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Does Caffeine Affect Blood Pressure

How To Reduce The Effects Of Caffeine On Blood Pressure Without Drinking Less Coffee

Effect of caffeine on blood pressure

If you drink a lot of coffee and have high blood pressure then its likely youre going to need to drink less coffee. But there are other things you can do to try to reduce the effect of caffeine in blood pressure.

This is because the effect of caffeine intake may be exacerbated by other substances or activities which also increase your blood pressure. So:

Avoid caffeine before doing exercise or any highly energetic activity hard labour, workouts, runs, brisk walks. These already raise your blood pressure, and the extra effect of caffeine can mean your heart has to work too hard. Stay away from caffeine for at least an hour before getting into it drink water instead.

Dont smoke and drink coffee tobacco also raises blood pressure by constricting your blood vessels, so coffee and a cigarette arent such a perfect combination for your blood pressure!

Caffeine As A Stimulant

Caffeine is considered as a stimulant because it can increase the activity of your central nervous system that keeps you awake, alert and focus. But this increased activity could also trigger your blood vessels to constriction. With this, your blood pressure will increase and alter the blood supply of the heart. Expert says that this is the most dangerous effects of strong stimulant like cocaine and methamphetamine.

However, caffeine is a very mild stimulant and stays quickly in your body and it is a self-limiting stimulant as it acts on the kidneys increasing its excretion rate.

What Are The Negative Side Effects

Caffeine may increase blood pressure, body temperature, blood flow to the skin & extremities, blood sugar levels, stomach acid secretion and production of urine . People may experience dizziness, hypoglycemia, fruit-like breath odor, troubled breathing, muscle tremors, nausea, diarrhea, increased urine, ketones in urine, drowsiness, thirst, anxiety, confusion, irritability, insomnia, changes in appetite, dry mouth, blurred vision, jitters and cold sweats.

Too much caffeine may lead to sleep deprivation and a tendency to disregard the normal warning signals that the body is tired and needs rest. Caffeine does not replenish energy or prevent emotional fatigue food and sleep are the only remedies for these. When normal sleeping patterns are continually disrupted, mood depression may occur. Too much caffeine may also lead to anxiety-related feelings such as excessive nervousness, sweating, and tremors.

If you want to avoid some of the unintended side effects of caffeinated beverages , switching to decaffeinated drinks may help.

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Indirect Effects Of Caffeine On Blood Pressure

Caffeine not only increases blood pressure directly but also contributes to indirect effects of caffeine on blood pressure. For example, caffeine increases the level of stress experienced physically and mentally. And of course it has long been known that stress contributes to high blood pressure

Caffeine and stress and high blood pressure

Research conducted at Duke University in the US, showed that caffeine increased the levels of stress hormones in the body and amplified peoples perceptions of stress, as well as increasing heart rate and blood pressure.

Heres how the experiment worked. Habitual coffee drinkers had their response to caffeine measured on two randomly chosen days. On one of these days they were given two capsules containing 250mg of caffeine in the morning and at lunchtime the equivalent of about four cups of coffee in total. On another day they were given identical placebo capsules at the same times so that they didnt know which was which.

The days when they were given the caffeine capsules, the participants had significantly higher systolic and diastolic blood pressure levels throughout the day and night, and also higher adrenaline levels .

These physiological effects were highest at the points in the day when the participants reported feeling the most psychologically stressed.

In other words, according to Dr James D. Lane, the research professor leading the study,

Caffeine, stress and high blood pressure what to do about it?

How Does Caffeine Effect Your Blood Pressure

Caffeine &  Hypertension  Caffeine Drinks Raise Blood Pressure

Are you one of many people who cant function without having their morning coffee first? If so, there are a few effects that caffeine can have on hypertension. The java jolt of a caffeine fix may cause a jump in blood pressure a particular problem in people who already have high blood pressure.

Caffeine can cause a short, but dramatic increase in your blood pressure, even if you dont have high blood pressure. It is not clear what causes this spike in blood pressure. Some researchers believe that caffeine could block a hormone that helps keep your arteries wide enough for steady blood flow.

Some people who constantly drink caffeinated beverages have a higher average blood pressure than those who dont drink any. Others who regularly drink caffeinated beverages develop a tolerance to caffeine. As a result, caffeine doesnt have a longterm effect on their blood pressure. Research has shown that caffeine has a stronger blood pressure increasing effect in men who are older than 70 or who are overweight.

To see if caffeine might be raising your blood pressure, check your blood pressure within 30 to 120 minutes of drinking a cup of coffee or another caffeinated beverage. If your blood pressure increases by five to 10 points, you may be sensitive to the blood pressure raising effects of caffeine. If you plan to cut back on caffeine, eliminate it slowly over several days to avoid withdrawal headaches.

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The Safety Of Caffeine Consumption

Coffee is generally considered safe for consumption. This is because the effects on BP tend to last under 4 hours, and there arent any studies that prove that there are any long-term side effects either. However, its advised that people who have existing heart issues, hypertension issues, or are pregnant or are drinking avoid its use. Also, if someone feels like they have consumed far too much of it or is experiencing uncomfortable symptoms, its best to contact a physician immediately and get the necessary help as soon as possible.

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Caffeines Effect On Blood Pressure

Disclaimer: Results are not guaranteed*** and may vary from person to person***.

Americans love coffee. About 80% of Americans drink coffee every day, and the caffeine within it does affect blood pressure. Thankfully these effects arent necessarily harmful, but there is a definite link between coffee, caffeine, and blood pressure.

The average 12-ounce cup of coffee has around 100 milligrams of caffeine, generally speaking, though there are variations when it comes to brand, roast, etc. Within 30 minutes to two hours, youll experience the strongest stimulant effects of caffeine, which can include an accelerated heart rate and a higher than normal blood pressure.

But dont let this worry you. The impacts of caffeine are acute, meaning they wont lead to chronic high blood pressure for the majority of the population. That said, people with hypertension should definitely monitor their intake to avoid increased risk of a heart attack. As far as overall heart health goes, caffeine poses no long-term threat to blood pressure in people with normal, or even slightly high, blood pressure.

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Other Risks Of Coffee And Caffeine

So while it appears there is little risk for high blood pressure among regular coffee drinkers, the question occurs: Are there other risk factors for health in consuming coffee and/or caffeine?

Coffee can cause:

  • Difficulty falling asleep or outright insomnia
  • Anxiety and nervousness
  • Tremors or jitters
  • An increased heart rate

And for those who consume a lot of caffeine, it may cause dizziness or headaches and excessive urination and dehydration.

What To Eat To Lower Your Blood Pressure

Caffeine and Your Blood Pressure

Rolled oats

A review with five research trials included tested the impact of oats on systolic blood pressure and diastolic blood pressure in about 400 healthy adults.

The researchers found that systolic blood pressure was 2.7 mmHg lower and diastolic blood pressure was 1.5 mmHg lower when participants ate around 60 grams of rolled oats or 25 grams of oat bran per day.

This quantity of oats or oat bran contains around four grams of a type of fibre called beta-glucan.

For each extra one gram of total daily fibre, there was an extra 0.11 mmHg reduction in diastolic blood pressure.

Recommended minimum daily adult fibre intakes are 30 grams for men and 25 grams for women.

While some of fibres effect is due to weight loss, soluble fibres produce bioactive products when theyre fermented in the large bowel. These work directly to lower blood pressure.

To improve your blood pressure, eat rolled oats or oat bran for breakfast, add to meat patties, or mix with breadcrumbs in recipes that call for crumbing.

Beetroot

Beetroot is extremely rich in a compound called inorganic nitrate. During digestion, this gets converted into nitric oxide, which causes arteries to dilate. This directly lowers the pressure in them.

A review of 16 trials of mostly healthy young men found drinking beetroot juice was associated with a 4.4 mmHg reduction in systolic blood pressure. But it found no change in diastolic blood pressure.

Vitamin C

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What Can I Do If Im Concerned About Caffeine And High Blood Pressure

If you are at all concerned about how your caffeine habit may be affecting your heart, here are a few things you can do to help ease your mind:

To sum it up: In most cases, a cup or two of your favorite caffeinated beverage in the morning wont cause any harm. Unless your doctor told you to specifically avoid it, its not something you should lose sleep over. The high blood pressure that comes right after drinking caffeine is temporary and wont make you any more likely to develop hypertension later in life.

Now, if youll excuse me, I need to finish my large, iced, French vanilla coffee.

Negative Effects Of Caffeine

Caffeine can have a disruptive effect on your sleep. The most obvious effect of the stimulant is that it can make it hard for you to fall asleep. One study also found that caffeine can delay the timing of your body clock. These effects will reduce your total sleep time. Caffeine also can reduce the amount of deep sleep that you enjoy.

The effects of caffeine can occur even when you consume it earlier in the afternoon or evening. One study found that consuming caffeine 6 hours before bedtime reduced total sleep time by 1 hour. These effects also can be stronger in older adults. It takes their bodies a longer time to process caffeine. Regularly consuming high doses of caffeine may cause complications during pregnancy.

At high doses, caffeine can produce these common side effects:

  • Diarrhea
  • Increased breathing rate
  • Muscle tremors

Withdrawal symptoms can occur when you stop taking caffeine after using it regularly for a long time. These symptoms include:

  • Headaches
  • Low energy levels
  • Bad moods

The FDA is collecting reports of adverse events that have occurred in people who took products marketed as energy drinks or energy shots. The FDA cautions consumers that products marketed as energy shots or energy drinks are not alternatives to sleep.

Caffeine powder is highly potent, and a safe serving size is extremely small. It is nearly impossible to measure caffeine powder accurately in the home. As a result the risk of an accidental, lethal overdose is high.

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How Much Caffeine Should I Have

Many sources recommend limiting your caffeine intake to 200mg caffeine per day. This is roughly the equivalent of two 12 ounce cups of brewed coffee per day.

However, there are other factors to consider when figuring out what amount will suit you:

Personal Physiology

In general, the smaller and lighter you are, the more caffeine is likely to affect you. So you youll probably need to stick to a lower daily caffeine limit than 200mg.

At the other end of the scale, if you are overweight, caffeine is likely to have a greater effect on your blood pressure. So you will also need to keep to a lower daily caffeine intake.

Age

Also, the older you get the more your blood pressure is likely to react to caffeine. This is especially the case once youre over 70 or so.

Find out for yourself how caffeine affects your blood pressure

To get a rough idea how much caffeine may affect your blood pressure, check your blood pressure.

Do a blood pressure reading before drinking caffeine, then 30-60 minutes after drinking caffeine. If its 5-10 points higher, then you are likely to be sensitive to it.

If you dont yet have a blood pressure monitor of your own then its a good idea to get one. Read more about that in our article here: do I need a blood pressure monitor?

But what if I have a good tolerance for caffeine?

So, however little you feel it affects you, better to be safe than sorry and cut down the caffeine.

What To Avoid To Lower Your Blood Pressure

Low Blood Pressure &  Caffeine

Salt

Salt or sodium chloride has been used to preserve foods and as a flavour enhancer for centuries.

Adults need between 1.2 to 2.4g of salt each day , which is equivalent to 460 to 920mg of sodium.

But in Australia seven out of ten men and three in ten women eat way more than that and much more than the upper recommended limit of 5.9 grams of salt or 2,300 mg of sodium per day.

If you add salt to food yourself this pushes your sodium intake even higher.

A review of studies involving 3,230 people showed that reducing salt intakes by 4.4 grams a day could reduce systolic blood pressure by about 4.2 mmHg and diastolic by 2.1 mmHg.

In those who had high blood pressure there were even bigger reductions of 5.4 mmHg and 2.8 mmHg .

Avoid foods high in sodium. Dont add salt and try to choose lower-salt versions of processed foods.

Alcohol

Consuming one or more alcoholic drink a day is associated with systolic blood pressure that is about 2.7 mmHg and diastolic blood pressure 1.4 mmHg higher than non-drinkers.

Interestingly, when you first drink an alcoholic beverage, blood pressure goes down, only to rise later.

A rise in blood pressure after drinking alcohol is more likely to happen when youre awake, rather during sleep.

The bad news is that larger amounts of alcohol increase your risk of high blood pressure, especially in men, but also to a lesser extent in women.

Liquorice

High blood pressure due to eating black liquorice is rare, but case reports have occurred.

Caffeine

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How Does Caffeine Affect My Blood Pressure

While so many of usrely heavily on our caffeine to make it through the daycaffeine has much moreof an impact on our health and our body than many of us realize. While the substancecan give you that nice boost of energy that you need to get through a slowafternoon or to wake up first thing in the morning, experts are now telling usthat caffeine can actually impact our blood pressure as well.

A dose of caffeineis actually able to cause a short, but notable, spike in blood pressureeven amongthose who dont initially have high blood pressure. At this time, scientistsare still not entirely sure what causes this spike in blood pressure, but it isimportant that all people, whether they have had a history with high bloodpressure or notunderstand the impact that caffeine can have on their bloodpressure.

Here are a few moreimportant takeaways from this study:

  • Some experts believe that caffeine may be blocking a hormone in the body that helps to keep the arteries widewhich is why caffeine can cause blood pressure to go up.
  • Some studies indicate that caffeine causes the adrenal glands to release more adrenaline, which can cause the blood pressure to increase.
  • Some people who drink coffee or other caffeinated beverages on a regular basis, tend to have higher average blood pressure than those who do not drink any caffeinethose with a tolerance may not be impacted as much with spikes in blood pressure.
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Some Reports Say Theres No Direct Link Between Caffeine And Blood Pressure

According to Mayo Clinic:

Caffeine can cause a short, but dramatic increase in your blood pressure, even if you don’t have high blood pressure. It’s unclear what causes this spike in blood pressure. Some researchers believe that caffeine could block a hormone that helps keep your arteries widened. Others think that caffeine causes your adrenal glands to release more adrenaline, which causes your blood pressure to increase.

Recent studies, however, have repeatedly reported that caffeine doesnt necessarily lead to an increased blood pressure, nor does it up the risk for cardiovascular diseases like high blood pressure, heart disease and cardiac arrest.

Verywellhealth.com also states a well-known study stating that theres no direct link between caffeine and a rise in blood pressure:

One very well-known study examined more than 85,000 women over a ten-year period and found that there was no increased risk of these diseases, even in women who drank more than six cups of coffee per day.

The Joint National Committee on Hypertension likewise reports that theres indeed no evidence that caffeine leads to high blood pressure.

And heres another silver lining:

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Effects Of Caffeine On Your Health

With 80% of Americans drinking coffee every day, and even more getting it from various other sources, caffeine is not a major threat to your health or blood pressure, unless youre hypertensive. Of course, there are ways that coffee or caffeine can become dangerous for your heart. Avoid putting in sugars, creamers, and other calorie-rich substances, and try to keep your consumption to four cups a day or less. Your tolerance will determine how much caffeine you can handle, but typically four cups is a safe limit.

Caffeine is a natural stimulant and can change how you think and feel. It causes acute changes by stimulating your central nervous system, typically leading to improved focus, alertness, and awareness.

Much like any substance, natural or not, there are some unwanted side effects that can occur depending on dosage, tolerance, and timing. These include:

  • Jitters or shakes
  • Difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep
  • Increased heart rate

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