More than 75% of America consumes coffee. This stimulant affects people in different ways. Does coffee make you yawn?
Yes. The caffeine in coffee makes you alert by interfering with the chemicals that regulate the sleep-wake cycle in the brain. As soon as the body metabolizes this stimulant, it can make you feel sleepy, and you may start yawning. Some coffee lovers assume that they must be sick when they start yawning and feeling sleepy after drinking coffee.
I have been drinking coffee for most of my adult life. I took a break from it when I realized that it was making me sleepy. After research, I created this post to inform you how coffee affects the body. You will also discover how to maximize the benefits of this beverage.
Why does coffee make you tired?
Adenosine levels, caffeine tolerance, sleep debt, dehydration, blood sugar changes, genetics, caffeine metabolism, stress, and presence of mold in coffee. We will discuss each of these separately to give you a better understanding.
- Adenosine levels
The central nervous system naturally produces a chemical known as adenosine which regulates the sleep-wake cycle in the body. The levels of adenosine increase when you are awake and decrease when you go to sleep. These molecules bind with certain brain receptors to slow down brain activity as you prepare to go to sleep.
Every time you consume coffee, the body tends to absorb the caffeine in the drink. It first gets absorbed by the small intestines and stomach and then gets redistributed to the rest of the body parts through your bloodstream.
When the caffeine gets to the brain, it sticks to the adenosine receptors. Caffeine tends to block this chemical’s effects and can make you feel more alert. It prevents the molecule from exerting sleep.
The body takes only a few minutes to absorb most of the caffeine. As soon as the body has fully metabolized it, its effects wear off. When this happens, the body can increase its sensitivity to adenosine. This can make you feel more tired and sleepy.
- Caffeine tolerance
A single cup of coffee contains between 80 and 100 mg of caffeine. Though the caffeine in this beverage makes some people feel more alert, it may not always give you the outcome that you want when you build a tolerance to caffeine.
It is easy to build caffeine tolerance if you take lots of coffee cups in a day. Since this stimulant blocks adenosine receptors, the body may start producing lots of adenosine receptors to counteract the effects of regular caffeine consumption.
If you develop caffeine tolerance and your body begins producing more adenosine receptors, you may start feeling tired after taking coffee rather than feeling more alert. The more tolerance you build up for caffeine, the less of an effect it can have on your energy levels, blood pressure, and heart rate.
Coffee works just like substances such as alcohol in that taking too much of it can lead to tolerance. You may even start experiencing caffeine withdrawal if you have been taking too much coffee, then stop all of a sudden.
- Sleep debt
Research shows that a high number of the American population is sleep deprived. If your body is not getting at least 7 hours of sleep every day and you love drinking coffee, it can make you feel more tired. Lack of getting enough sleep creates sleep debt which not only affects your physical but also mental health.
If you are sleep-deprived, caffeine can mask how tired you feel temporarily. The problem with some coffee lovers is that they drink more coffee whenever they feel tired rather than sleeping. This can make one feel more tired.
If you drink three cups of coffee daily, you are likely to visit the toilet frequently. Coffee is famous for its diuretic effects, and if you don’t take enough water to replace what you lose through frequent urination, you may experience dehydration. Caffeine tends to increase the flow of blood to the kidneys and stimulates the bladder muscles that contract and expel urine.
The dehydration from coffee intake can make you feel more tired and cause a dry mouth. This can get worse when you drink coffee in the evening since you may spend most of your time urinating rather than sleeping. It can leave you feeling more tired the following day. Dehydration not only causes fatigue, but can also lead to anxiety and negatively affect cognitive performance.
- Blood sugar changes
When you have high or low blood sugar levels, you may feel more tired after consuming coffee sweetened with syrup or honey. This drink can lead to insulin resistance and negatively affect your body’s capability to tolerate glucose.
It can increase sensitivity to carbs and sugar in the beverage, causing a sudden rise in blood sugar. Insulin can also lead to a drop in your blood glucose which can, in turn, lead to a lack of sufficient energy in the body, making you feel tired.
Genetics also plays a role in how different people respond to this stimulant. People with specific genes are quite sensitive to the adverse effects of caffeine. If taking coffee normally interferes with your sleep, you may experience tiredness from this the following day.
- Presence of mold in the coffee
Mold contamination in coffee can also cause fatigue in many people. Coffee beans are susceptible to mold, which produces compounds like mycotoxins. These are toxic compounds associated with chronic fatigue.
- Caffeine metabolism
People metabolize caffeine at different rates. If your body metabolizes this stimulant slowly, effects such as alertness may take some time to kick in. On the other hand, the faster your body metabolizes caffeine, the faster it can wear off, making you feel tired or sleepy soon.
Different factors affect the body’s ability to metabolize caffeine. While liver disease and pregnancy can slow down this metabolism, cigarette smoking can speed it up. Research shows that caffeine can stay in a pregnant woman’s body for up to 16 hours.
The body releases stress hormones such as cortisol when one is anxious. This hormone can negatively affect your blood pressure and heart rate. Whenever you take coffee, it makes the body produce more of the stress hormone. When the stimulant wears off from the body, you may start feeling tired.
What are the side effects of coffee?
Apart from causing tiredness and sleepiness, coffee also has other side effects. Some of them include jitteriness, anxiety, increased blood pressure, dizziness, stomach pain, nausea, and headache. You should avoid taking this drink in large amounts since some of its effects may be severe such as chest pain and irregular heartbeat.
How can I maximize the benefits of coffee?
Though coffee can have both positive and negative effects, you can maximize its benefits by controlling your caffeine intake, getting enough sleep, avoiding sugar in the drink, staying hydrated, and trying decaf. Here is more!
Watch your caffeine intake
According to the FDA, you should not take more than 400 mg of coffee daily. If you have been experiencing tiredness from taking this drink, start reducing your coffee intake. You should also be keen on the timing. Avoid taking this beverage close to bedtime since it can disrupt your sleep.
Cut back on sugar
You can minimize fatigue by drinking coffee without sugary creams or syrups. If you often take your coffee with sugary snacks, avoid this, especially if you have diabetes, since it may be the cause of your fatigue.
Since taking lots of coffee can easily cause dehydration, taking lots of water can prevent this and make you feel less tired. Try to consume 8 ounces every two hours. You can also counteract dehydration by eating lots of vegetables and fruits.
Get adequate sleep
If you don’t rest for at least 7 hours each night and often feel tired after drinking coffee, you should prioritize sleep. Assess the quality of your sleep and create a more peaceful sleep environment.
Consider taking decaf, especially in the afternoon.
Do you often start yawning in the afternoon after drinking coffee? If yes, you can maximize the benefits of coffee by switching to decaf, especially after lunch. Decaf is a better option since it has only a fraction of the caffeine in regular coffee.
Since caffeine can double the level of stress hormones in the body, you should look for ways to avoid stress. You can, for instance, try meditation, physical exercise, or journaling.
Is coffee a stimulant?
Yes. This is a stimulant that speeds up the messaging traveling between the body and the brain.
Can coffee cause anxiety?
Yes. Taking this substance, especially in high doses, can cause anxiety.
How long does it take caffeine to wear off?
Caffeine can take between 4 and 6 hours to wear off. Within this period, most of the caffeine you consume is still in the body.
Kai Jordan worked as a Certified Nutrition Specialist and now a food critic whose main objective is to provide consumers with as much information as they need to make the right choices concerning foods and drinks. Jordan is passionate about helping the public reach their health-related goals but also keen on reviewing foods and drinks offered by some of the famous restaurants the likes of Starbucks.
Kai has therefore created well-researched and comprehensive excerpts regarding the services and products offered by the giant restaurant chain. And which can be retrieved from Starbmag.com, apart from talking writing, and dealing with food Kai loves also to Kayak. You can read more about me on the about us page.