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5 Top caffeine questions, answered

Get the know-how about caffeine



Q: ‘I drink diet cola, but what about the Ingredients in it Besides caffeIne? Is It Bad for me?’

A: Diet cola may be kilojoule-free, but it’s no health food. most brands contain chemicals like phosphoric acid, an ingredient also used in fertiliser. (Craving it a little less now?) In addition, says dietitian Ilyse Schapiro, fake sugars like aspartame have been linked to weight gain.


Q: ‘I caved and ordered a post-dinner espresso. what can I do to make sure I fall asleep?’

A: Sadly, there’s nothing you can do to speed the exit of caffeine from your body, says sleep expert Dr Hans Van Dongen. The good news is that a shot of espresso has 25% to 50% less caffeine than a cup of regular coffee, probably because of coffee’s longer brew time, says matt Lounsbury, director of operations at a popular coffee-shop chain.


Q: ‘I love my extra-strong dose of coffee, but when I drink it, I feel impatient and even a little angry. Am I imagining things?’

A:  When certain stimulants, including caffeine, interact with your particular body chemistry, they can have a negative impact on brain function and mood, Wenk says. ‘For some people, this happens with chocolate. We call it chocolate anger.’ Why this occurs is largely a mystery, but it may be hereditary. So if you’re slightly hostile after consuming certain forms of caffeine, stick to the ones that keep you on an even keel.


Q: ‘I often go for energy drInks instead of coffee. Should I break the habit?’

A:  Yes, says Schapiro. Energy drinks can cause side effects like insomnia, elevated heart rate and an upset stomach.


Q: ‘HeartBurn is in full force. What can I do?’

A:  If acidic beverages like coffee trigger heartburn, the fix may be as simple as drinking smaller amounts or taking an acid blocker before you sip. But, sad to say, if symptoms are severe, you should really cut out caffeine completely

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