For many people, the morning isn’t complete without a warm cup of coffee. Tea can be comforting and necessary in certain circumstance, but it doesn’t compare to the dark, divine liquid. Coffee is a popular beverage that’s beloved for the boost in energy that it provides. While people know the side effects of too much coffee, what about the harmful effects that occur after drinking one cup?
Coffee, by its very nature, is acidic. On the pH scale, coffee registers in the range of 4.5 to 5.5. In fact, the acids in coffee provide the rich and robust flavors. Under the right circumstances, the acidity can lead to feelings of nausea, acid reflux, and gastrointestinal discomfort. Additionally, caffeine is a stimulant that encourages the digestive system to work faster than normal. This also increases the production of more stomach acid than is necessary. By stimulating the stomach, especially when it’s empty, you can easily experience nausea.
Whether you believe it or not, coffee is one of the primary causes of acid reflux and heartburn. Caffeine stimulates the release of gastrin and the secretion of gastric acid. This is most common when you drink coffee in the morning on an empty stomach. Upon entering the stomach, the coffee induces abdominal distress and creates the feeling of nausea. The acids in coffee can also make you feel dizzy, and irritation of the stomach lining can increase feelings of nausea. The best way to avoid these feelings is by drinking water in the morning. Follow that tall glass of H2O with a nutritious breakfast to reduce the chance of feeling nauseous from coffee.
You Take Certain Medications
Disclaimers to numerous medications state that nausea is a common side effect. It’s also possible for coffee to induce that effect when you take medication along with it. Antibacterial drugs (like Cipro), antidepressants (like MAOIs), and asthma medications (like theophylline and albuterol) have negative interactions with the caffeine in coffee. The caffeine-medication interaction regularly causes nausea, according to registered dietitians. If you do take medication, be sure to check the label to ensure that it doesn’t have any food interactions.
You Have Acid Reflux
As mentioned earlier, the acidic pH of coffee means that it can trigger acid reflux. The stomach is an acidic environment, and increasing the acidity can cause an array of gastrointestinal troubles. The acids in coffee can cause acid reflux, heartburn, and bloating, according to many dietitians. These symptoms occur because stomach acid backs up in the esophagus as a result of a relaxed gastroesophageal sphincter, which is the opening at the bottom of the esophagus where food empties into the stomach. If you have acid reflux, be mindful of this information when you drink your morning cup of joe.
In order to curb the potential nauseating effects of coffee, there are healthy steps you can take. Follow the steps below and you should be able to avoid coffee-induced nausea.
Drink Low-Acid Coffee
Dark roasts, decaf coffee, espresso, and cold brew all fall under the umbrella of low-acid coffee. These coffee varieties are much gentler on the stomach and help you avoid the nauseous feeling you dread.
Drink Coffee With Food
Food is the buffer your stomach needs for your morning coffee. It has the same effect on medication, helping to reduce nausea. Avoid drinking coffee on an empty stomach, especially if you’re prone to upset stomach or acid reflux. Instead, drink your coffee with a meal because the calcium in food works to neutralize both the acidity of coffee and stomach acid.