How Many Cups Of Caffeine Consymed World Wide Caffeine Blues

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Caffeine Blues

Okay, I know this article isn’t going to be popular. Most of us are so addicted to caffeine that we don’t want to know anything about it. I’m writing this because when “Caffeine Blues” by Stephen Cherniske MS came out, I just knew I had to read it. Several years ago, I began to realize that coffee was much worse than we had been told, because I noticed that within ten to twenty minutes of a cappucino, I would get an arthritic pain in my wrist!

This book didn’t just tell me how bad coffee was – it told me how GOOD I would feel when I went completely caffeine free for two months. Somehow this book sold me on trying it. And it was right! For example, I no longer have the drained feeling that I sometimes used to get in the morning.

This is one of the best health books I have ever read. It is written by Stephen Cherniske, who is a clinical nutritionist. “Caffeine Blues” is incredibly easy to read and compelling. After reading it I realized that caffeine does NOT give us energy. In fact, it is a major CAUSE of LACK of energy. However, he explains that this drug is so powerful that you have to go three weeks to two months without caffeine before you feel the difference. And how many of us have ever done that? Hardly anyone.

As Cherniske waded through tons of information about caffeine, he began to see that, knowingly or unknowingly, almost every researcher is starting from the assumption that caffeine is okay. Why? Probably because they themselves were addicted to caffeine.

Caffeine is in coffee, tea, chocolate, cola, chuppa-chups, many soft drinks, some drugs, most ‘energy drinks’ and guarana.

A 6 oz cup:

Percolated coffee has about 120 mg of caffeine

Black tea has about 70 mg of caffeine

Green tea about 35 mg of caffeine

Leading cola 45 mg caffeine

Mountain Dew 54 mg caffeine

Brewed decaffeinated contains 5 mg of caffeine

Milk chocolate has 6 mg per ounces

Baking chocolate has 35 mg per ounces.

Caffeine is produced by more than eighty species of plants. The reason may well be survival. As it turns out, caffeine is a biological poison used by plants as a pesticide.

Caffeine is considered harmless simply because it is so widespread.

There is a brochure available in hospitals and other medically related areas: “What you should know about caffeine” published by the International Food Information Council (IFIC) in Washington DC. After many phone calls, Cherniske finally got a list of ‘supporters’ of IFIC. The list included Pepsi, Coca-Cola, M&M, Nutrasweet, Nestle and Hershey – all of which have caffeine in their drinks and food products. ‘Partners’ of IFIC included groups such as the National Association of Pediatric Nurses and the Children’s Advertising Review Unit of the Council of Better Business Bureau Inc. This brochure states that “caffeine is usually excreted within several hours of ingestion”. In fact, only 1% is excreted. The remaining 99% must be detoxified by the liver.

It can take up to 12 hours to detoxify a single cup of coffee.

Many studies regarding coffee and hypertension were flawed because the test studies only came from coffee for one or two weeks. It takes many more weeks than this for the body’s stress hormone levels to return to normal.

A drug’s ‘half-life’ is the time it takes the body to eliminate half of the dose. Caffeine is a drug. The half-life of a single dose of caffeine varies from three to TWELVE hours.

Caffeine puts your body into stress. A single dose of 250 milligrams of caffeine (equivalent to about 2.56 ounce cups of coffee) has been shown to increase levels of the stress hormone adrenaline (epinephrine) by over 200%.

Caffeine triggers a classic fight-or-flight response. The fight-or-flight response was designed for events that occurred only occasionally (such as a lion chasing you). Now we put our bodies in fight-or-flight every day with caffeine!!! Since we are in society, we do not respond in a fight-or-flight manner. Instead, other things can happen. For example, sugar and fat are dumped unused into the bloodstream. The sugar creates more stress. The fat clogs the arteries. The digestive system slows down or shuts down.

Not only is caffeine addictive, it also encourages other drug addictions like nicotine.

Caffeine does not give you energy. It stimulates your nervous system and adrenal glands. It’s not energy, it’s stress. Imagine going to a bank to get a loan. The loan advisor accepts your loan. But when you leave the bank, you notice the fine print – the loan must be repaid with 75% interest! The ‘energy’ you think you get from caffeine is really just a loan from the adrenals and liver, and the interest you have to pay is very high.

Stress is an important factor in disorders such as anxiety, insomnia, depression, wounds, rheumatoid arthritis, headaches, hypoglycemia, asthma, herpes, hypertension and heart disease. And yet hospitals give coffee and tea which puts your body under stress!!!

DHEA is our vitality hormone. Decreased levels of DHEA are a cause of aging. Caffeine consumption leads to DHEA deficiency.

Caffeine lowers the stress threshold of virtually everyone. That is, if you have had caffeine, it will be easier for you to suffer from emotional stress. (Therefore, when doing research designed to show how safe caffeine is, any test subject under significant stress is removed from the study).

Caffeine is implicated in stomach ulcers and irritable bowel syndrome: GABA is produced in the intestinal tract, where it soothes anxiety and stress. Caffeine interferes with the normal metabolism of GABA.

Caffeine disrupts sleep. Deep sleep is CRITICAL for good health. When there’s caffeine in your bloodstream, you’re unlikely to experience deep sleep at all!

Caffeine at any time of the day can cause sleep problems, especially if you are stressed.

Malnutrition is one of the most well-defined effects of habitual caffeine intake.

A single cup of coffee can reduce iron absorption from a meal by as much as 75%.

People do not develop a tolerance to caffeine’s anxiolytic effects. Rather, people simply become accustomed to the feelings of stress, irritability, and aggressiveness that the drug induces.

Caffeine contributes to depression in well-defined ways. This is mainly due to the withdrawal effect, which can cause headaches, depression and fatigue, even in light users (p. 111). Cherniske reported that 90% of the people who came to him suffering from depression and gave up caffeine completely for 2 months reported that their depression went away!

If you drink coffee (or tea or cola), you might think, “Well, I drink coffee and I’m not depressed.” It is necessary to state that everyone is different and also that depression can be subtle. Throughout the book, Cherniske suggests that you’ll never know the full effect the drug has on you until you experience what life is like caffeine-free (which takes two months to do). Over the years, Cherniske has heard similar responses from hundreds of clients: “Wow, I never realized caffeine made me (pick one: anxious, depressed, irritable).”

Students around the world use caffeine not only to stay awake, but they also believe that the drug will improve their performance in exams. However, solid research shows that as little as 100 milligrams of caffeine (one cup of coffee, two cups of cola) can cause a significant DECLINE in recall and reasoning.

When people are relaxed and given caffeine, caffeine does not significantly raise blood pressure. But how many people are relaxed? When people are stressed and get caffeine, blood pressure rises significantly.

Women who consumed more than 24 ounces of coffee (6 moderate cups) per day had nearly twice the risk of heart attack compared to non-coffee drinkers. Moderate coffee drinkers with high cholesterol had more than seven times the risk of heart attack, while heavy coffee drinkers had eighteen times the risk of non-coffee drinkers!

Caffeine depletes your stores of thiamin and other B vitamins, calcium, magnesium, potassium, iron and zinc.

Caffeine increases calcium loss and risk of osteoporosis.

In one large study, the risk of hip fracture for the women who consumed the most caffeine was 300% greater than it was for the group who consumed little or no caffeine.

Take the challenge! Most people have no idea what life would be like without the background of caffeine and stress hormones coursing through their veins. Even if you only have a few cups of coffee, chances are your personality is affected in ways that may be too subtle for you to associate with caffeine. I would like to encourage you to complete a trial without caffeine. You owe it to yourself.

Don’t go ‘cold turkey’. To avoid headaches, etc., when giving up caffeine, Cherniske recommends taking up to six weeks to get off it. Drink the same NUMBER of cups, but each week reduce the strength or amount in each cup.

There is much more information in this very easy to read and very interesting book. 440 pages. Read this book and you won’t have to spend so much on supplements!

Copyright ©: Stephanie Relfe – 2001

Permission is granted to use this article in whole or in part if you acknowledge the author and cite and link to www.relfe.com.

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