Here's what can happen to our bodies when we drink coffee on an empty stomach


Coffee is such a popular beverage that its consumption has exceeded that of water in many countries around the world. The caffeine in coffee can improve mood, brain function, and overall performance. It may also help with weight loss and protect against diseases such as type 2 diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease and heart disease. Many people like to drink coffee first thing in the morning. However, drinking it on an empty stomach could harm your health.

Coffee and heartburn: is there a correlation?

It is very fashionable that drinking on an empty stomach can stimulate the production of stomach acid. It is well known that coffee can irritate the stomach and aggravate the symptoms of intestinal disorders such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Many people also suffer from heartburn, ulcers, nausea, acid reflux and indigestion. Drinking a cup of coffee on an empty stomach can be especially dangerous because there are no other foods to keep the acid from damaging the stomach lining. However, research has not found a strong link between coffee and digestive problems, whether you drink it on an empty stomach or not.

What to do if you have problems digestive

While a small percentage of people are extremely sensitive to coffee and regularly suffer from heartburn, vomiting or indigestion, the frequency and severity of these symptoms remain constant, whether the coffee is drunk on an empty stomach or with food. However, it is important to pay attention to how your body reacts. If you have digestive problems after drinking coffee on an empty stomach, you should adjust your intake accordingly. We know that drinking coffee on an empty stomach can increase levels of the stress hormone cortisol. This hormone is produced by the adrenal glands and helps regulate metabolism, blood pressure and blood sugar.

Coffee and cortisol

The rate of cortisol naturally peaks upon waking, declines throughout the day, and reaches its minimum at the onset of sleep. Interestingly, coffee stimulates the production of cortisol. Therefore, some experts say that drinking coffee first thing in the morning, when cortisol levels are already high, can be dangerous. Cortisol production in response to coffee is significantly reduced in all regular coffee drinkers. The regular drinker does not normally experience an increase in cortisol. There is no scientific evidence to suggest that drinking coffee on a full stomach can reduce this reaction. Also, any increase in cortisol levels seems episodic and temporary.

There is little reason to believe that such a short spike could lead to long-term health complications. In short, the negative effects of chronically high levels of this hormone are more likely to be due to a health condition such as Cushing’s syndrome than coffee drinking. Coffee can also have some negative side effects whether drunk on an empty stomach or not. Caffeine can be addictive, and some people’s genetics may make them particularly sensitive to this substance.

Regular coffee consumption can alter brain chemistry, requiring higher amounts of caffeine higher to produce the same effects. This is why most experts agree that it is necessary to limit caffeine consumption to approximately 400 mg per day, or the equivalent of 4 to 5 cups (0.95 to 1.12 litre) of coffee. Effects can last up to 7 hours in adults. Coffee can also disturb sleep, especially if you drink it in the second part of the day.

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