Caffeine is used for many purposes. In the past athletes have used it to improve their performance. Some people believe caffeine can boost energy and increase endurance. Others think it can raise the metabolic rate, thereby helping to promote weight-loss.
In truth, there are very few health benefits from ingesting caffeine, either in drinks or from supplements. Most of the ideas related to caffeine are complete and utter myth.
Here are 5 of the most common caffeine myths.
Does caffeine give you more energy?
Sometimes considered the best thing to get you through the morning. Caffeine is a mild stimulant. It increases heart rate, giving you a burst of energy, which can help to wake you up and keep you more alert but this is a short term effect that can lead to drinking more coffee.
Caffeine won’t do much to improve your mental performance. The best thing for that is sleep. The combination of sleep and a good breakfast will give you a far better morning boost.
Does caffeine improve endurance?
Studies have shown that caffeine makes the body release hormones that increase endurance, thereby helping you to lose fat, although results have been inconsistent.
Actually, it would be difficult to regard caffeine as a good sports supplement. Caffeine causes your body to lose water more quickly and consequently, it can hinder re-hydration when consumed before or after exercise.
Caffeine is also on the list of controlled drugs set by the IOC (International Olympic Committee). A sensible diet including plenty of carbohydrates and a good training routine is what you require.
Does caffeine promote weight loss?
Some consumers believe caffeine can help with weight loss, due to an increased metabolic rate. Caffeine consumption has little effect on the metabolic rate when it comes to long-term weight loss.
As it is a diuretic, you may get a small amount of weight loss, due to water being removed from the body via urine, but not body fat, which is what you want to lose. It is advisable you avoid any herbal supplements, which claim to enhance weight loss.
Some weight-loss remedies contain high amounts of caffeine and maybe harmful. Weight loss is best achieved with a healthy diet and exercise – there are no short cuts or miracle cures.
It is astonishing how much money people waste their money on diet pills which don’t work. Often they are purchased without knowing what’s inside the capsules or the side effects they may have. Usually they are a concoction of concerning substances which may include anti-depressants and or caffeine.
For best result try a sensible meal plan and combine it with some mild exercise and or walking.
Can caffeine protect against disease?
There’s little evidence to suggest caffeine promotes or protects against cancer or heart disease. Studies have shown some positive effects with skin cancer. Some researchers think coffee (3 cups per day) may help lower the risk of Alzheimer’s.
The evidence is inconclusive and it’s unlikely that using caffeine as a counter measure will have any significant effect on disease prevention. Your best bet is to follow a healthy diet, one full of health-protecting nutrients, such as fibre, vitamins, minerals and phyto-chemicals. Add lots of fruit and veg to your meals and get plenty of regular exercise.
Can caffeine help control asthma?
It’s been suggested that caffeine can be used as a mild bronchodilator and that it’s a natural remedy for asthma.
Caffeine can improve respiration by dilating the airways in the lungs. You could try drinking a strong cup of coffee, to help relieve a mild attack, if no other medications are available, but generally it’s advisable to follow your doctor’s advice for treatment.