you find yourself excessively sleepy during the day and caffeine isnt helping, it could be a sign you are sleep deprived from extended caffeine use. In that case, it may be time to put down the coffee and catch up on some much-needed rest.

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Added Caffeine Is An Unregulated Synthetic Chemical

Coffee and various teas, including green tea, matcha, and yerba mate, contain caffeine naturally.

But the caffeine found in sodas, energy drinks, energy gel packs, and caffeine pills and powders is rarely extracted from tea leaves or coffee grounds that would be prohibitively expensive.

The demand for added caffeine has far outstripped natural caffeine production since World War II.

Added caffeine is synthetically manufactured in pharmaceutical plants from chemical precursors like urea and chloroacetic acid.

It is usually made in China or sometimes in India or Germany.

Journalist and self-proclaimed caffeine addict Murray Carpenter, author of Caffeinated: How Our Daily Habit Helps, Hurts, and Hooks Us, traveled to China to check out the worlds largest caffeine plant while doing research for his book.

It was not the high-tech facility he imagined.

Heres how he described the caffeine factory in his book:

half the windows were smashed, and rags streamed out. Bags of stockpiled chemicals sat inside the broken first-floor windows. The place reeked a chemical stench to make you gag and a tall rusty tank leaked a tarry sludge.

He reveals that if you drink soda or energy drinks, youve almost certainly consumed caffeine produced there.

Lastly, dont be impressed if you see the words naturally caffeinated on a product label.

Its not unusual for manufacturers to ignore labeling requirements and use the synthetic version anyway.

Can Caffeine Cause Insomnia

While there are short-term performance benefits to caffeine consumption, overuse can lead to insomnia symptoms or worsen pre-existing insomnia. Consuming caffeine to stay awake at night may lead to sleeplessness, anxiety, frequent nighttime awakenings, and overall poorer sleep quality.

In addition, caffeine from sodas has been linked to increased severity of sleep-disordered breathing , which is the primary characteristic of Obstructive Sleep Apnea . Notably, this association was only found with caffeinated sodas, but not with coffee or tea, although it is unclear why. Regardless, those who suffer from sleep-disordered breathing may not know about their sleep disruption and find themselves attributing excessive daytime sleepiness to other causes. If you struggle with sleepiness during the day, it might be helpful to reevaluate your caffeine consumption, especially from sodas.

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Sweet Slumber: 7 Habits Of Highly Successful Sleepers

Each year, approximately 1 in 3 Americans suffer from insomnia. If youve ever been one of them, you know that insomnia can compromise your ability to concentrate, disturb your mood and degrade your general sense of well-being during the day. But you may not be aware that insomnia can lead to more serious health issues such as increased risk of developing high blood pressure, obesity, diabetes and heart disease. So getting a good nights sleep is a top health priority!

Faced with the frustration of inexplicable sleeplessness, many patients turn to over-the-counter or prescription sleep medications. These can be effective for short-term use but frequently lead to undesirable side effects such as daytime sleepiness, dry mouth and in some cases, even psychological or physical dependence.The first step in managing insomnia is to look for signs of treatable causes , but this search often turns up empty. In truth, with most cases of insomnia, no specific cause can be identified.

A much better approach is to use behavior therapy, which has been proven to produce long-lasting benefits without appreciable side effects. Behavior therapy begins with the adoption of good sleep habits and creation of a bedroom environment conducive to sleep. Once youve done these things, youll find that the quality of your sleep is much better, and the time required for you to fall asleep is much shorter. You might even find yourself becoming sleepy just by entering your bedroom.

Too Much Caffeine Is Linked To Psychiatric Disorders

Does Coffee Actually Cause Insomnia? 5 Caffeine Facts Explored || GutBusted

Its been recognized for decades that the symptoms of too much caffeine are very similar to those of many psychiatric disorders.

Enough caffeine can even create symptoms of anxiety in a healthy person that are indistinguishable from those experienced by anxiety disorder sufferers.

Some psychiatrists recommend that routine psychiatric assessments should include examining caffeine consumption since removing caffeine can be more beneficial than prescribing anti-anxiety drugs.

For now, the preferred term is caffeine use disorder.

Its been included as a condition for further study in the DSM-5.

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What Are Common Causes Of Insomnia

There are numerous potential causes of insomnia, and in many cases, multiple factors can be involved. Poor sleep can also trigger or worsen other health conditions, creating a complex chain of cause-and-effect for insomnia.

On a holistic level, insomnia is believed to be caused by a state of hyperarousal that disrupts falling asleep or staying asleep. Hyperarousal can be both mental and physical, and it can be triggered by a range of circumstances and health issues.

Anemia And Sleep: Can Anemia Cause Sleep Problems

So, can anemia cause insomnia?

Our research on this topic is still somewhat limited. Weve seen studies suggesting iron-deficiency insomnia could be an issue, as iron-deficiency anemia is usually linked to lower sleep quality.

To understand the link between anemia and insomnia, lets first discuss anemia. This is the condition where your body has a low supply of red blood cells. Your red blood cells are responsible for delivering oxygen throughout the body.

The most common form of anemia is caused by iron deficiency. We need iron to create the hemoglobin protein helping red blood cells to transport oxygen around the body.

Iron-deficiency anemia is more common as we get older. It also has a higher chance of occurring in pregnant women, who generally need a supplement of iron to produce more blood cells.

If you dont get enough iron, your bodys red blood cells cant operate properly to move oxygen around the body.

This leads to side effects ranging from dizziness and shortness of breath to weak hair and nails, and problems with healing. The most common symptoms are feelings of fatigue, sluggishness, and weakness.

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How Are Iron And Insomnia Linked How Does Iron Affect Sleep

So, we know anemia and sleep are connected, because lack of iron can make you feel fatigued. However, we havent answered the question, Why is insomnia a symptom of anemia?

Most people assume the feeling of fatigue would cause you to sleep more. However, theres a crucial difference between being fatigued, and being sleepy.

Fatigue isnt necessary a precursor to sleep. You can go to bed feeling exhausted, but the link between iron deficiency and sleep might mean you feel too exhausted to sleep.

Another answer to the question How does iron affect sleep? is it influences the way you feel. Anxiety is one of the biggest causes of insomnia, and its also a common symptom of anemia.

Anxiety stimulates your sympathetic nervous system, creating a sense of fight or flight panic in your body. When this happens, your production of cortisol increases, and your level of melatonin decreases.

Some studies indicate the issues responsible for worsening insomnia, like restless leg syndrome, are exacerbated by anemia. Research into restless legs syndrome and iron indicate a lack of iron in your blood stream can damage the action of neurotransmitters like dopamine.

Dopamine is especially important for RLS because it maintains muscle activity and movement. If youre not getting enough dopamine, this can lead to the involuntary spasms in RLS and hence insomnia.

Caffeine Content Of Different Caffeinated Drinks

Why can

The amount of caffeine in different drinks varies widely based on the drink and size.

Youre going to have to look up the amount in any caffeinated drinks that you have on a regular basis.

Here are a few drinks for reference:

  • Black coffee – 96 mg of caffeine
  • Coffee with espresso shot – 398 mg of caffeine
  • Pepsi – 63 mg of caffeine

Heres a more complete list of popular caffeinated drinks that you can buy.

Earlier, we saw that you probably want to aim for no more than 2 standard cups of coffee per day.

Some of the drinks on this list have more than that by themselves. An extra large coffee with an espresso shot can have up to 400 mg of caffeine – yikes.

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Youre Not The Only One Struggling To Stay Awake In An Online Meeting

Does this sound familiar?

Youre sitting in front a computer screen and your focus slowly starts to drift as a voice drones on.

You can feel yourself loosing the battle as you struggle to stay awake during an online meeting thats far from over.

Weve all been there.

While its great to be able connect with co-workers from the convenience of your home, meeting online brings with it new challenges.

Staying focused and awake has to be near the top of the list.

Between COVID lockdowns and business cost cutting, video conferencing has grown in popularity.

In past surveys, two thirds of workers were found to experience fatigue according to a National Safety Council survey. An Amerisleep survey found that as many 70% admitted to snoozing on the job.

Now, with more people than ever before working remotely, Im guessing millions of people battle fatigue every day and struggle to stay awake during online meetings.

Houston, weve got a problem

It should be obvious by now youre not the only one dealing with this issue.

The reasons people struggle are varied but include issues like poor sleep, monotonous topics, long work hours, and one too many meetings.

Regardless of why its happening to you, its all the same to your workday.

Theres the risk of embarrassment and missing out on important details that can come back to bite you.

The risk to your job performance and reputation

And long grueling meetings

How Does It Affect Natural Sleep Cycles

Have you ever wondered why sometimes you wake up and can remember your dreams and other times you swear you didnt dream at all? Being able to recall your dreams typically relates to which sleep cycle you were in when you woke up. When humans sleep, we go through four different stages of sleep rapid eye movement sleep, and three progressively deeper stages of non-rapid eye movement sleep.

Caffeine doesnt appear to have a large effect on REM sleep, which is the period where dreaming occurs. It does have an impact on NREM sleep, prolonging the time it takes to fall asleep, shortening total sleep time, worsening sleep quality, reducing deep sleep time, and resulting in more frequent awakenings.

The research on coffees effect on sleep is all over the map. Some studies say that it has no effect on sleep whatsoever, and other studies have linked it to conditions like insomnia and harmful changes in the sleep-wake cycle.

A 2016 systematic review looked at 58 studies that have been done on caffeines effect on sleep. They discovered that people respond differently to it based on age, weight, individual levels of sensitivity, genetics, habits of intake, and time of consumption. Just like the differences in its metabolism, every person is unique in the way their body responds when it comes to the effect on sleep.

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How Does Caffeine Detox Affect A Person Do You Recommend Cold Turkey Or Gradual Withdrawal

Dr. Ian Dunican:

This would be a personal thing. All I ever do is drink caffeine. I dont drink or smoke. So, when I have been off caffeine, its been tough. So, Im not sure on that one. It depends on the person.

Dr. Marta Maczaj:

Death before decaf! Just kidding! I would not recommend rapid detox. The individual will develop headaches. Caffeine is a vasoconstrictor, and removing caffeine causes vasodilation and can lead to headaches due to the vasodilation. The person can also feel much drowsier during the day and may have drowsy driving. I suggest a gradual withdrawal. Consider half caffeine and half decaf for all your cups of coffee for a few days, then decrease to one-third caffeine and two-thirds decaf for a few days, then one-quarter caffeine and three-quarters decaf for a few days, and then all decaf.

Dr. Amy Bender:

I recommend gradual. I didnt really drink caffeine until college and grad school about two cups a day every single day for years. For me, the gradual method worked really well when I went off caffeine. I eliminated coffee, but then I would replace it with black tea, and it took me two weeks to be to the point where I wasnt tired and exhausted from not having that much caffeine. I would be really tired in the morning and have a black tea. I may then be tired in the afternoon so I would have a green tea and then I just gradually started reducing that to only needing the green tea.

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