Caffeine is known to bring a great deal of health benefits day in and day out. From helping you get clear, misty-looking skin, carry a sprightly vibe throughout the day, or win the gold in your favorite sport, caffeine just keeps winning the java-lover in you over.
But it’s not all rainbows and butterflies. Sometimes, having one too many cups of joe leads to unwanted side effects, turning a regular caffeine hit into a love-hate relationship.
Upset tummy is perhaps one of the *supposedly* negative effects of being too caffeine-happy. Hear a growling tummy or feel a nagging pain in the stomach? Must be your fourth cup of coffee, right?
But is caffeine really to blame?
According to Livestrong, caffeine shouldn’t cause you tummy agony.  If you observe getting one right after consuming your favourite caffeine (read: coffee, tea, chocolate, and yes - even frozen yogurt), there may be an underlying medical condition going on here, such as a “serious digestive condition.”
Caffeine worsens things for people suffering from ulcers. Imagine a sore opening in the lining of the digestive system, then caffeine - which could be highly acidic - passing through it. Ouch!
If you feel an upset tummy after your caffeine fix, chances are you have an allergic reaction to it. According to Livestrong:
“During an allergic reaction, chemicals are released that can cause inflammation to develop in your digestive system, leading to stomach pain, abdominal cramping, diarrhea, vomiting, nausea and bloating. Most allergic reactions cause varied symptoms throughout the body, not just in the gastrointestinal system.”
When we said coffee could be highly acidic, that’s because it contains a significant amount of chlorogenic acid.  According to the University of Maryland Medical Centre, chlorogenic acid can lead to gastritis, which causes stomach and abdominal pain, heartburn, nausea and vomiting. Aside from this, caffeine as a stimulant fires up the central nervous system that prompts the stomach to produce more acid than usual. The side effects of having excess stomach acid manifest in feeling bloated, burping and sheer discomfort.
Caffeine contains extra acids and molecules that trigger "gastrin release and gastric acid secretion."  Imagine that happening without any lining in the stomach!
To enjoy your first morning cup in full steam, try having some breakky with it.
It’s also possible that you get stomach pains post-caffeine because of the following:
If you're already suffering from an upset tummy, fret not. There are a few natural remedies you can do to ease the pain.
Steer clear (for now)
You may want to stay away from anything that will worsen your stomach upset. If you keep getting tummy aches post-caffeine, try to gradually lessen your caffeine intake and keep to an acceptable amount. (Here's how much caffeine you should have in a day.) Or better yet, drop caffeine altogether until you think you can ease into it again.
If you can't really get rid of your favorite cup of joe, then help your case by drinking lots of water! Caffeine may lead to dehydration, which in turn aggravates stomach aches. So keep refilling your water bottle; you'll find the pain goners in no time.
You can substitute your usual caffeine fix with something natural, like herbal tea. Brew some ginger tea, which has long been proven to be an effective remedy for stomach ache. If the flavor is too strong for you, go for mint-flavored ones, i.e. peppermint or spearmint. Not only are they commonly used to clear a clogged nose, they're also effective for indigestion.
If all else fails, take that much-needed painkiller. Keep in mind though - caffeine tends to interact with some forms of medicine and may amplify their effects (and side effects).
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Some research has suggested that caffeine may stimulate thermogenesis - a scientific name for the way your body generates heat and energy from the calories in your food; but nutrition experts say that this effect probably isn't enough to produce significant weight-loss. Caffeine may also reduce your desire to eat for a brief time, but again, there's no good evidence over the long-term that this effect leads to weight-loss. To date, no conclusive clinical studies have been done to determine the long-term effect of caffeine on weight loss, and the smaller studies that have been done show a lot of variability in the outcomes.
Want to hear something shocking?
Having your caffeine fix first thing in the morning will NOT perk you up.
But the good news is, you no longer need to make that sluggish early morning trip to the coffee-maker daily, nor join that long rush hour queue in your go-to café.
If you’re wondering whether we’re pulling some sick April Fool’s joke in the middle of August, there’s actually scientific evidence to all of this.
If you’re trying to lose weight (or at least not gain a few extra pounds), then the best thing to do is eat healthy and go to the gym more religiously, right?
But if you’ve been going at it for a while now and haven’t been seeing much progress, then you may want to look into something else.
Like your coffee consumption.
Now you may ask: what does an innocent cup of joe have to do with weight gain?
Let me tell you.
It’s not as innocent as it seem.
That cup of coffee you buy on your way to work? It may be sneaking in a few extra calories (more than you’d like and expect). And if you buy more than one cup a day, you may be racking up a few calories from a “dessert” that disguises itself as your go-to caffeine fix.