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  1. #1
    gonzo
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    Caffeine in moderation

    What's a good amount of caffeine to consume in order to reap all its benefits for mind and body, without developing a dependency?


    Also, what are the best times of the day to consume it?

    Instinctively I think it would be in the morning, but I figure the body is already "on the rise" at that time so caffeine might be more practical in the afternoon instead..

  2. #2
    gonzo
    Guest

    Caffeine in moderation

    I really don't want to feel jittery because I compete in soccer, and timing and a great touch are important.

  3. #3

    Join Date
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    Caffeine in moderation

    Not much evidence that an excess of caffeine is all that much harmful.

  4. #4
    AS
    Guest

    Caffeine in moderation

    Have some caffeine when you feel you need it. My morning isn't complete without my morning coffee...actually I like a good cup of coffee any time in the day.

  5. #5
    Senior Member
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    Caffeine in moderation

    for a workout aid 200mg aprox 10-15min prior to the session. The more you take at other times of the day, the less of a difference it'll make here.

    I don't know anything about the rest of that

  6. #6
    Half Full
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    Caffeine in moderation

    Yeah there's nothing wrong with caffeine in moderation. In fact, I think it is beneficial - improves mental alertness, gives you overall energy, increases metabolism. I take 200mg 30-60 before workout quite often, (usually early morning) and sometimes later in the day if I'm going to be up studying all night and don't feel like drinking coffee. On that note, however, coffee would be your best choice.

    As for developing a dependency, that will depend on the individual - some take more than others without a problem. Just monitor it and you will notice. It's not hard to cut back if you need, just have to deal with some headaches in the beginning. Based on what I've read in the past, I would say if you stay under 500-600 mg/day (which is kind of a lot), you'll likely have no adverse effects.

  7. #7
    Colorista
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    Caffeine in moderation

    Of course, I failed to bookmark the article I read a few months ago about caffeine, addiction, sleep disruption, blood pressure issues, and all the other things associated with caffeine. Wish I'd kept it, because it had interesting insight into how caffeine actually works. Essentially, it blocks the hormone that regulates your sleepiness. The alertness you get from caffeine is technically not stimulation, but the absence of any sleepiness. Which is why you 'crash' -- all those sleepy hormones come rushing back in after the caffeine wears off.

    Basically: caffeine in moderation is fine. An 8-oz cup of coffee has roughly 130 mg of caffeine, depending on the brew. Believe it or not, darker roasts have less caffeine. Caffeine pills (No-doz, etc) have about 200 mg, or a little less than two cups of coffee. Depending on who you ask, 1-2 or 1-3 cups per day is considered moderate and safe.

    There's definitely improvement in workouts if you take caffeine about 30 minutes beforehand; not only does it improve your alertness and performance, but it can raise your metabolism and pain threshold as well...which may be a good or bad thing.

    Any more than 300 mg/day, and you start to see adverse effects. Jitteriness. Crashes. Headaches. Sleep disruption. Mood issues. And so forth. Some people are naturally more sensitive to its effects, and must limit their use to under 100 mg/day.

    If you are prone to high blood pressure, keep your caffeine consumption to a minimum. I have to do this. I muddle through without it as much as I can, so when I really do need it (like on deadlines), just half a cup keeps me going for a long time. I don't use it for training, although I do recognize the benefit, and maybe when I shed some more weight, I'll be able to tolerate the pre-workout caffeine hit better.

    Caffeine dependency is simply that you develop a resistance to the caffeine -- it no longer blocks those sleepy hormones -- so you need more and more to feel the same level of alertness that you felt on just one cup before. Eventually, it will simply stop working, and you'd have to go through a withdrawal phase to get back to full effectiveness. Withdrawals affect people differently; some don't feel anything, others get horrible headaches, lethargy, foggy-brain, etc. Taking regular breaks from it will help you avoid resistance, and wil keep its effectiveness with lower doses.

    Hope that helps. There are a TON of articles out there about caffeine; don't just read the ones about weightlifting, read the ones from MayoClinic.com, WebMD, etc. as well, so you get the full picture.

  8. #8
    Colorista
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    Caffeine in moderation

    Forgot to add...If you're just starting out with caffeine, you might want to consider an alternative to coffee: green or oolong tea. Both are great sources of LESS caffeine than coffee, but the quality of the caffeine is a little different; there's less of a crash. Green tea has about 40-50 mg per cup, and oolong (somewhere between green and black tea) has about 70-80 mg. Black tea varies between 80 and 120 mg depending on how it's brewed. Tea also has antioxidants -- the lighter the color, the more antioxidants it has. So, for your soccer concerns, green tea might be the way to go.

    Just don't drink any caffeine at least four hours before going to bed. If you're sensitive, even the trace amounts in decaf coffee could keep you awake.

  9. #9
    gonzo
    Guest

    Caffeine in moderation

    Thanks guys, especially Colorista for your thorough and relevant info.

    This info is leading me to try-out green tea extract prior to exercise. Two tablets tend to amount to 200mg of caffeine. I may also drink an additional daily cup of green tea at a different time of day.

  10. #10

    Caffeine in moderation

    Quote Originally Posted by "AS":ui2z08yc
    Have some caffeine when you feel you need it. My morning isn't complete without my morning coffee...actually I like a good cup of coffee any time in the day.
    Me too. It's not only a must for me before working out, I love having it in the PM as a pick-me-up, or even as dessert. Don't see the harm in it, haven't felt any ill effects from it, either (though I've taken caffeine pills, and THOSE did a # on me). And to be honest, I'm completely dependent on coffee, but there are worse things I could be addicted to. Doesn't bother me.

  11. #11
    AS
    Guest

    Caffeine in moderation

    I'm in the same boat, I love the taste, smell, and pick-me-up from coffee and caffeine probably doesnt have much of an effect on me now, especially before a workout, but it's more of a mental thing. Like you said, there are worse things we could be addicted to.

  12. #12
    Senior Member
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    Caffeine in moderation

    from the literature and my own experience the primary effect of caffeine during a session is a retardation of the sense of fatigue. if you're lifting heavy and doing few(ish) reps, you're probably not going to notice a difference. If you're doing endurance work or high rep activity you might not necessarily perform better in and of itself but it'll be considerably less painful to get the same workouts in with the caffeine than without.

  13. #13
    gonzo
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    Caffeine in moderation

    Quote Originally Posted by "gobbla":rc8gnyqf
    for a workout aid 200mg aprox 10-15min prior to the session. The more you take at other times of the day, the less of a difference it'll make here.

    I don't know anything about the rest of that
    Does that ever make you feel dehydrated?

  14. #14
    AS
    Guest

    Caffeine in moderation

    Just pointing out the obvious, but drink water if you feel dehydrated.

  15. #15
    Administrator Roland Denzel's Avatar
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    Caffeine in moderation

    Once you get used to a level of intake, caffeine stops being a diuretic. Even then, it doesn't really cause all that much more water loss. It's a myth based on a theory.

  16. #16

    Caffeine in moderation

    I used to have daily caffeine but usually in a form of an energy drink in the morning.
    If I slept in of a morning (ie weekend) then I'd wake up with a headache.
    About 2 months ago I decided that I didn't like being a slave to the energy drink and caffeine so I quit cold turkey. About that time I was having real trouble with my neck so didn't feel any extra withdrawl symptoms due to feeling pretty average anyway.
    After a few days I really didn't miss it. Sleep better, wake up refreshed, have the same levels of energy or even higher levels.

    Like most things we think we need, our bodies actually don't need them.
    I have no reasons to start caffeine again.

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