Coffee is the vital spark to the American working class. There have been studies that show that 90 percent of Americans are drinking more than 300 milligrams of caffeine a day, which makes it the most popular psychoactive drug by far. Some say they must have it to act in the morning or how they cannot live without it and that it has been a morning ritual since age 10 or 15. Since we are all different depending on our age, size and health conditions, drinking the same amount will build a tolerance for caffeine, meaning it is not doing for you what it first did.
There have been many things written about the benefits of coffee. For example, it contains antioxidants or it helps with different diseases. But there are some drawbacks to coffee/caffeine of which most of us have no idea. We often say we need to drink coffee to give us energy. But for many of us, has it gone further than just energy and turned into a kind of jittery tension that is always on and makes it difficult to relax? Maybe it pushes you to get through the paperwork, but longer-term the health implications of this kind of ongoing stress are significant. Your mood and your digestive system are surprisingly interrelated. Unfortunately, when you drink things that have the high levels of caffeine, in it can negatively affect both your mood and your digestive system.
Caffeine serves as a stimulant in the body and is used in the health care world to treat drowsiness, in the non-drowsy medications. Caffeine is used in over-the-counter items for headaches and migraines to prevent them because you get a headache when you do not have caffeine if you have consumed it over the years. Between the sodas, the prescription and over-the-counter drugs, one ingests a lot of caffeine. A small bottle of 5-hour energy shot has 200 milligrams of caffeine. An 8-ounce cup of coffee has 80-175 milligrams of caffeine depending on how strong. Even decaf coffee has about 3 milligrams of caffeine.
“Drinking coffee on an empty stomach, such as first thing in the morning, stimulates hydrochloric acid production.”  This can be a problem because HCl should only be produced to digest meals. If your body has to make HCl more often in response to regular cups of coffee, it may have difficulty producing enough to deal with a large meal.
Protein digestion, in particular, is affected by a lack of hydrochloric acid in the stomach and protein-based foods can pass into the small intestine before being properly broken down. Many of the compounds in coffee like caffeine and the various acids found in coffee beans can irritate your stomach and the lining of your small intestine.
Some experts go so far as to say almost all disease begins in the gut. Given this, you can see why it’s important to limit anything that interferes with its proper functioning.” 
There are also some perks of drinking coffee or having caffeine, I enjoy a cup in the afternoons after lunch to give me a push through the afternoon, some want that cup of Joe to start the day out right. The benefits of coffee are:
- “Increase your fiber intake
- Protection against cirrhosis of the liver
- Reduces suicide risk and depression
- Reduced heart attack mortality risk” 
Do you consume caffeine? How does it make you feel? Are you “addicted?”
March 22, 2017
Functional Endocrinology of Ohio
Akron: 2800 S. Arlington Road, Akron, Ohio 44312 (330) 644-5488
Cleveland: 6200 Rockside Woods Blvd., Ste. 100, Independence, Ohio 44131 (216) 236-0060
Dr. Keith S. Ungar, Dr. Andrew Kender, Chiropractic Physicians