For me, coffee is like fuel, especially when I’ve got tons of work to do. Coffee can help me stay awake, focused, and productive, with the endless chores I’ve got to do.
However, I sometimes hear people complaining that coffee doesn’t give them this stimulating effect, and surprisingly makes them tired and sleepy.
Let’s find out how coffee can make anyone tired? Well, there are some reasons behind feeling sleepy after sipping a cup of coffee. Read on to find out what they are!
Why Does Coffee Make You Sleepy?
In order for caffeine to work out its magical effect on your brain, it has to manipulate some of the chemical processes found inside your body.
This manipulation leads to different impacts on your body after the coffee effect wears off – Cone vs Basket Filter
The Build-Up of Adenosine
Caffeine increases the-mental alertness levels, through interacting with specific chemical processes in the human mind, this chemical is called “Adenosine“. And it’s responsible for regulating the sleeping/waking cycles.
But once the alertness levels are reduced again, you might feel tired afterward. Adenosine limits the brain stimulation, as it blocks other neurotransmitters that alert the brain.
The structure of the caffeine molecules is similar to adenosine. So, what it really does is that it stops the adenosine from reaching the brain, to keep you awake and focused.
While all of this doesn’t negatively impact your physical health. But preventing the adenosine from reaching the brain, keeps it building up. And once the caffeine effects fade off, the increased amount of adenosine suddenly reaches the brain. Causing you to feel tired and sleepy.
Furthermore, Caffeine changes some other chemical processes in the brain, to give you this instant focus you need. In addition to preventing the reception of adenosine, it triggers your brain to produce a significant amount of adrenaline.
This usually happens to people who drink lots of coffee on a daily basis. The increased consumption of caffeine can lead to increasing the neuron firing, which notifies the pituitary gland.
The pituitary gland reacts by releasing hormones responsible for activating the adrenal glands, resulting in high adrenaline levels in the body. The increased adrenaline levels lead to high blood pressure and an accelerated heart rate for a while.
Once you pass this stage, the levels of adrenaline will drop again causing you to feel exhausted.
Coffee is a diuretic substance; this means it makes you need to urinate more than usual. The problem here is that urination makes you lose body water, which thickens your blood and slows the blood movement through the veins and arteries.
This causes your body to receive less oxygen, leading you to feel sluggish afterward. Usually, this will result in you consuming more coffee to stay productive, but it makes you enter a vicious dehydrating cycle leading you to feel exhausted and sleepy.
Plus, Coffee is already a vasoconstrictor. This means it contributes to narrowing down the veins and arteries and making it more difficult for the thick blood to float through them.
In addition to that, the origin and material of the coffee have different effects. There are lots of cheap coffee sold in different places.
Cheap coffee means a blend of low-quality coffee beans that might contain high levels of mycotoxins. When the brain gets exposed to these toxins, it can lead to drowsiness and fatigue.
Your lifestyle has a significant impact on the effects of caffeine on your body. For example, having high-stress levels, and combining that with coffee to keep the brain focused.
It can actually cause an increased level of stress. And make the person feel overwhelmed most of the day.
Also, the type of food the person eats, and the timing of the last meal, all create different effects of caffeine on the human body.
Caffeine Provides Energy – Why Does It Not Always Work in Coffee?
Yes, Caffeine definitely boosts your energy and makes you more focused and productive. But unfortunately, it doesn’t have the same effects on all people.
The factors that change the effects of caffeine on your body are many. Like the number of cups you drink per day, the way your body digests caffeine, and other similar factors.
Recent research suggests that not all people metabolize caffeine in the same way. According to Kristin Kirkpatrick, R.D., Cleveland Clinic Manager of Wellness Nutrition Services, there are two main types of individuals when it comes to metabolizing caffeine.
The first type is fast metabolizers, while the second type is slow metabolizers. Determining how fast or slow an individual’s body breaks down caffeine, can be done through a nutrients test.
This test estimates the variants of a certain gene, to know the real effects of caffeine on your body. And be able to recognize whether it actually stimulates your brain, or doesn’t benefit you at all.
Moreover, the personal lifestyle of the individual similarly contributes to the effects of caffeine on the human body.
For instance, the caffeine substance already exists in other forms than coffee, such as energy drinks, soft beverages, and even some pain killers and medicines consist of caffeine.
Therefore, you might not accurately measure your actual intake of the substance, if you only measure it according to the number of cups you had sipped. So, to get the desired effects of drinking coffee, you have to moderate the amount of caffeine that your body consumes daily according to your diet.
Can Coffee Help You Sleep?
There are some claims that drinking coffee right before bed doesn’t affect the quality of the sleep you have. Surprisingly, there is no evidence that coffee can cause insomnia or sleep troubles. As opposed to nicotine and alcohol.
On the other hand, there’s no evidence that coffee can help you fall asleep, or sleep better through the night. studies state that people react to caffeine varies, while some can strongly be affected by the substance, others can have no effects at all.
This is why it’s better to avoid drinking coffee at night if your body is sensitive to caffeine.
Does Sugar in Coffee Give More Energy or Cause More Tiredness?
Sugar, creamer, and sugary milk, all are ingredients that enhance the taste of your coffee, making it more delicious and enjoyable.
Unfortunately, these sugar-loaded ingredients can lead to tiredness and fatigue later on. That’s beside the other negative health effects they have on the body, like diabetes and obesity.
The reason behind this is that sugar is processed much faster than caffeine. Sugar provides you with high energy levels, but as soon as its effect wears off, it deprives you of energy – Does sugar negate the effects of caffeine in coffee or does it only add calories?
If your coffee consists of too much sugar or sugar substance, such as creamer. Then this feeling of tiredness can be due to the sugar rush. It’s also, due to the crash process happening inside your system.
Moreover, researchers suggest that caffeine can raise the levels of blood sugar in the body, which impacts glucose metabolism. Making people with high blood sugar feel exhausted until the level of blood sugar gets back to normal.
How Can You Avoid Getting Tired from Drinking Coffee?
To avoid getting tired from coffee, here are a few tips to reduce this unwanted effect.
- Consider moderating the coffee intake you consume regularly.
- Limit yourself to 400 mg of caffeine per day, which is almost 3 or 4 cups of coffee (How Many Coffee Beans Are in a Cup of Coffee?).
- Try to avoid sugary ingredients, such as too much sugar, creamers, and sweetened milk.
- Most importantly, drink a cup of water with or after each cup of coffee you consume.
- Also, make sure to drink plenty of water around the clock to avoid dehydration.
I can now clearly say that coffee indeed causes some people to feel sleepy or tired. But what actually happens, is that your body is returning to its status prior to consuming caffeine. Plus, this isn’t the direct effects of caffeine only.
If drinking coffee makes you feel tired, you have to reconsider your overall lifestyle, to understand what contributes to creating this problem. Your eating habits, hydration, and stress levels, all can cause you to feel tired after drinking coffee.
Finally, make sure you moderate your coffee intake, to maintain having the magical effects of coffee on your brain. And don’t forget to drink at least a cup of water after your coffee, to keep your body hydrated, and avoid feeling tired afterward.