Drinking a cup of coffee first thing in the morning blunts the energy-boosting effects of caffeine and may lead to increased tolerance of the stimulant. This counterintuitive fact is explained in engaging visual form by Ryoko Iwata, ”a Japanese coffee-lover living in Seattle” on her appropriately titled blog, I Love Coffee. Iwata based her post on research gathered by Steven Miller, a Ph.D. candidate at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences in Bethesda. As told by Forbes.
Read More: Learn This IMPORTANT Facts About Coffee
When is the best time to drink coffee???????
Check out the time lapse to see when cortisol levels drop; and coffee is needed!
Source: News.Mic pic.twitter.com/6C06gzz0L9
— Amora Coffee (@AmoraCoffee) September 28, 2016
Everybody is different, of course, but we are all guided by the 24-hour hormonal cycle referred to as the circadian clock. These basic rhythms are preprogrammed into us genetically and although we can mess with our cycles through lifestyle habits, the major factor in their regulation is sunlight. One of the things that this clock controls in humans is the release of the hormone called ‘cortisol’ which makes us feel alert and awake.
— Tasting Table (@TastingTable) October 3, 2016
Drinking a cup of coffee first thing in the morning blunts the energy-boosting effects of caffeine and may lead to increased tolerance of the stimulant. This counterintuitive fact is explained in engaging visual form by Ryoko Iwata, ”a Japanese coffee-lover living in Seattle” on her appropriately titled blog, I Love Coffee. Iwata based her post on research gathered by Steven Miller, a Ph.D. candidate at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences in Bethesda.
Read More: Who Is To Blame For That Coffee Addiction?
— Ryoko Iwata (@ilovecoffeejp) September 29, 2016
Here’s the thing. The peak production of cortisol occurs between 8–9 am (under normal circumstances.) This means that at the time that many people are having their first cup of coffee on the way to work, their bodies are actually “naturally caffeinating” the most effectively! According to Iwata, the effects of caffeine consumption at times of peak cortisol levels actually diminishes the effectiveness of the additional stimulation. Worse still, “By consuming caffeine when it is not needed, your body will build a faster tolerance to it, and the buzz you get will greatly diminish.”
I already had 4 important meals, FYI. pic.twitter.com/xQdKV0wpBy
— Ryoko Iwata (@ilovecoffeejp) October 1, 2016
Cortisol is also considered a stress-related hormone and consumption of caffeine have been shown to increase the production of cortisol when timed at periods of peak cortisol levels. An increased tolerance for caffeine can, therefore, lead to a rise of cortisol levels which can disturb circadian rhythms and have other deleterious effects on your health.
I always mess up my first cup of coffee because I haven’t had my coffee. pic.twitter.com/ugB9Fzqy6A
— Ryoko Iwata (@ilovecoffeejp) October 4, 2016
Iwata, as her blog title suggests, loves coffee and has articulated what she considers to be the optimal timing of your coffee intake to experience maximum enjoyment with minimal negative effects. The times of peak cortisol levels in most people are between 8-9 am, 12-1 pm and 5:30-6:30 pm. Therefore, timing your “coffee breaks” (an apt term) between 9:30-11:30 and 1:30 and 5:00 takes advantage of the dips in your cortisol levels when you need a boost the most (see graphic by Iwata below.)
Current status pic.twitter.com/FrtJnIHEsY
— Ryoko Iwata (@ilovecoffeejp) October 3, 2016
Put this way, the traditional idea of a “coffee break” makes a lot of sense. I almost wonder if the idea of having coffee first thing is a habit created by the coffee industry to get us to all drink more coffee! What Iwata’s chart does not take into account is coffee consumption by early risers before 8 am, when many of us have our first cups. This raises the question of whether to have three coffees a day (probably too much for most people, but not for me) or to forgo one of the periods Miller’s research suggests.
What Time Do You Have Your First Coffee?
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