Like most of us, I can admit to a minor coffee addiction, late night planning and a new shop calls for it. But lately I’ve been wondering how much is too much? When I sat down and counted how many cups I was having each day I was a bit concerned.
- A coffee with breakfast for the caffeine wake up call my body desperately needs.
- Another to keep me focused through the morning meeting.
- Auto pilot ordering a cappuccino over lunch.
- An afternoon coffee round to get me through to knock off time.
- Another when organising dinner.
So is it wrong for me to indulge in 5 cups a day?
Coffee culture is thriving and as a result it seems to be constantly under the spotlight. Whether or not it is good for us and how much is good for us are subjects that have been debated by researchers and nutritionists for years. I’ve waded through all the different theories and statistics and here is what I took from it:
We all know that coffee is a wonder drink. And anything that smells and tastes that good bust be good for us, right? Along with red wine and chocolate, coffee has proven health benefits if taken in moderation. Along with the jump-start of alertness you feel after that fist sip there are also supposed links to reduced risk of type 2 diabetes, dementia, heart attack, stroke and liver cancer.
Just like so many of the other things we love, too much of a good thing can be bad for us. An overload of caffeine can cause symptoms such as restlessness, nervousness, excitement, insomnia and nausea. It is also possible to overdose on caffeine which can be seriously detrimental. Too much can have a poisonous effect on the body, but to fatally overdose on coffee alone would take an extreme amount.
Coffee comes in so many forms and sizes. Therefore, you have to take into consideration what kind of coffee you are drinking when it comes to understanding the guidelines. A triple shot espresso is obviously going to be different to hastily chucking a teaspoon of instant into a free mug. I was relieved to discover that the UK Department of Health advises people that up to five single espressos a day is ok – roughly seven cups of instant. Obviously caffeine affects everyone differently and there are always exceptions. So do what is right for your body.
It’s good to know that I’m fine as long as I’m not knocking back 10 espressos a day and I stick to what is sensible.