Does Coffee Hurt or Help?

Waking up for high school at 6 in the morning  was the hardest part of the day, but I always knew an Iced Coffee from Dunkin Donuts would surely get me in a better mood. Before school started, I’d often drive over to the Dunkin Donuts only about a mile away from my school. I’d see the same faces every morning and they knew I was always happy when I saw my medium mocha iced coffee in the hands of the barista. A few sips in and I tasted happiness, but it wasn’t until the whole coffee was gone and I was finally settled in at my first period class when the stomach cramps would finally begin. I’d often feel nauseous and my palms would began to sweat, but I had always sacrificed this feeling in order to feel more awake and enjoy the taste of it. Why does coffee continuously give me stomach cramps and is there any possible way of preventing it?

According to Shannon Campbell, it is common for people to have stomach pains after drinking coffee. However, there is not just one reason why people can suffer from this stomach pain. One reason could be because of coffee’s caffeine. The caffeine can have a negative affect on people because it produces acid, which can cause an upset stomach. Another possible reason could not be the coffee at all, but because of a confounding variable – the milk. Many humans suffer from being lactose intolerant and don’t even know it. So, when they order their coffee with milk, it could just be the milk causing their stomach stress and not the coffee. The simplest answer to this problem could just be consuming coffee on an empty stomach.coffee-2 Sometimes coffee just doesn’t settle with one’s stomach when they haven’t eaten anything.

Although those answers could be the reason why coffee upsets our stomach, how can we prevent it from happening? According to WebMD, a certain chemical produced when darker-roasted coffee is roasted could help relieve stomach pain.  According to coffee chemistry, the chemical is produced because of extreme temperature the coffee bean undergoes during the roasting. At high temperatures, the coffee bean begins to internally crack, which ultimately makes this chemical. The chemical is less acidic; however, it is only found in a dark-roast coffee. So, if your looking for a lighter-roasted coffee, this solution doesn’t seem to be much help! Another possible solution could be to just eat something and drink plenty of water before consuming your next cup of coffee.  For those who may fear that the milk is causing them an upset, try substituting the milk with either coconut milk or almond milk, it is much healthier an won’t give you those dreaded stomach cramps.

So, for all the coffee addicts who would do anything for their next cup of coffee, I hope this blog helped! For me, I know that eating before drinking my morning coffee could definitely help, since most mornings I often skip breakfast and substitute it with a cup of coffee – obviously not the smartest decision!

Picture Credit

Sources:

http://www.webmd.com/digestive-disorders/news/20100322/brewing-gentler-java?page=2

http://www.livestrong.com/article/517656-can-coffee-cause-gas-and-an-upset-stomach/

https://www.thrillist.com/vice/facts-myths-trivia-about-coffee-debunked

https://www.coffeechemistry.com/quality/roasting/chemical-changes-during-roasting

 

4 thoughts on “Does Coffee Hurt or Help?

  1. Parker Jax Yochim

    I know there is a lot of banter within the scientific community as to whether or not coffee is actually good for someone to drink. It being the most widely consumed beverage in the world, I often wonder why nobody has done a truly in depth study on coffee and its long term effects on the body. Caffeine itself is not very good for the body, but I wonder if there are other components of coffee that could be beneficial.

  2. Francis Patrick Cotter

    I have always wondered why coffee can make me uncomfortable. This posts brings up some good points. There seems to be an understanding that coffee is unhealthy and that caffeine is bad for you. I’m not sure how substantial those claims are.

  3. Matthew Jacobs-Womer

    Hi Gulianna, I really enjoyed this post. I love coffee but as far as I can remember, and I feel that I can somewhat relate to your situation. For me, drinking coffee is more of a afternoon or night time thing (mostly night), I hardly ever drink a coffee in the early morning. The problem occurs if I try to drink a hot coffee in the middle of the day, especially when it is nice out. I have no clue why this happens but it makes me feel even more tired and out of it than I was before I drank the coffee. For this reason, I stopped drinking hot coffee during the day and went to iced coffees, frappes, or nothing at all. At night time is when I really enjoy a hot coffee, sometimes drinking between 2-6 cups, depending what I am doing. I hope you find the solution to solve your post coffee stomach cramps.

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