Category Archives: Caffeine

5 reasons to drink coffee before your workout


A recent research published in the International Journal of Sport and Exercise Metabolism suggests that caffeine consumption before exercise might increase weight loss. Previous findings highlighted other effects including increase in blood flow, decrease in pain, muscle preservation, memory enhancement and increase in muscle fuel.  Have you or your patients experimented with coffee around the time of your exercise?  What are your thoughts?

For additional information, please see CNN.

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Coffee consumption reduces mortality risk from liver cirrhosis

coffee blogRecent research published in Hepatology has shown that consuming at least 2 cups of coffee daily may reduce the risk of death from cirrhosis, estimated in 2004 WHO report to be 1.3% of total deaths worldwide. The investigators examined the mortality from cirrhosis from consuming coffee, alcohol, tea, and soda. They found that drinking at least 20 g of alchol daily increased risk of cirrhosis mortality while drinking at least 2 cups of coffee was associated with 66% reduction of death from non-viral hepatitis related cirrhosis. Considering its positive and negative effects, what are your current patient recommendations related to coffee consumption?


For additional information, please click Science Daily

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Restaurant Calorie Counting

One of the requirements as listed by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (2010) asks restaurant chains with 20 or more locations across the U.S. to list calorie information on menus. Major cities across the U.S. have already fulfilled these requirements since 2009. Interestingly, Reuters Health reported today about a cross-sectional analysis (Journal of Public Health) indicating that only 1 in 3 diners actually make use of this information. This study was conducted in just over 4000 adults in the U.S. who ate out at restaurants either multiple times a week or on a monthly basis. Among the diners, women were reported to have higher rates of reading calorie information but no significant changes have been reported in terms of consumers purchasing more lower-calorie options. Seeing as obesity is a large contributor to chronic diseases, controlling portion sizes especially when eating out is quite important. Do you think that calorie-counting makes a big difference in weight management? How you counsel your patients on healthy eating as well as watching their caloric intake?

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Energy Drinks Do Alter Heart Function

A study looking at the effect on heart contractility from energy drink consumption was released today via the annual meeting of the Radiological Society of North America (RSNA). Teenagers and young adults have been warned about the risks of consuming drinks high in caffeine and taurine content related to the increased number of ER visits resulting from rapid rises in blood pressure, seizures and even death. Investigators from the University of Bonn, Germany have been studying the effect of the content of these drinks on 18 volunteers aged around 27 years. MRI reports done 1 hour post consumption of drinks high in caffeine and taurine content revealed significant strain on the heart’s ability to contract from the left ventricle.  It is well known that impairment of the heart’s ability to contract appropriately could lead to arrhythmias and even seizures. More studies are needed to determine the long-term impact that energy drinks have on the heart but these short-term findings are nothing short of concerning. Do you counsel your patients to watch their caffeine intake and to avoid unnecessary consumption of energy drinks? Do you think we need tighter regulations on energy drinks?

For more information, click here


Energy Drinks for Breakfast Popular Among Students

According to a poll conducted by Make Mine Milk campaign in the UK, researchers found that teenagers were consuming unhealthy foods for breakfast such as energy drinks. The poll, including responses from 2,000 teenagers between ages 12-18, observed some concerning breakfast habits. Teens would either skip breakfast or choose food items very high in fat, sugar, and caffeine– energy drinks being a popular choice. A frequently consumed “shot style” energy drink contains 175mg of caffeine! Not only does eating in this manner become hazardous to their health, it also negatively impacts their behavior and academic performance as well.

Have you found any other alarming foods that are frequently eaten for breakfast? What healthy breakfast options do you normally recommend for students?

Please check BBC NEWS for more details.

Soft drinks consumption is associated with behavior problems in 5-year-olds.

149275_of404-mSoft drink consumption has been in the news a number of times during this summer.  Here is another prospective birth cohort study that was recently published in the Journal of Pediatrics.  Researchers followed 3,000 5-year-old children and their mothers from 20 large U.S. cities. Every two months, each mother had to report their child’s soft drink consumption then complete a checklist to assess their child’s behavior. Scientists discovered that children who consumed soft drinks had increased aggression, attention problems and withdrawal behavior as opposed to those who did not. Furthermore, children who drank 4 or more soft drinks per day were more than twice as likely to destroy things belonging to others, get into fights, and physically attack people. Does your library of evidence related to soft drink consumption help you to persuade your patients and their parents to eliminate them from the diet? What practical tips do you offer in substituting soft drinks for something more healthful?

For more information, please click here.

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Coffee prevents early events in tamoxifen-treated breast cancer patients and modulates hormone receptor status

A Swedish study published in the journal Cancer Causes and Control suggested that the risk of breast cancer recurring in 600 patients taking tamoxifen was reduced with coffee consumption. Researchers evaluated hormone receptor status and also found modifications related to coffee consumption. What are your thoughts about this study – would the results encourage you to recommend coffee consumption to your breast cancer patients?

For additional information please refer to Cancer Causes and Control.

Young Adults Are Swapping Soda for Coffee


A new survey from the NPD group which tracks the American publics’ eating and drinking trends, found that young adults (18-24 years old) are in increasing numbers consuming coffee rather than soda to get their energy buzz.  Although coffee has health benefits, it can be disruptive to one’s sleep cycles.  When did you become aware of the negative aspects of soda consumption?  Has your coffee consumption been affecting your sleeping pattern?

For additional information, please visit NPR. “Image courtesy of [creativedoxfoto]/”


FDA investigates the safety of energy drinks

Yesterday, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) began investigating reports of five deaths that may be associated with “Monster” energy drinks. A 12 oz can of the energy drink contains 105 mg of caffeine, while a 12 oz can of Coca-Cola contains 35 mg. Monster Beverage Corporation is being sued by the family of a 14 year old Maryland girl, who died after drinking two cans of the energy drink in a 24 hour period.  How often do you consume energy drinks? What are some safer alternatives to energy drinks?

For more information, please read the article in NY Times.

Coffee consumption inversely linked to aggressive forms of prostate cancer. How do you often counsel patients regarding use of caffeine?

Although evidence suggests that higher coffee consumption has been associated with a reduced risk of aggressive prostate cancer, evidence of the link between coffee and the risk of overall prostate cancer has been inconclusive.  The results of this newly published prospective cohort study support the inverse link between higher coffee consumption and risk of aggressive prostate cancer, but not overall risk.  How often do you counsel patients regarding use of caffeine?

For additional information, please click here.