Although the majority of caffeine users are not adverse to the drug, there are still a good number of them who have issues relating to its effect on the human body. Caffeine has been proven as an effective ingredient in increasing alertness and promoting performance. For this reason alone, most people believe that caffeinated coffee consumption is safe for a short time frame, but after this period has passed, it’s highly recommended that you limit your consumption of the beverage. Caffeine can cause various negative effects on the body ranging from weight gain to the development of ulcers and hiatal hernias.
One of the latest studies that looks at the caffeine health benefits comes from the Alzheimer’s Disease Prevention Research Center at the University of California, Los Angeles. This particular study looked at the possibility that caffeine may help prevent Alzheimer’s in elderly subjects. As you may know, this progressive neurodegenerative disease affects millions of people around the world. In this study, the researchers followed up on previous findings from the Alzheimer’s Disease Treatment Centers of America that found that caffeine decreased the progression of the disease in older subjects. Despite the fact that many people consider coffee their “ace in the morning,” there’s another beverage that may be just as beneficial for you as it is for them. If coffee isn’t your cup of tea, then maybe it should be.
The main group of caffeine health benefits is centered around its ability to increase serotonin activity in the brain. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that has a vast effect on the body. As you may know, when Serotonin activity is high it’s usually positive, but when it’s decreased it can have a wide variety of negative implications. One of the reasons that Serotonin plays such a large role in the brain is because it acts as a natural painkiller.
Another of the caffeine health benefits comes from the way that caffeine helps to increase dopamine levels in the brain. When dopamine levels are increased, it helps to prevent moodiness and other common mental disorders which can be caused by low levels of this chemical in the brain. It’s important to note that doses of caffeine can be very dangerous, especially if they’re taken via the mouth. Research has suggested that very high dosages of caffeine can result in seizures, heart attacks, confusion and even depression.
Although caffeine can have many positive benefits, it’s important to remember that it can be poisonous when it’s not in the proper form. One of the most common ways to consume caffeine is through soft drinks which are typically fortified with caffeine. When caffeine is consumed in this form, it’s often in excess which can raise risks of heart attacks and anxiety. This issue was brought to light in a study conducted by a group of Italian researchers who compared caffeinated and diet cola drinks which led to a significant difference in results. The groups that drank the most caffeine lost more weight, had more anxiety and suffered more side effects than those who drank the less caffeinated drinks.
Other benefits of caffeine aren’t as well known and include possible anti-cancer activity. Caffeine is thought to reduce the risk of colon cancer by reducing the amount of estrogen and thus potentially reducing the risk of breast and ovarian cancer. More research is needed to confirm these findings but the preliminary evidence strongly suggests that caffeine consumption can lower the risk of these types of cancers. However, caffeine consumption is also believed to have negative health benefits due to its ability to increase the levels of inflammatory cytokines which can contribute to cardiovascular disease.