What is the Best Time to Drink Coffee?
Hot, iced, black or with cream and sugar – yep, coffee comes in all shapes and sizes. And we love it for it.
Most of us can’t imagine starting our day without a fresh roast of our favorite java. We rely on this magic drink to get us out of bed and into the never-ending cycle of work, school, chores, and responsibilities.
Coffee is packed with caffeine, a central nervous stimulant that helps us stay alert and wide-awake for hours to come. It is said that the most popular drink in the world is actually the most widely consumed psychoactive drug.
Still, people around the world are enamored with this pungent brew and relish in its effects.
But, could it be that we’ve had it wrong this whole time? Is it possible that our favorite drink is not the best morning option after all?
Some experts believe so.
To shed some light on these speculations, we’ve decided to delve a bit deeper into the wondrous world of coffee and share a few insights relating to common coffee drinking habits.
So, if you’re wondering what’s the best time to drink coffee, you should probably brace yourself…and possibly pour yourself another cup to calm your nerves.
Effects of Coffee on the Body and Mind
Before we get into the specifics, it would probably be best to conduct a short background check on coffee. To be able to know when we should drink coffee, we need to understand how coffee affects our bodies. This is a great starting point, as it will give us some clarity on how different drinking habits can affect our health, mood and overall well being.
This is where caffeine comes in. The chemical is known to provide plenty of benefits from increased mental alertness and lower blood pressure to the prevention of Diabetes, Gallbladder Disease, and reduced cholesterol. It is even said that consuming drinks with high caffeine content, like coffee, can lower the chances of heart diseases and strokes.
So far so good, right?
Well, there’s a slightly darker side to coffee…and we’re not talking about plain black coffee either.
Although coffee is considered quite healthy when consumed in moderation, it can also cause certain undesired effects such as insomnia, increased heart rate, anxiety attacks, and even vomiting. Research shows that drinking too much coffee can also worsen the effects of Irritable Bowel Syndrome, Osteoporosis and Glaucoma.
All of this simply shows that coffee, while it can be quite beneficial, it can also present a serious risk to one’s health. While the science is pretty clear, your drinking habits can only be formed by examining your own physical and mental state.
But, let’s take things a bit further.
It’s All About Cortisol
Feeling pretty stressed lately? You just might want to take it up with Cortisol.
Cortisol is the main stress hormone in our bodies, it’s what regulates our overall mood, fears, and even motivation. It is responsible for many things happening inside our bodies like maintaining blood pressure levels, boosting energy, lowering inflammations and also – regulating our sleep cycle.
Cortisol is linked to our circadian rhythm, the process that regulates our sleep-wake cycle. The cycle is pretty straightforward but it can oscillate from one person to another. This means that most people have the highest cortisol levels in the morning hours and lowest around midnight – just in time for sleep. Pretty smart, right?
So, what happens when cortisol meets caffeine?
Once caffeine enters our bloodstream our cortisol levels increase even further. In simple terms – our bodies get a double dose of stress
This is the main reason why professionals have started examining the effects of drinking coffee early in the morning. Scientists believe that this common habit could induce acute stress conditions and result in increased heart rate, anxiety, tremors, and shakes.
If you ever noticed your hands trembling after you’ve had your morning cuppa, now you know that this is your body’s response to the increased cortisol in the bloodstream.
However, certain studies suggest that those who drink coffee regularly might not be as affected as those who indulge in java on an occasional basis. The research shows that developing a coffee-drinking routine every day at the same time could help your body adapt to the hormonal changes happening in your body, making it more resistant in the process.
Rundown? If you do enjoy drinking coffee early in the morning, it’s better if you enjoy it every day at the same time.
Best Time to Drink Coffee
By now you’ve probably started dozing off after reading so many medical terms and studies that you’ve decided to brew yourself a nice, strong cup of coffee.
Don’t worry though, by the time you finish reading this article, your cortisol levels will decrease and a refreshing cuppa might be a great pick-me-up solution.
So, finally, what’s the best time to drink coffee? The answer is simple – depends on when you wake up!
The general rule is that you should wait for at least a couple of hours after waking up to start gulping on the beverage.
If you’re an early bird and generally wake up between 6-7 in the morning, the perfect time to drink coffee would be around 9-10 a.m. This time gap will allow your cortisol levels to stabilize and you won’t be causing too much stress on your body by consuming too much caffeine.
Instead of bolting to the coffee maker as soon as you open your eyes, use this time to have a hearty breakfast, possibly do some light exercise or catch up on your work.
By the time you’re finished with all this, you may reward yourself with a big cup of freshly roasted coffee to get you through the rest of your day.