October 17

The Dangers and Side Effects of Drinking Coffee

Filed under Caffeine and Stimulants by Frederic Patenaude

Dr. Mercola recently wrote an article on why he’s changing his mind on a popular beverage: coffee.

I rarely agree with Dr. Mercola on anything, as I think his advice is delivered with hype and often lacks substance.

But at least I agreed with him on coffee.

Mercola often warned against the regular consumption of coffee, and said it should only be used occasionally as a “drug” (because caffeine is a drug) in certain circumstances when you really need it. He gave the example of traveling across many time zones. One way to beat jet lag is to consume caffeine to stay awake and fit right in the new time zone, instead of falling asleep and messing up your sleep cycles.

But now in a recent article Mercola is changing his mind on coffee.

He now thinks that black dark roast coffee is good for you, and has a number of health benefits. He quotes studies that show that coffee may help with the following diseases:

– Type 2 diabetes
– Parkinson’s disease
– Alzheimer’s disease
– Prostate cancer
– Liver cancer
– Kidney cancer
– Etc.

Now in a moment I will give you what I believe is a more balanced view on coffee. But first, let me be clear that I absolutely LOVE coffee. I totally understand the love affair that the world has with coffee, and other caffeinated beverages, like tea.

But for me coffee has always been a love/hate relationship.

I love caffeine and its immediate effects on my body. However, I also know that I’m very caffeine sensitive and I know the short and long-term effects of caffeine effects on my body.

If I consume coffee one or two days in a row, I will inevitably get headaches as a result. I will also get depressed and lack energy a day or two after I stop coffee.

If I keep drinking coffee and make it a habit (I have done that at times in the past), I experience the following symptoms:

– Irritability
– Clouded thinking in the morning until I have coffee again
– Regular migraine headaches
– Back pain
– Extreme symptoms of depression that would be diagnosed as “clinical depression”

I know that I am more sensitive to caffeine than most people. Therefore, I treat coffee with respect. I don’t underestimate its effects as a drug and I stay away for the most part.

Like I said, I LOVE coffee and caffeine in general. So once in a while, I can’t resist having a cup of tea or coffee.

When I do, I love the immediate effects. But I know there will be some consequences.

I have found that if I don’t consume caffeine more than a couple of times a month (say 2-3) then I can manage with it.

There are times, for example when traveling, when using a little bit of a boost is not a bad idea.

After all, certain circumstances in life are unnatural to begin with, like traveling across multiple time zones in minutes or hours.

But what’s important is that I treat coffee for what it is:

Not a beverage like fruit juice, or an innocent little habit, but like a DRUG.

Just read the Wikipedia page on caffeine to understand why it’s truly a drug and what are its effects on the body ()

Caffeine Blues

One book that I read years ago and talked about many times on my website is “Caffeine Blues.”

To my knowledge, it’s the only comprehensive book that’s ever been published on why coffee is bad for health. (to purchase the book, click here)

On the first page of the book, you can read:

– Caffeine can’t provide energy, only chemical stimulation and induced emergency state that can lead to irritability, mood swings, and panic attacks.
– Caffeine’s ultimate mood effect can be letdown, which can lead to depression and chronic fatigue.
– Caffeine gives the illusion of heightened alertness by dilating pupils, quickening heart rate, and raising blood pressure. In fact, caffeine does not increase overall mental activity.

Caffeine blues lists many of the side-effects of coffee, some that are rarely talked about.

The negative effects of caffeine on the body include:

– Energy swings or periods of fatigue during the day

– Mood swings or periods of depression


- Gastrointestinal distress, cramping, diarrhea

– Constipation and/or dependence on caffeine for bowel movement

– Tension or stiffness in the neck, shoulders, hands, legs or stomach

- Premenstrual syndrome, menstrual irregularity, camps, sore breasts

- Painful/sensitive lumps in breast

- Insomnia

- Anxiety

– Irritability, including inappropriate fits of anger

- Irregular or rapid heartbeat

– Light-headness/dizziness

– Waking up feeling tired

– Generalized pain (back, stomach, muscles)

– High blood pressure

– Ulcers

– Anemia

– Shortness of breath

- Difficulty in concentration

- Ringing in ears
- Coldness in extremities

- Hand tremor
Now, to put things in perspective, not every coffee drinker will experience these symptoms, and for some the symptoms will only occur after a certain level of sustained consumption.

For some people, any consumption of any caffeine will lead to serious health consequences.

For others, like me, the limit is very low, perhaps a few cups of caffeinated beverage per month.

Some other people are sensitive to the high levels of caffeine in coffee, but can drink green tea every day. (Personally if I drink green tea every day I still experience many negative side-effects, including irritability).

Others seem to to process caffeine better and do well with a certain amount of coffee per day, like a cup of espresso.

But everybody has a caffeine “breaking point.”

But here’s what worries me with all those “pro-caffeine” articles: nobody talks about the fact that caffeine is a drug, that people self-medicate with it, and few are aware of the side effects.

Many people live with “clinical depression” that is in fact a consequence of drinking coffee. Nobody ever told them that depression can have physical causes and be as simple as the regular consumption of coffee, when one is very sensitive to caffeine.

I knew a guy who complained to me that he’d been depressed for years and didn’t have the energy to meet the day anymore. He thought his depression was caused by his marriage.

This was about 5-6 years ago. I suggested to him at the time to quit drinking coffee and read “Caffeine Blues.” He did and his depression went away in about 3-4 weeks after drinking coffee, but he told me that he only went back to his “true self” about 60 days after quitting coffee.

If caffeine is a drug, and we know that it is, then it may well have some benefits, like many drugs do.

I’m not questioning this research on how coffee may help with some health problems like diabetes or may help to prevent Alzheimer’s disease.

I have no opinion about those studies because I’m not an expert doing the research.

However, if caffeine is a drug that has same benefits, then it also has side-effects. And some individuals are more likely to develop those side-effects, just like with any other drug.

But nobody likes to talk about the side effects. It’s just not popular to question America’s most popular drug.

I’m not saying that there’s no place for caffeine in the world, and that everybody should quit drinking coffee. But you have to find out how your body can operate at its best, and for many people, that means drinking no coffee or caffeinated beverages at all.

But I want to hear from you. Do you consume any form of caffeine? Do you consider yourself sensitive to caffeine? Did you quit coffee or caffeine?

I’d be curious to hear your story! Let me know in the comment section below…

44 Responses to “The Dangers and Side Effects of Drinking Coffee”

  1. kevin gianni says:

    I LOVE coffee too… unfortunately (or fortunately!) it doesn’t work with me. So I just leave it be these days. Ultimately, you can get some of the “health benefits” that come with coffee from other foods — without the stimulant. 🙂


  2. Frederic Patenaude says:

    I think Kevin that one of these days coffee will be calling your name and you won’t be able to resist! 🙂
    Have you tried raw cacao? (Just kidding…)

  3. Joan says:

    I agree with you! I think these various “studies” are appropriately funded or people are finding excuses to drink the stuff…

  4. peter says:

    Great article! Thanks. I have to get this book.

  5. Sherry A says:

    I really love flavored espresso latte’s but the caffeine is an issue but it also helps me be more alert. So I’ve started making my own espresso at home but with DECAF ESPRESSO. This has really helped me get my coffee and still works with making me feel more alert without the strong negative side effect. So this has been my answer. (since I think decaf still has a very small amount of caffeine, which has been enough to work but not enough to be bad)

  6. Lisa Walpole says:

    i was very interested to read this article as i, too, suffer from sensitivity to coffee, but don’t know anyone else who does.

    i love the taste and the immediate effects it has on me. it makes me feel gooooood – but only for a short while, about 30 mins. after that, everything speeds up a little bit too fast and i start to feel out of control. this is after just one cup of an espresso based small white. i especially love the way it tastes and the feeling it gives me when i have the first one after a period of abstinence – a sure sign to me that it is a drug in my body.

    i have given it up more times than i can remember. i give up because it ultimately makes me feel very bad. after about 4 days of having just one small cup a day, i begin to feel tired, headachey and even sickly. it’s like a build up of caffeine in my system that my body can’t get rid of quickly enough. so then i have to stop drinking it because i feel sick and when i do stop drinking it, i get withdrawal symptoms of feeling even worse until it leaves my body. and yet, and yet… so far, i always go back to it because after i am caffeine-free, i feel good, and then i think, oh, just one cup won’t hurt. but, of course, it does, and it’s never just one cup.

    in this article you call caffeine a drug, which it is, and i know it is, but to hear you say it so definitely and to read your own experience with it makes me realise it a little more clearly. i hope this time i can say goodbye to it for good.

  7. Kathy Johnson says:

    I too love coffee but am sensitive to caffeine on a daily basis. I now make myself a decaf espresso latte as a treat on the weekends, but stick to green tea or herbal teas during the week. I’m finding that a good quality green tea doesn’t seem to give me the same side effects as coffee.

  8. Andrea says:

    Thanks Frederic. I used to be a coffee addict. I just drank it when I felt hungry. I used to drink it till late at night. It never kept me awake. But I surely had headaches, and I assume depression. I stopped drinking coffee several times, like during pregnancy, but then after baby was born I started again. I have stopped now for the last year, and I have not had headaches. I still get depressed some times, but I do not miss the coffee. I only drink herbal teas, but if I eat lots of salads I find that I do not even crave tea.


  9. andrea says:

    I love coffee but I too have discovered I am very sensitive to caffeine. I am also very sensitive to most supplements and chemicals and sugar. The headaches and insomnia and tinnitus are not fun and are not worth it!!! I have tried all the substitutes. Green tea is worse for me than coffee. I can’t stand the coffee stand ins, and I think I am really allergic to chicory and inulin. Luckily I seem to be able to handle decaf coffee okay, especially if I put some lactose free milk in it. So I drink decaf Tassimo coffee with lactaid at home and work, and decaf americanos at Starbucks (where they have lactaid milk). Works for me!!

  10. lola says:

    i love coffee so much but it gives me terrible migraines, insomnia, and anxiety. If I drink it 2 days in a row, I am a mess. I tried drinking decaf but after a week, I start getting migraines. I tried matcha green tea and I get the same migraines. When I stop the coffee, green tea & decaf, I no longer get migraines for months. If I try to have a cup, i know when in a few weeks I will get a migraine. I have found that yerba mate will give me the same insomnia as coffee but no headaches. If I need to have a pick me up it will be yerba mate but I doubt I have coffee again. It’s just too painful.

  11. Frederic Patenaude says:

    I’m exactly like you Lola, although maybe not as sensitive. It’s almost impossible for me to get a migraine (in spite of a big history of migraine headaches in my family and when I was younger) if I have no caffeine. I have not tried Yerba Matte many times so I can’t comment on the difference with coffee when it comes to headaches. I wonder why that’s the case.

  12. Chris says:

    Hehe I got a good laugh out of Dr. Mercola’s write-up on this too. He’s always good for a laugh!

    But the fact that coffee is the #1 antioxidant containing substance in the American diet (due to a severe deficiency in any fresh fruits or vegetables) is pretty scary!

    Personally I’ve found just taking good care of myself provides greater drive, energy, and participation in life than any drug, including coffee, can provide.

  13. Sonya says:

    Hey Fred! Great article 🙂

    I’m pretty much like you – really sensitive to coffee. It gives me mood swings, headaches, migraines, the shakes and neck + back pain. It stiffens my body and gets me thinking 100 miles per hour.

    Thing is, I have a hard time quitting! My body screams NO MORE but I just love it so much… Plus I like it with milk, which my body also dislikes.

    There’s all this hype about organo gold coffee, which contains ganoderma lucidum, a mushroom that is suppose to have amazing healing properties. I started drinking that instead. It is not suppose to have the harsh effect of nomal coffee… but it still affects me!

    I guess when you eat mostly raw, your body becomes really sensitive. I need to quit. I’m trying to quit, but I feel so groggy when I do… Ah. I’ll get there. Ain’t quitting on quitting! Haha. 🙂

  14. Carl says:

    Years ago I used to drink 4-6 cups of coffee a day with no noticeable side effects. When I became vegan and started taking part in some detox programmes I stopped caffeine and went ‘cold turkey’ for a while. Since then I’ve not been able to drink coffee. If I do I get the most terrible symptoms of anxiety. I start to tremor and find it hard to do anything for 3-4hrs when it finally begins to wear off. I never choose to drink caffeine anymore but have occasionally had decaf. After having several decafs but still experiencing the anxiety feelings I feel unable to even trust the vendors to give me what I have asked for. In my opinion, and it is only that, coffee (caffeine) is best avoided.wherever possible.

  15. shannon says:

    Coffee is not only harmful because it is a “drug”… it strips the body of vitamins and important minerals like potassium. It should only be used for cleansing purposes… every now and then… but not every day! I drank too much of it in high school and made myself sick. Now it is like a poison in my body.

  16. Cait says:

    I love coffee too! I don’t especially notice a boost in energy when I drink it, but I have a strong cup every morning and I definitely depend on it emotionally. I just love the taste and the warmth and the idea even!
    Funnily enough, I decided yesterday not to have one to try to wean myself off it and, sure enough, I got a headache that evening and through this morning until I broke and had one. I don’t notice the benefit when I drink it, but I definitely notice the detox when I don’t!
    The reason I decided I’d like to cut back is a kind of shallow one – I read that it can contribute to puffy under eyes, perhaps because it stresses the liver, and mine are far too puffy for a 25 year old. Boohoo! Maybe that’ll change when I’m caffeine free, maybe not, but I’d rather a cup or two a month like you say than unquestioningly drinking it everyday and not feeling like I control my consumption rather than the other way around. Great timing eh? 😀

  17. Christopher says:

    I am very sensitive just like you Fredric, but I have discovered that combining even a healthy raw diet with too little sleep at times still leaves one tired. So I decided to buy some food grade matcha powder since ( though probably not raw, but possibly) I thoght it woudl be the purest form of the “drug” It does work like coffee in keeping awake and found that regulating the amount taken ( in my greeen smooothies) I was able to have more “of that fake energy” But soon anxiety and depression came back, Instead of using that energy to be more productive I often found the caffiene energy helped me find more ways to procrastinate. The famous Russian scientist, Pavlov, called coffee “bad habit glue,” and I have found this to be true. To stay away completely is best. Now what to do with my $100 worth of matcha powder…

  18. Alana says:

    Thank you for the article! I had never loved coffee before I came to Canada, being originally from Eastern Europe, we had other beverages more popular to consume while having nice conversation with friends:)) I found that it is more North American thing – coffee shops everywhere, smell of fresh coffee, constantly working coffee making machines at the offices, people sitting and talking while having coffee, even walking and having coffee! and I don’t even know how I got addicted to it too. I do definitely have all the above mentioned side effects, and try to only allow myself a cup of coffee when it almost inevitable:), may be once a week now.

    One interesting thing I would like to mention. Couple weeks ago I had an appointment with a very good Ayurveda practitioner, one of the best in Vancouver, he is actually supports raw food diet and even promotes it in his clinic. So, when I asked him about coffee, to my surprise, he answered that there in nothing bad in a small cup of coffee in the morning taken with a little bit of butter in it. He said that actually coffee supports our adrenal system by stimulating it a little, if taken in small quantities…

    So well, looks like the rule of having everything in small quantities and moderation wouldn’t hurt. For me the main concern now is to stop being addicted and then… we will see…

  19. Gail says:

    I use to drink up to 8 cups of coffee a day. After getting “really” serious about my health and the things I consume that could harm my body, I quit cold turkey and haven’t had a cup in over 12 years. I loved the taste of coffee, and still could very easily go back to drinking it again. For me, being able to control my desires is far more important than giving into temporary pleasure.
    P.S. I noticed your blog rules “Lets be nice to each other” and struggled with the comment “I rarely agree with Dr. Mercola on anything, as I think his advice is delivered with hype and often lacks substance.” I’m sure this man has given many people food for thought with regards to looking at a healthier way of living. Any one who attempts to do this (including yourself) deserves to be recognized and applauded, whether or not we agree with everything they are saying. If my comments are not posted I will truly understand.

  20. Jean Marie says:

    Thank you for a wonderful article! I used to drink at least 20 ounces of coffee a day and usually the strong stuff, like Starbuck’s dark roasts. I started developing more & more sensitivity in the form of heart palpitations and shortness of breath. The last episode of this was the worst, and I knew I had to go off of caffeine permanently. I am so sensitive, like you Frederic, that I can’t even drink white tea. Fortunately, I did find a coffee substitute that tastes so much like coffee, I still get the flavor without the side effects. I don’t think any of the other commenters noted Teeccino, but I would like to give a plug for this wonderful beverage.

  21. Patty says:

    I have trichotillomania which is made worse by coffee…..I should do a podcast or video on this. raw foods (mostly fruist and greens) and staying away from coffee is the only thing that keeps me free from this dreaded disorder

  22. Devi says:

    It seems the issue here may be looking for a definite one-for-all rule. Many animals, in the morning, consume plants that give a rousing affect. It’s a natural and world wide practice. I observe a tendency in the American health industry to denigrate our own customs while espousing similar products from other countries or cultures – for example, green tea or maca, instead of black tea or coffee.

    Coffee is not a drug, while extracted caffeine is. Coffee is a plant that contains beneficial substances, but affects people in different ways. I love my strong coffee in the morning, with no side effects. My medical intuitive says I don’t need to stop. He did advise in a group not to drink it all day long, as some do. And he advised a friend to stop drinking it because of affects on his stomach. My daughter gets sleepy in the afternoon if she has early morning coffee. She has tea, first thing, and prepares cappuccino late morning or early afternoon – because she enjoys it, with no bad effect.

    If coffee bothers a person, I suggest self adjustment and letting others have their pleasure in peace.

  23. Em says:

    I gave up caffeine cold-turkey more than twenty years ago. I got to a point where if I arrived at work without enough time before the morning meeting, I would just add cold tap water to a couple of teaspoons of instant coffee and down the whole concoction in seconds while standing at the sink! Pretty disgusting, I know… and this was after I’d already had a cup before leaving home:(

    When I went cold-turkey, I was as sick as a dog for three days, then still quite bad for another four days. It took a further week before I started feeling ‘well’.

    So now, I have it two-three times a year when I want the effect of the drug (for whatever reason). Even having it that infrequently, I always know I’ll be paying for it a day or two later – I’ll experience a ‘come-down’ where I feel tired and flat and get a mild headache. I’ll also need extra sleep.

    Like you, Fred – I LOVE coffee – the taste, the effect it has on me (obviously not the withdrawal) – and even as Cait says – I love the ‘idea’ of it. When I do have it on those rare instances now, I always feel like I can take on the world. That’s a pretty seductive feeling!

    [I follow a high-fruit, high leafy greens, low-fat raw vegan lifestyle. From my extensive reading of Dr Mercola’s articles (I read broadly in the field of health and nutrition, which I know you do too, Fred), I know that he is totally against this and he does promote quite a different way of eating, based on his research. Despite our differences (not just dietary), I still find it useful to be aware of his take on things – diet, vaccination, vitamin D, etc. As far as getting awareness out to the public regarding the dangers of GMOs, he is a good support to Jeffrey Smith’s incredible and unparalleled work in this field.

    Having said this – I find that some of his commentators can be a bit nazi-like (I say this without any ill-will) to some of those who present a different view in the comments section;)]

  24. Kathy says:

    I love, love, love coffee, but my sensitivity to caffeine limits me to one cup a day, which is probably a good thing. If I drink more than one cup, I am over medicated and get a migraine-like headache. So I just stick to the one cup.

  25. Joelle says:

    I got over the need for speed when it started messing with me. I never liked the way it tasted, unless I added a ton of cream and sugar, and since I don’t do those anymore, it’s not worth it to have it as decaf, but since I discovered no dairy lattes and fraps, a little bit of good coffee flavor is good, but I always ask for decaf.

  26. Marina says:

    Thanks Fred! Great as always! I hate coffee and cannot see what is that is in that dark, ugly beverage that people like! Could never drink it. However, I love the smell of it…

  27. Edith Unger says:

    Hello everyone,
    I like coffee too. I tried to stop drinking it and ended up turning to tea. The tea seemed to pacify my need for coffee . I have extremely low stomach acid and have a hard time digesting any type of food even if I follow proper food combing. The only thing that helps me is a cup of coffee it adds stomach acids that really aid me so I have returned to drinking one or two cups a day. I don´t like the side effects and am quite sensitive to caffiene also. I could problably switch to decaf but a they use a lot of horrible chemicals when removing the caffiene so I don´t know if it would be any better for the health.

  28. Matt says:


    I too love the stuff but experience some similar effects as described by others here to various degrees. The worst being loosing my temper with the kids

    Someone once told me that ground black cardomon powder brewed with the coffee tends to take the edge off the negative effects without destroying the buzz. ( a middle eastern tradition apparently ? )

    Being an addict I of course had to try this. It does appear to work to some degree (or maybe I just wanted to believe that ? )

    Does anyone else know any more about this ?

    Anyway, in the end because I had to make this concoction at home ( not available in cafe’s in New Zealand ) I just drank too much of it as it was always around.

    So now I only have coffee (with out the cardomon) when I’m out ( not allowed it in the house any more – self imposed : )

    I’ve also heard that fat is an antidote for caffine ? hence people have it with milk (but then you gotta deal with the side affects of that !)

    I agree with others comments, ultimately for me, exercise and a high raw (low fat !) diet gives a more sustained “real” buzz than stimulants and better connection with my wife and kids 🙂

  29. Gavin says:

    Hi Fred,

    Great Article. Thanks. I could not stomach coffee from a very young age, as it made me throw up every time I drank it.

    I was wondering what your thoughts are on COFFEE ENEMAS? They have been very effective for cancer patients on the Gerson Therapy for flushing out the liver very rapidly. My grandmother recently recovered from esophageal cancer and we did coffee enemas, which helped her recovery.

    Thanks for your thoughts.

  30. Christian E says:

    Great article and interesting subject! 🙂

    For many years I have suffered from depression, anxiety, high levels of stress, chronic fatigue, migraines… and I can say that caffeine (and sugar) addiction for sure does not make it any better – only worse. If like me, deal with it in time or you might end up becoming so sick you are unable to work. 🙁

    In the last one or two years I have almost abandoned all green and black teas and instead I have come to love various spice and herbal teas – e.g. teas from Pukka and Yogi. Currently I drink ginger tea a lot which helps keep me warm in the dark, cold and wet weather here in Scandinavia. Recommended!

    Sadly, my country is full of coffee lovers and I do not see a change coming around anytime soon. If declining a cup of coffee and asking for a cup of tea people will often think you are ill (e.g. having a sore throat) or think that you are a health freak (and maybe homosexual too). So stupid!

  31. sheri says:

    I am very sensitive to coffee also, always avoid it, but for the last few months now I am taking moringa powder. It gives such a nice steady amount of energy, just because of the high amount of nutrients, with no stimulants. I would love to grow a moringa tree someday, the leaves are so full of amazing properties. But for now just 1 capsule, or 1/2 tsp powder does the trick for me,energy all day, with no coffee. Just make sure you find a good quality source.

  32. darmay says:

    I never get into the habit of drinking coffee so never got hooked on it. I do however love chocolate, that’s where I get my caffeine. It can give me bad headaches if I eat too much of it (plus the sugar content doesn’t do anything for my blood sugar levels except make them rise).

  33. Mayra Shaff says:

    Greetings! Very useful advice in this particular article! It is the little changes that will make the greatest changes. Thanks a lot for sharing!

  34. Thanks Frederic for opening up this interesting discussion about coffee and to everyone who added their comments about how coffee effects them! Dr. Mercola is basing his change of opinion on studies that are done by comparing dietary habits of thousands of people and incidence of disease. These are “epidemiological” studies that only show association, not causation. Thus coffee drinking and the incidence of various diseases may or may not be related even though they are associated. On the other hand, many studies on green tea and other herbal beverages are based on studies done on animals and on clinical studies with humans. Conclusions drawn from these type of studies are much more reliable as to actual effects of a substance on the body.

    For those of you who drink decaf, I highly recommend you make your own rather than use the degraded product that results from removing most but not all of the caffeine from coffee beans. Antioxidants, which are the only real health benefit coffee has, are removed during the decaffeination process whether it is done with water or chemicals. The beans are chemically altered once their caffeine is removed and thus they are degraded with inferior flavor. Many people find decaf coffee is more acidic than regular coffee because highly acidic coffee beans are used to begin with since so much flavor is lost during decaffeination.

    You can make your own “decaf” by simply blending your regular coffee with an herbal coffee like Teeccino until you get the level of caffeine you desire. (decaf coffee has similar levels of caffeine to green tea) If you don’t want any caffeine at all, drink 100% herbal coffee. It brews just like coffee in any kind of coffee brewing equipment including espresso machines.

  35. Em says:

    @ Caroline MacDougall,

    Nice bit of input there…very useful. Thanks! 🙂

  36. Brent Shull says:

    I love coffee, but limit the amount I drink each day. I am not caffeine-sensitive, but the caffeine from coffee and tea also kills Vitamin C. So, especially in the winter time, when a nice hot cup of Espresso feels good, I also know that I need to eat much more fruit and take raw food vitamin supplements to make up for the vitamin C loss.

  37. Andrew says:

    I hate coffee & i hate drugs, coffee is a drug so to me it seems stupid to drink it, you have to look at the reason you need coffee in the first place, the source of the broblem. There are many natural ways to keep your energy levels optimal during the day, food & supplements. Drinking plenty of pure water will help a lot, most people are dehydrated which saps energy.
    Like a drug addict, it seems a bit sad that people can`t get through the day without there fix, it`s got control of you, so ditch your coffee and take control of your life – NATURALLY:

  38. Kath says:

    I like café au lait, but not plain coffee. I used to drink black coffee often when I traveled, but it was a habit. Several years ago I stopped drinking coffee everyday. At first I missed drinking coffee in the morning, but it was out of habit, not a craving. Now I drink it when it is cold outside, maybe a few times a month in the winter. Or I will drink something like Pero or Roma, It is the thick texture that I like. Or I will drink a thick hot soup with miso in the morning, or a thick smoothie. Coffee had no effect on me, and when I stopped drinking coffee I did not have any headaches and it was easy to stop, there was no withdrawal. I drink chai tea a few times, but mostly I like water or Kombucha.

  39. Jodi Renaud says:

    Funny, I just finished eating Ben and jerry’s vegan coffee I’ve cream…I only bought it because it was a great price…however I shouldn’t have. I am also very sensitive to caffeine and try to avoid it. I did try green tea with caffeine. This also made me act irrationally lol..I quickly switched back to decaf.

  40. web says:

    400 million people drink coffee in Europe. All of central/south america drink coffee. Africa & part of middle east drink coffee. a small percentage(less than 5%) are sensitive to caffeine or theine. Both tea and coffee are beneficial drinks.

  41. Jamie says:

    This article has come with perfect timing for me. I’m going through coffee withdrawal symptoms at the moment and they’re the worst I’ve ever had. I’m severely depressed and lacking energy. Feel I can barely make it through the day let alone cope with my 2 children and work. I’ve been through it before many times as I keep going back to coffee when I feel I need a boost but hope I never will drink it again after this episode. I’ve even phoned the doctor as I feel there must be something else going on as I wasn’t expecting to feel this bad. Hopefully another few days and I’ll get back to normal.
    When I drink coffee it’s only usually 1 -2 cups a day but I must also be quite sensitive to it. After 2-3 days of drinking it I start to feel what I can only describe as brain fog where I can’t think straight and also get shakey hands. So I give it up and get strong cravings for it and then withdrawal symptoms and either have to push through or give in and have a coffee but it can easily end up in a vicious cycle of giving up and drinking it again. This time I feel I need to push through these symptoms and never go back even though I love the initial feeling after a coffee and the atmosphere of a nice coffee shop.

  42. ilse maes says:

    Hi, I rarely use coffee : my stomach bloats (I think due to corisol level); Decaf is better but IS THAT HEALTHY? Think not… Boyfried had severe migraines in the past. I – as the health seaker 😉 – advised him to stop caffeine (also chocolate), cheese, smoking, alcohol…and NO MORE migraines. After 6 months he introduced them all but in moderation and now he can eat/drink it all ! Lots of love from Belgium 🙂

  43. Linda says:

    This article you wrote is a few years old. Coffee is a trillion dollar industry, so articles are always coming out to say it is good for this and that. For me I chose to give up all caffeine after suffering IBS and anxiety for the first time some years ago. I was an addict, could not start my day without coffee, could not go out for the day unless I scheduled in a coffee break or two. The amount of times I searched and walked a lot to find a good coffee and the money I spent I now save. It really is an addiction and little did I know once I gave up I realized it did make me irritable, keep me awake and some of the other symptoms you listed I also suffered. It truly is liberating to give it up. I am now addicted to Lemon Verbena tea but often can substitute with other herbal teas starting with the lemon word, lemon myrtle, lemon balm etc.

  44. GRH says:

    The article sounds very ‘he said, she said, but whatever buy this book’.
    Mercola has his point of view and you have yours; there is too much conflicting information that just confuses and scares people. If coffee upsets you then don’t drink it, it is that simple. Do we really need all this entrenching of opinions and division between drinkers and non-drinkers; there is no kudos or saintliness in either camp. It is personal choice and preference, a decision made to drink it or not for whatever reason. I am a tea drinker both traditional and herbal. I like coffee too and some days will drink it exclusively and then not touch it again for weeks, months or years. So what.

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