The Effects Of Caffeine On The Body: Pros And Cons

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Drinking coffee has been a part of everyday living for most, if not everyone. The addictive taste and aroma, and the relaxing feeling it can bring to people make this a primary choice for those who are stressed out or looking for extra energy to boost their day and become more productive.

With this in mind, let’s take a look at the impact caffeine can have on your health.

Effects Of Caffeine On Your Body: The Good And The Bad

The Good Effects Of Caffeine

There are many good reasons why one would continue taking caffeine or coffee in particular. Below are a few of the beneficial effects you can get from caffeine.

1. Drinking Coffee Increases Your Fiber Intake

A study shows that coffee has soluble fiber, the cellulose found both in apples and oatmeal, that helps digestion, aids in the vital nutrient absorption of the body and keeps a lid on cholesterol.

Drinking a cup of coffee, specifically brewed, represents a contribution of around 1.8 grams of fiber.

Take 20 to 38 grams of fiber daily to fulfill the daily recommendations. Just keep in mind that this should not all come from coffee. Nevertheless, taking a cup or two can help you sustain or complete the recommended amount of fiber intake.

2. Caffeine Reduces Suicide Risk And Depression

According to studies performed by researchers at HSPH (Harvard School of Public Health), drinking several cups of coffee seem to reduce suicide risk for both men and women by about 50%. Caffeine, which is highly active in coffee, may work as a mild antidepressant, as it boosts production of different neurotransmitters in the brain, like dopamine, noradrenaline, and serotonin.

Although helpful, researchers do not recommend depressed adults increase their caffeine consumption too easily because people may adjust their intake to an optimal level and sudden or too much increase could result in unpleasant side effects.

3. Reduces Colorectal Cancer Risk

You may choose to drink decaf, black coffee, even half-caff or instant. Whatever you choose to consume may help decrease the possible risk of colorectal cancer, as per a recent study. It was found that the more coffee you drink, the lower the risk you may face colorectal cancer.

Drinking a cup or two of coffee may reduce the possibilities of developing colorectal cancer by 26%. And the risk of colorectal cancer may decrease to possibly up to 50% if you’re taking 2.5 cups of coffee in a day. The sign of decreased risk is observed in all types of coffee, both decaffeinated and caffeinated.

This particular conclusion was gathered by Stephen Gruber, the director of the Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center, together with the senior authors of this particular study.

effects of caffeine
A cup of coffee contains 95 mg of caffeine.

The Bad Effects Of Caffeine On Your Body

Anything taken more than recommended may result in negative effects. Each body has its own requirement. Thus, it is right to calculate BMR, consult a specialist or know your limit before you decide to adjust your coffee intake.

Below are a few negative effects that caffeine may bring to your body:

1. Caffeine May Cause Insomnia

All around the world, people take caffeine, not only coffee but tea, chocolate, cocoa and some soft drinks. Since caffeine is a known stimulant, most people take caffeine, mostly coffee, after waking up or to stay alert all throughout the day.

Although you need to know that coffee cannot replace sleep, it can temporarily make you feel more alert as it blocks the sleep-inducing chemicals in your brain and increases adrenaline production.

Too much coffee consumption may result in insomnia; because it is a stimulant it impedes sleep. Having trouble staying asleep or falling asleep are two of the things one may experience.

2. Caffeine Can Cause Headaches

Caffeine does not directly cause a headache. However, too much consumption of the substance triggers ‘coffee rebound’. A rebound headache happens from the withdrawal of caffeine once the sufferer continues to consume a high volume of the substance.

If you experience this dilemma, it’s recommended that you contact a specialist promptly to be treated and not worsen.

3. Caffeine Can Cause Indigestion

Indigestion can be experienced when you consume caffeine, particularly coffee. Coffee may increase stomach acid production, which can lead to indigestion as one of its normal side effects. This symptom should only last for a few hours. If the symptom persists you need to contact your doctor.

To Sum Up

Just like anything you consume, not limited to only caffeine, too much consumption can serve you bad side effects. There are good things caffeine, coffee to be specific, can bring to your body.

You do not need to completely stop consuming something that can bring your body good. It is only necessary that you take it in the right amounts.

Seek professional advice if you feel worse from taking caffeine. Ask about the right amount your body can consume to make sure you get all the benefits of coffee and not the other way around.


Do you like to drink coffee or tea? Have you experienced any benefits of caffeine?

Share your thoughts below in the comment section.


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20 Proven Reasons Why Refined Sugar Is Bad For Your Health

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You’ve heard it said before…Sugar is bad for you. But what does that really mean?

The research continues to stack up against our biggest dietary enemy…refined sugar.

In fact, no matter how much we crave the sweet stuff sugar is our nutritional nemesis. Processed sugar (not fat) is the cause of many modern diseases and plays a major role in several major health problems, including fatty liver disease, obesity, cancer, heart disease, diabetes and asthma.

So let’s take an inside look at the facts.

20 Proven Reasons Why Refined Sugar Is Bad For Your Health

  1. Sugar causes tooth decay (1).
  2. Eating excess sugar can cause fatty liver disease (2).
  3. Sugar depletes the body of nutrients and suppresses the immune system (3).
  4. Sugar, not saturated fat, raises cholesterol and causes cardiovascular disease (4, 5, 6). I’m glad they finally cleared this up!
  5. Consuming sugar can cause insulin resistance as well as metabolic syndrome (7).
  6. Sugar can cause mood disorders and depression (8).
  7. Sugar causes inflammation which can lead to disease (9).
  8. Eating sugar causes wrinkles (10).
  9. Sugar is highly addictive, “as addictive as cocaine” (11).
  10. Sugar increases the risk of cancer because it causes metabolic changes (12, 13).
  11. Consuming sugar causes obesity, a leading cause of mortality and chronic disease in the United States (14).
  12. Sugar is a leading cause of Type 2 diabetes (15).
  13. Sugar impacts the brain and is linked to Alzheimer’s disease (16).
  14. Eating sugar can cause osteoporosis (17).
  15. Sugar causes high blood pressure (18).
  16. Eating and drinking sugar increases your appetite (19).
  17. Sugar consumption can cause kidney stones (20).
  18. Sugar can cause food allergies as well as asthma (21).
  19. Dietary sugar produces free radicals and damages DNA (22).
  20. Sugar may contribute to poor eyesight and macular degeneration (23).

If you are wondering how much sugar you eat feel free to visit SugarStacks.com which measures common foods people eat in sugar cubes.

why refined sugar is bad for your health

The Takeaway

Refined sugar is full of empty calories and is highly addictive. Eating it makes you hungrier and increases your risk for an array of diseases, chronic health conditions and mood disorders.

Eating sugar (or not eating sugar) is a personal choice.

why refined sugar is bad for your health
Fruit is a fiber-filled, healthy alternative to foods high in processed sugars.

If you want to cut down on your sugar intake but still crave something sweet, try substituting fruit. It’s fiber-rich, packed with antioxidants and is naturally sweet.

Also, if you’re looking for a natural sugar substitute that is actually good for you, I recommend Stevia. You can learn more about it in Stevia Health Benefits, Safety And Inside Information.


What’s your favorite tip for cutting back on sugar? What do you eat when you’re craving something sweet?

Let me know what you think about sugar below in the comment section!


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Chocolate Coconut Energy Balls: Protein-Rich And Delicious!

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I was recently experimenting with my favorite chocolate protein powder and came up with a super yummy recipe I think (hope) you’re going to love! These Chocolate Coconut Energy Balls are protein-rich, healthful and keto-friendly. They are excellent for a grab-and-go snack on the run. I made a batch this weekend and took them to Emma’s all-day volleyball tournament. She loved the chocolatey taste and David and I enjoyed them too!

They are quick and easy to make and keep well in the fridge. Feel free to add other ingredients to suit your health goals and taste buds. Here are some ideas for add-ins:

  • dark chocolate chips
  • old-fashioned oats
  • hemp seeds
  • chopped nuts
  • pumpkin seeds
  • dried cranberries

The possibilities are endless!

energy balls
Ingredients

Chocolate Coconut Energy Balls

1 cup natural nut butter, smooth or creamy (I used peanut butter)
2-3 T. honey
2 cups unsweetened coconut flakes
1 ½ cups MorelliFit Grass-Fed Whey Protein Isolate
2 T. chia seeds
3-6 T. water

Heat nut butter and honey for 30 seconds in the microwave and stir. Add all other ingredients and mix everything together. You want them to stick together so you can roll them into balls. You can add more water to adjust the texture.

Roll them into balls. Place them on a parchment paper-covered cookie sheet or platter. Then put them in the fridge for at least an hour to set.

These are great on the go, muscle-building post-workout or delicious for those times when you’re craving chocolate! 

Related: 12 Surprising Health Benefits Of Chia Seeds

energy balls
Chocolate Coconut Energy Balls

Great Deal On Protein Powder

If you’d like to try a high-quality, delicious protein powder here’s a link to my favorite:  MorelliFit 100% Grass-Fed Whey Protein

Be sure to use my code: HEALTHYLIFE to get an extra 15% off!


Do you have a favorite protein powder recipe you can share? 

Please leave your comments and suggestions below. I love hearing your thoughts!


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Setting and Maintaining Your New Year’s Nutrition Goals

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The new year is here, which means it’s time to buckle down and get started on your resolutions. If one of your resolutions was to lose weight or eat a healthier diet, this means setting nutritional goals and sticking to them. As anyone who has ever done it can tell you, changing the way you eat is hard but can be done with a little dedication and a few easy tricks that will help you stick to your plan.

Here’s everything you need to know about setting and maintaining nutritional goals in the new year.

Setting and Maintaining Your New Year’s Nutrition Goals

1. Goal Setting

The first and most important part of changing your nutrition is deciding what your goals are. When doing this, it can be tempting to start looking for prefabricated diet plans claiming to be the ideal solution for everyone. However, it’s important to understand at the outset that the best plan for you is the one you’ll actually stick to and that best fits your goals.

As such, it’s generally best to avoid looking for one-size-fits-all diets. If you pick a diet that isn’t best for your body and your goals, you’ll have a hard time sticking to it and won’t maximize the health benefits of adopting a new diet. If you can’t decide what dietary regimen is right for you, consider talking to your doctor or a certified nutritionist who can make some recommendations that are in line with what you want to achieve.

It’s also important that your goals be both specific and realistic. Non-specific goals have very little value, as you can’t measure progress adequately. For instance, deciding to lose 25 pounds over the year is better than simply resolving to lose weight, since it has a measurable threshold for success.

Unrealistic goals, meanwhile, are tantamount to self-sabotage. Once you set and fail to live up to an unrealistic set of goals, you’ll likely lose your motivation and stop trying to change your habits altogether.

In addition to being somewhat personalized, therefore, your goals should be as specific as possible and reasonably achievable.

2. How To Stick To Your Goals

Plan It Out

Once you’ve decided on a set of goals for yourself, it’s time to put yourself to work on reaching them. Remaining consistent is everything when it comes to weight loss and health in general, so it’s critical that you’re able to maintain your plan over the long haul.

One of the best ways to do this is to set small but important milestones. If your goal is to lose weight, for instance, your first small milestone might be losing three pounds in the first month of the year. Though it’s a small accomplishment, you should actually celebrate it and reward yourself for it, since doing so will give you positive feedback and motivation to continue for the rest of the year.

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An accountability partner can help you stay on track with your nutrition goals.

Hold Yourself Accountable To An Accountability Partner

Another very effective method of maintaining your action toward your goals is to find an accountability partner. An accountability partner is someone with whom you’ve shared your goal and who will check you on a regular basis to make sure that you’re staying on top of it.

If possible, try to find a partner with similar goals to your own so you can help each other. Having an accountability partner introduces a psychological incentive for you to keep up with the goals you’ve set for yourself, as failure to do so will mean actually telling someone else you haven’t done what you said you were going to do. Though it may seem like a small matter, an accountability partner can give you the extra little push you need to stay consistent.

The Takeaway

These are just a few of the ways you can set and maintain your goals. Be sure you devote some time to setting your goals. Good goals will keep your motivated, while poorly set goals will ultimately backfire and prevent you from achieving your nutritional and health goals for the year.

Once you’ve come up with a set of well-structured goals, success is just a matter of sticking to them every day and maintaining your progress.

British Solomon is a contributing writer and media specialist for Clean Juice. She regularly produces content for a variety of health and lifestyle blogs.


What helps you stay on track with your nutrition goals? 

Share your thoughts below in the comment section!


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Top 20 Best Healthy Snacks

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Who can deny that snacking is an American tradition (at least in our family)? What we graze on during the day has a big impact on our health.

What’s your favorite snack food? Chips, Oreos, Cheetos or Twinkies perhaps? No judgment here. My snack choices haven’t always been perfect either.

Just some food for thought….

As you probably guessed, the best snacks are those packed with nutrients and protein, which fuels the body until the next meal. These snacks are full of flavor, and dare I say, even fun to eat!

I used to teach preschoolers, what can I say? 🙂

20 Healthy Snacks

  1. Nut Butter

    Peanut butter, peanut butter, how do I love thee? Let me count the ways…

    Seriously, who can resist the creamy, nutty confection that is peanut butter?! And don’t forget the lesser known nut butters: hazelnut, cashew, almond, and walnut.

    According to the Harvard School of Public Health Nutrition Source, several large studies over the past few years “have shown a consistent 30 to 50 percent lower risk of heart attack, sudden cardiac death or cardiovascular disease associated with eating nuts several times a week.”

    Plus, 2 tablespoons of peanut butter has 7 grams of protein and 180 mg of potassium. Just make sure to check out the ingredient list and avoid added sweeteners and trans fats, especially “partially hydrogenated oil”. Also, don’t bother buying the “low-fat” nut butters. Manufactures of these products simply replace the fat with sugar.

    Related: 20 Reasons Why Refined Sugar Is Bad For Your Health

  2. Cottage Cheese

    Once considered a “diet food”,  cottage cheese is now a fan favorite of weightlifters, other athletes, and health foodies alike. This is no surprise considering the whopping 28 grams of casein protein in each cup of cottage cheese.

    A summer favorite of mine is eating a sliced tomato, straight from the garden, topped with cottage cheese and plenty of Himalayan Pink Sea Salt. Sounds weird, tastes great! You also might like to try cottage cheese with fresh pineapple. Delish!

    healthy snacks
    Berries are a low-sugar, antioxidant-rich snack.
  3. Berries

    Strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, cranberries, gooseberries and elderberries just to name a few…They are colorful, juicy, often sweet, and full of vitamins and antioxidants (1).

    Enjoy a cup of berries with a splash of cream for a decadent treat.

  4. Whey Protein Shake

    Whey protein can help you gain muscle, lose fat, and increase strength (2). I sometimes drink one as a meal replacement and I’m amazed how long it satisfies my hunger. You might want to try My Favorite Peanut Butter Protein Shake.

    Most people tolerate regular whey protein concentrate, but if you have digestive symptoms you might find that isolate or hydrolysate is better suited for you.

    Our favorite protein powder is MorelliFit 100% Grass-Fed Whey Protein. It is gluten-free, contains 5 natural ingredients, no artificial sweeteners, < 1 g of sugar and  25 G protein per serving. Plus it tastes delicious! You can follow the link above or below to purchase. Make sure to use my coupon code: HEALTHYLIFE for an extra 15% off your purchase.

  5. Eggs

    Eggs are incredibly nutritious (3). Like, the perfect food. They are high in protein, healthy fats and amino acids.

    They’re also high in cholesterol, but despite what you may have heard in the past, eating high-cholesterol foods does not increase cholesterol for most people (4).

  6. Plain Greek Yogurt

    It’s creamy and rich in protein and probiotics. It can also cut the appetite and help with weight loss (5).

    You may want to add berries, other chopped fruit or nuts to raise the vitamin and fiber content.

  7. Cheese

    Cheese has many vitamins and minerals, including calcium, zinc and vitamin K2. Eating it can help prevent osteoporosis and heart disease (6). And the fat in cheese can help you feel full longer, preventing cravings and helping you make it to the next meal.

  8. Jerky

    Jerky is meat, such as veal, beef, turkey or venison which is dried and cut into strips. It is low in carbohydrates and high in protein.

    The healthiest kind is made at home. But the kind you see at the grocery store has all sorts of added preservatives and sugar so please keep this in mind.

    healthy snacks
    Dark chocolate is full of antioxidants and makes the perfect snack.
  9. Dark Chocolate

    Are you surprised chocolate made it to this list of healthy snacks? Pretty cool, huh?

    Studies have shown that dark chocolate eaters have a lower risk of heart disease (7). Eating chocolate can also improve brain function.

    Choose dark chocolate with a 70-85% cocoa content (minimum). Any less and you’re looking at a lot of sugar.

  10. Deli Rollups

    Simply take a slice of meat, such as turkey and a slice of cheese. Roll it up, and voila! Also, spreading cream cheese on the turkey and wrapping it around a dill pickle is a delicious treat. You can slice it first, or simply eat it like this.

  11. Canned Tuna

    Tuna is another high-protein snack and a great choice if you’re on the go. Just be sure your office buddies are cool with the smell if you decide to pop open a can in the afternoon.

    healthy snacks
    Veggies are rich in antioxidants and make the perfect snack, especially when paired with hummus.
  12. Veggies And Hummus

    If you’ve never tried hummus I encourage you to give it a try. Some might say it’s an acquired taste, but I’ve loved it from my first taste and make my own from home.

    I throw some white beans, garlic, lemon juice, cumin and olive oil in the blender and it makes the most creamy and delicious hummus in no time. Here’s a similar recipe you might like to try:  Super Easy Hummus

  13. Protein Bar

    Homemade ones are the best. But if you like having prepackaged ones on hand I recommend you try the Luna, Kind and Quest ones.

  14. Kefir Smoothie

    Kefir (pronounced like “Kiefer Sutherland” the actor in 24 – I love that show.) is full of tummy-loving probiotics and protein.

    On its own, kefir is tart (and perhaps a little “gloppy”), and many prefer to drink it in a smoothie.

    Using Kefir In Everyday Recipes is a simple recipe for creating tasty smoothies, chock full of delicious flavor and nutrition using both fresh and frozen fruit.

    Related: What Are Probiotics And Where Can I Find Them? and 7 Reasons To Take Probiotics

  15. Seeds

    Pumpkin, sunflower, hemp, flax and chia seeds give you quick, long-lasting energy and satiety. They can be eaten alone or in smoothies, oatmeal or granola. One serving of pumpkin seeds (pepitas) has 7 grams of protein.

  16. Bean And Cheese Mini Quesadillas

    Smash 1/3 cup of black beans and spread it on a small tortilla. Sprinkle with 1/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese and 2 tablespoons of salsa. Warm in a skillet or pop it in the microwave for a few seconds just until the cheese melts.

    This is a tasty mini-meal/snack that stays with you.

  17. Milk (2% Or Whole)

    Milk is a great source of high-quality protein, as well as vitamin D, calcium and B12. It is linked to higher bone density in humans (8).

    Do not, I repeat, do not worry about the fat in whole milk. As long as you drink a serving size you’ll be fine. The fat keeps you satisfied longer. More importantly, growing research shows a myriad of health benefits of consuming full-fat food versus low-fat (10).

    According to Dr. Mercola, “Accumulating research is showing, however, that this switch to low-fat has not only caused rates of chronic disease to skyrocket; it’s also been making people fat.”

    Please keep in mind, some people are allergic to the sugar in milk – lactose. If you’re lactose-intolerant you’ll want to stay away from cow’s milk and other dairy products. There is dairy-free milk on the market, such as coconut, soy and cashew milk which should be fine for you to drink.

  18. 4-Ingredient Peanut Butter Energy Bites

    Liv over at Healthy-Liv.com posted this yummy recipe for peanut butter energy bites.

    I just made them for my family and they were delicious! But let me warn you, it’s hard to eat just one!

  19. Frozen Grapes

    The perfect sweet treat!

    The anthocyanins and resveratrol in grapes reduce inflammation and lower your risk for disease (9)

  20. Homemade Guacamole And Tortilla Chips

    My personal favorite. I can eat an entire bowl of freshly made guacamole all by myself…it’s that’s good! (Not that I’m recommending you do this, just keepin’ it real.)

    Here’s my favorite recipe:

Quick And Easy Guacamole

Quick And Easy Guacamole

Ingredients

  • 3 to 4 medium avocados
  • 1/4 to 1/2 onion, chopped
  • 1 to 2 firm tomatoes, diced
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
  • sea salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Cut the avocados open lengthwise. Remove the pit with a large knife. Scoop out the flesh into a bowl.
  2. Mash the avocado flesh with a fork, to your liking.
  3. Chop and stir the other ingredients.
  4. Enjoy the guacamole right away.
  5. Store in the fridge, tightly covered with plastic wrap to help prevent browning (if you have any leftover)
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The Takeaway

There are many delicious snacks to choose from. And the best ones are those that help you become the healthiest, strongest version of yourself.


What are your favorite healthy snacks?

Please share below in the comment section.


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Also, you may want to check out this video below for more great healthy snacking ideas.

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