A Cup of Coffee
With so many cafes sprouting up all
over India, Indians are suddenly consuming more coffee than they used to.
Is this a healthy trend?
What is caffeine?
is essentially a central nervous system stimulant, and is a mildly addictive
drug. It causes your body to release adrenaline, which in turn causes pupils
to dilate. Adrenaline further increases your heartbeat for a few minutes,
which is not a harmful thing by itself. The liver releases sugar into the
bloodstream and you feel energized. Caffeine is a mildly addictive drug.
Can I drink coffee when I am pregnant?
Yes you can. There is no need to
stop drinking coffee when pregnant. A moderate intake (around 2 -3 cups
a day) is perfectly harmless. (However, presuming that you add 2 spoons
of sugar in your coffee, you are consuming around 6 spoons of sugar with
3 cups of coffee! Needless to say, this will cause a greater weight gain
during pregnancy!) Research findings as to whether more than 3 cups of
coffee in a day is harmful, is inconsistent. As a result, different doctors
make different suggestions. We would encourage you to play safe when pregnant,
and don't have more than 2 cups of coffee in a day. After all, caffeine
is not present in coffee alone, and you never know in what other forms
you are consuming it.
Does tea contain caffeine?
Yes, tea does contain caffeine. A
cup of moderately brewed tea contains around 30% less caffeine than a cup
of coffee does.
What soft drinks contain caffeine?
Soft drinks like Coke and Pepsi contain
almost as much caffeine as does a cup of coffee. High energy drinks like
Mountain Dew contain more caffeine than Coke. So if you must have two cups
of coffee in a day, skip the soft drink and have a juice instead. Soft
drinks like Citra and 7 Up contain no caffeine at all.
What effect will this have on my foetus?
When you consume a cup of coffee,
your foetus feels a brief bout of stress, while your heartbeat and metabolism
increase. This is equivalent to you running a short distance to catch that
bus, and is not harmful for the foetus. However it is important to avoid
drinking too much coffee. In addition, caffeine is a diuretic, which means
that it prompts your body to lose water through urination. Thus, for every
cup of coffee you consume, drink 2 additional glasses of water. If you
drink coffee at night, you may have trouble falling asleep.
Can I have coffee immediately after a meal?
Coffee inhibits the body's ability
to absorb certain minerals like iron and calcium, so avoid consuming coffee
within one hour of a meal. It's best to have coffee in the evenings, along
with a light snack.
How much caffeine am I taking in, in a day?
A moderate caffeine intake is defined as around 300 mg of caffeine in a day. Here's how you can find out whether your caffeine intake is moderate or excessive.
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