Having inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is bad enough, do I have to give up coffee and tea too? The answer: may be yes or no.

Caffeine's effects can be different depending on a person's sensitivity. For example, in some people, it can overstimulate the GI system and cause diarrhea. It can also overstimulate the nervous system and cause jitters, shakes, and difficulty sleeping. Furthermore, high caffeine can also cause gastroesophageal reflux (GERD), increased blood pressure, and possibly osteoporosis. Yet, there are some people that may never experience any of these symptoms. So, before you give up give up for beloved caffeine, you should try tracking your consumption along with any symptoms that follow to see if it is a trigger food or not. 

Effects of caffeine:

  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Can cause shakiness, jitters, and fidgeting
  • Diarrhea (which can lead to dehydration)
  • GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease) or just reflux, especially after a filling meal or several cups
  • Can increase blood pressure (for those that are sensitive to caffeine)
  • May accelerate bone loss (osteoporosis) especially when losing calcium or not taking Vitamin D .
  • Can cause increased weight gain from creamer and sugar added to coffee or from the 30 grams of sugar (that's 150 calories) in some energy drinks

How Much Caffeine is in my Cup?

When tracking your caffeine, it may help to know the amount you are consuming per day.   You may find that there is a certain amount you can tolerate before you have symptoms.

                                                                          Caffeine (mg) per cup   

                                Coffee, regular                                  80 – 200

                                Coffee, expresso                              64 – 75

                                Coffee, decaf                                       2 – 15

                                Tea, black (hot or iced)                  60 – 90  

                                Tea, green                                           35 – 70

                                Soda                                                      29 – 37

                                Energy drinks                                      80           

                                Hot chocolate                                     5 – 10

Bottom Line

Different people have different responses to caffeine. The best way to determine if caffeine affects you is to track your triggers.

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