Although excessive amounts of caffeine can be detrimental to your health in the long run, you really don’t have to quit it cold turkey. So rather than going without your steaming cup of joe in the mornings, try to limit your caffeine intake and switch to herbal teas instead. Find out how caffeine affects your health and which teas can undo its negative effects.
1. Caffeine consumption may raise blood pressure
As a stimulant, coffee can excite the heart and cause shallow breathing. It also causes your adrenaline levels to spike, which raises your blood pressure reading. This is stressful on the cardiovascular system and can have fatal outcomes for individuals with heart conditions.
Try alternatives like hibiscus tea, which has shown to lower systolic blood pressure. Hibiscus tea has many antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects on blood vessel walls, and is able to improve their elasticity and ability to dilate. You should drink the tea consistently to maintain its positive results.
2. Caffeine consumption can cause increased anxiety
The effects of caffeine on the body include increased heart rate, increased adrenaline levels, and heightened senses. In combination, they can make some individuals feel overwhelmingly anxious and jittery.
If caffeine affects you in this way, try peppermint tea instead. The menthol in peppermint is actually a natural muscle relaxant, making it a go-to choice if you’re feeling especially irritable.
3. Caffeine inhibits collagen production in the skin
Coffee is a diuretic, which means it causes dehydration. That can directly affects your skin. Dehydrated skin causes inflammation and premature aging, as a result of collagen loss. This is because caffeine inhibits the enzyme prolidase, which plays a major role in collagen synthesis and production.
If you find yourself losing that glow, you may want to switch to green tea. Its free radical-fighting catechins, EGCG, reduces skin damage and prevents wrinkle formation. They have also been shown to revive dying skin cells and promote healthy new cells.
4. Caffeine can cause headaches
The combined effects of coffee being a diuretic and stimulant can cause sudden and intense headaches. Also, you’ll start to experience withdrawals about 12 to 24 hours after your last dose of caffeine, and not satisfying your craving can lead to headaches too.
Many herbal teas help with the throbs in your head. For example, ginger tea is known for its anti-inflammatory and pain relief properties while peppermint tea helps to relax the nerves, which in turn reduces the incidence of spasms in the gastrointestinal tract, which are responsible for inducing headache symptoms.
5. Caffeine may cause insomnia
Caffeine inhibits the activity of a neurotransmitter called Adenosine, which is one of your brain’s natural tranquilisers. This affects your ability to fall asleep, even when you’re tired.
Chamomile tea is a classic traditional herbal remedy that has been used to fight insomnia, anxiety, and stress. It promotes sleepiness while helping to calm upset stomachs and increases the production of a chemical that relaxes nerves and muscles, almost acting like a mild sedative. Remember to steep the leaves for at least 10 minutes before drinking, and you can rest assured you’ll have a good night’s sleep!
Written by Anna Fernandez