Ah the coffee, most adults love it because it’s one hell of a drug. Each morning, you drag yourself out of bed and stumble down the kitchen. You feel lazy and bleary-eyed. As soon as you guzzle your morning dose of some java, you’re suddenly perked up. Amazing, right?
Well, science has proven how coffee benefits health. It can boost energy levels and brain activity, it can help burn fat (yes, it can help in weight loss), it can lower your risk of type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and dementia, and it can help you live longer.
However, coffee, just like anything that contains caffeine, can become bad for the health if it's consumed in excessive amounts.
There is such a thing as caffeine overdose and it’s dangerous, too. Here are the 19 bad things that could happen to you if you drink too much coffee.
1. Increased Heartbeat
Also known as palpitations, this is the feeling that your heart is racing and you can’t seem to control it. Coffee contains caffeine, which is a natural stimulant. This is why when you drink anything with caffeine, you feel energized.
Don’t worry if you drink moderate amounts of coffee, you’re perfectly safe. However, if you have a complicating heart condition such as angina or you had experienced a heart attack in the past, you should refrain from drinking coffee or at least, talk to your cardiologist on your coffee intake limit.
Caffeine, the primary component of most coffee has been identified as a common trigger for heartburn. This chemical may also relax the esophagus, contributing to gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). Aside from this, coffee is naturally acidic and this can irritate the stomach lining, stimulating the release of serum gastrin levels.
When drinking moderate amounts of coffee, you won’t feel the symptom of jitters or restlessness. However, if you drink too much coffee, you may feel more unusually alert, leading to jitters. Caffeine boosts adrenaline levels that may increase your blood pressure, make you sweaty and have jittery sensations. This chemical speeds up the central nervous system, causing you to feel more jumpy than usual.
Caffeine acts as a laxative by inducing contraction in both the small and large intestine muscles. This will lead to gastrointestinal disturbance particularly diarrhea. Coffee may also trigger stomach cramps but when you drink more than three cups a day, you may have diarrhea. This can be dangerous if you become dehydrated.
Since coffee will make you more alert and energized, you might end up unable to sleep soundly at night. Caffeine inhibits the activity of Adenosine, a neurotransmitter in the brain that acts as a natural tranquilizer.
Since caffeine alters this chemical, you may find it hard to fall asleep or if you do, you might wake up a couple of times at night. Lack of sleep can take a toll on your brain activity. You can become drowsy, moody, irritable and others. Lack of sleep may also lead to serious health problems such as cardiovascular diseases.
6. Increased Blood Pressure
One of the notable effects of coffee on the body is an increase in the blood pressure. Hypertension is a trigger of various serious conditions such as heart attack, brain aneurysm, and stroke. If you have a withstanding diagnosis of hypertension, it is better to stay away from coffee or at least, ask your doctor on how many servings you are allowed to consume.
7. Liver Damage
Coffee, when consumed in moderation, can help the liver detoxify the body. However, excessive amounts of coffee may have an opposite effect and may alter the function of the liver. Eventually, drinking too much coffee in long periods may lead to liver damage.
8. Ruptured Brain Aneurysm
One of the fatal conditions dreaded today is a ruptured brain aneurysm, which can eventually lead to a stroke. When a person has an aneurysm, drinking too much coffee may cause a sudden increase in blood pressure in the blood vessels. When this happens, it may lead to the rupture of the weakened part of the arterial wall, leading to a massive brain hemorrhage or internal bleeding in the brain. A ruptured brain aneurysm is a fatal condition that needs immediate medical attention.
9. Cardiac Arrest
Just like a ruptured brain aneurysm, increased blood pressure from high caffeine intake may have dangerous effects on the cardiovascular system, particularly the heart. Drinking too much coffee may over stimulate the cardiovascular system, leading to a cardiac arrest in people with weak hearts. Cardiac arrest is a fatal condition that needs urgent care.
Individuals with caffeine sensitivities may suffer a fatal attack from caffeine overdose. However, this may not happen when drinking regular coffee because the lethal dose of caffeine may be hard to reach. Caffeine pills, however, is a known culprit of many deaths tied to caffeine overdose and hypersensitivity.
Are you a coffee lover? Make sure you know how much of coffee is recommended for you.