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Caffeine and Detox Diets: Can you consume it?

As you prepare for a detox diet, you need to take stock of the things you will cut out of your diet. Detox diets work by eliminating foods and drinks that bring toxicity into the body. It can be easy to overlook those things that are part of your daily rituals like your morning coffee. 

Caffeine and detox are things you need to think about ahead of time. The fact is, caffeine is a toxin, and caffeine and detox will not work well together. Among the first things to remove from your daily intake will be those things you likely consume out of habit, and many of us start each day with a strong cup of coffee. 

There are some good reasons why caffeine and detox do not work well together. We will address these below. For now, understand that caffeine and detox are opposed to your final goals. The primary goal of a detox diet is to stop the intake of toxins. Beyond that, you need to get your organ systems working in top shape again. Since caffeine and detox prevent both of these goals, you will need to address them accordingly.

What exactly is caffeine? How does caffeine affect the body? And how may caffeine impact your detox diet? These are the important questions this guide will answer. 

What is caffeine?

Caffeine is a stimulant that affects the central nervous system. Chemically, caffeine is a psychoactive drug, however, it is legal and completely unregulated in nearly all parts of the world. 

Caffeine works by blocking a chemical called adenosine which causes drowsiness. When caffeine blocks the neuro-receptors for adenosine it then stimulates the autonomic nervous system. 

Caffeine is a chemical alkaloid that is related to the same chemical bases that form deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) and ribonucleic acid (RNA). It is found in the seeds, nuts, and leaves of numerous plants around the world. The most prominent source of caffeine in the United States is coffee. American adults consume an average of 164 mg of caffeine a day. 

What should be clear in this is that caffeine is a complex chemical that impacts the body, brain, and central nervous system in profound ways. We tend not to see caffeine as a toxin since it is a common part of adult life. But caffeine is a powerful drug and works like any other toxin in the body to cause serious adverse effects and to put a strain on the liver for natural detox mechanisms. 


How does caffeine work on your body?

As soon as you consume caffeine it is almost immediately absorbed in the gut and makes its way into the bloodstream. Through the bloodstream, caffeine travels to the liver where it is broken down into other compounds that affect different organs in different ways. The main effects of caffeine are on the brain. Caffeine blocks the receptors for the neurotransmitter adenosine. Adenosine makes you feel tired. By blocking the receptors, you will feel more awake and alert. 

Caffeine can also increase blood adrenaline levels which cause the brain to release more dopamine and norepinephrine. This causes the caffeine “buzz” so many people have come to love. This function is also what makes some people cranky when they consume too much caffeine. 

Caffeine is extremely strong. For example, one cup of coffee can take as little as 20 minutes to reach the bloodstream and as little as one hour to reach full impact on the body. 

Caffeine also impacts your stomach. Caffeine increases the levels of acid in your stomach and may cause heartburn or upset stomach. People who experience acid reflux or people with ulcers will experience serious problems and pain from the effects of caffeine. 

Caffeine travels from your stomach to your circulatory system quickly. Caffeine can reach maximum levels in the bloodstream within two hours. For this reason, caffeine can cause your blood pressure to increase for a short time. 

The increase in blood pressure from caffeine is thought to be the result of a combined effect of increased adrenaline and a temporary block of a hormone that increases the size of your arteries. For people who have normal blood pressure, this is not a problem. 

For people with hypertension or high blood pressure, this temporary spike in blood pressure can be dangerous. The effects of caffeine on people with high blood pressure can contribute to heart problems. 

During a detox, the effects of caffeine on the circulatory system and blood pressure may be more pronounced. 

Caffeine can also impact the skeletal and muscular systems. If you consume large amounts of caffeine it can interfere with the absorption and metabolism of calcium., which can contribute to soft bones, or osteoporosis. 

Too much caffeine can also cause your muscles to twitch. 

Caffeine can also affect the reproductive system. Caffeine can travel within the bloodstream and cross over to the placenta in women who are pregnant. Since caffeine is such a powerful stimulant, the effects of caffeine can be passed over to a developing fetus. This can inhibit fetal growth. 

Too much caffeine while pregnant can inhibit fetal growth sufficiently to cause miscarriage. Generally, doctors recommend eliminating caffeine during pregnancy.   

Caffeine does not stay in your body for long. For this reason, it gets processed by your liver and kidneys quickly and exits the body through urine. This is why coffee often causes increased urination. These effects put pressure on your liver, kidneys, and urinary tract. 

Consuming too much caffeine has lasting effects. The long-term effects of caffeine can include:

  • anxiety
  • difficulty sleeping
  • ulcers
  • osteoporosis in post-menopausal women
  • irritability and headaches
  • dizziness and ringing in the ears
  • muscle tremor
  • weakness and fatigue
  • rapid heart rate and quickened breathing rate
  • poor appetite, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea
  • increased thirst, frequent urination, or increased urine volume
  • irregular heart rate or rhythm
  • low blood pressure with faintness or falls
  • seizures, confusion, or delirium.

It should be apparent that caffeine affects virtually the entire body in one way or another. Since the purpose of a detox diet is to reverse nearly all the effects of toxins, including caffeine, we should cut out all caffeine during a detox. 

Can you drink caffeine during a detox diet?

Caffeine interferes with the body’s natural detoxification processes. Caffeine can interfere with metabolic processes that eliminate many toxins. The effects of caffeine are particularly pronounced in the liver where toxins are naturally processed and removed. 

Because caffeine is such a powerful stimulant, it can also increase levels of stress hormone which presents another level of toxicity in the body. Stress hormones like cortisol can increase insulin levels. 

Increases in stress hormones also lead to increased inflammation which is one of the chronic problems you are trying to reduce through the detox diet. What is more, the increase in adrenaline that comes with caffeine presents yet another toxic problem for the liver to deal with. 

Overall, caffeine during a detox is counterproductive. Caffeine is a toxin in itself. Caffeine also leads to increases in other forms of toxicity. All of this defeats the purpose of a detox diet. 

Side effects of caffeine while detoxing

The main side effects of caffeine while detoxing will be an increase in the intensity and severity of the effects of caffeine. 

Since your caloric intake will be greatly restricted, there will be little to balance the effects of caffeine. You may find that drinking coffee or other caffeinated beverages during a detox to be intolerable. 

The stimulant effects of caffeine will be far more intense while detoxing. You may find that that caffeine while on a detox diet leads to anxiety and possibly the shakes. 

One of the main chemical goals of a detox diet is to increase alkaline substances in your body. Alkalinity helps with the detox process. Since caffeine stimulates and increases the levels of acid in your stomach, caffeine during a detox may lead to a severe upset stomach. 

Still more, since there will be little coming into your stream to directly buffer the effects of caffeine on your metabolism, the increases in stress hormones and the direct load on your liver will also be more pronounced. 

You may feel stomach upset, including things like acid reflux. Intestinal distress may also increase if you consume caffeine during a detox diet. 

The best thing to do is to slowly taper your caffeine intake before you start a detox diet. Some people experience withdrawal symptoms when they abruptly stop drinking caffeinated beverages. These may include irritability and headaches.

If you regularly drink caffeinated beverages like coffee, start tapering your caffeine intake about a week to ten days before you begin your detox diet.  

Caffeine and detox FAQs

What is caffeine? 

Caffeine is a stimulant that affects the central nervous system. Chemically, caffeine is a psychoactive drug, however, it is legal and completely unregulated in nearly all parts of the world. 

How does caffeine work?

Caffeine works by blocking a chemical called adenosine which causes drowsiness. When caffeine blocks the neuro-receptors for adenosine it then stimulates the autonomic nervous system. 

What parts of the body are affected by caffeine? 

Caffeine primarily works on the brain, but it also impacts the stomach, nervous system, liver, and kidneys. 

Does caffeine interfere with a detox diet? 

Caffeine interferes with the body's natural detoxification processes. Caffeine can interfere with metabolic processes that eliminate many toxins. The effects of caffeine are particularly pronounced in the liver where toxins are naturally processed and removed. 

What are the side effects of caffeine while detoxing? 

The main side effects of caffeine while detoxing will be an increase in the intensity and severity of the effects of caffeine. Since your caloric intake will be greatly restricted, there will be little to balance the effects of caffeine. You may find that drinking coffee or other caffeinated beverages during detox to be intolerable. 

Should I consume caffeine while on a detox diet? 

The short answer to this is no. Caffeine will interfere with a detox diet, and it will likely make you feel ill during a detox diet. 

Spartan Detox plans

There are plenty of detox plans available. A quick search will turn up all kinds of options. The most important thing to keep in mind for a detox diet is that you get the right combination of detox elements and nutrition. This is why a proven detox plan such as those available from Spartan Detox is the best choice. 

The best detox diet plan available is the Spartan Detox Plan. Spartan offers several plans designed to meet your specific needs. Whether your goal is to lose weight or to bolster your immune system, Spartan Detox provides plans that include juices and smoothies that will help you meet your goals. 

Spartan Detox Plans are made from natural juices and smoothies are prepared every day using the best quality fruits outdoors offering an exceptional taste and drink experience that will help your body feel energetic. 

Spartan Detox also provides support through your detox programs. 

Conclusion

In considering a detox diet, I think all of us understand that we will need to cut many things out of our diet that we are used to eating and drinking. What many of us tend to overlook are those things that are more of a daily habit. 

The daily cup of coffee (or more), tea, or soda may seem like something we will not need to consider as we contemplate a detox diet. But caffeine is a toxin in itself. Even a simple cup of coffee in the morning can contribute significantly to the toxic load our bodies need to process. 

What is more, caffeine can lead to an increase in other toxins simply because of the way it affects the body. Since caffeine will cause an increase in stress hormones, adrenaline, and acidity, it will increase toxicity while you are working to eliminate toxicity.

The bottom line on caffeine is that you should cut out all caffeinated drinks while you are doing a detox diet. Besides the toxic load that caffeine can produce in your body, drinking caffeinated products while on a detox diet will likely make you feel bad.  

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