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Of all the substances humans use to enhance, alter, suppress, and avoid various aspects of our existence, caffeine is one of the most amazing. It is disturbing to realize this you literally can’t function as an adult without a caffeine jolt? Sometimes, sure. But for most of us, caffeine is a relatively harmless lifesaver with very few downsides.
Except when it comes to sleep. Caffeine is nice effective stimulantand it can negatively impact your sleep if you get too much of it. Studies have shown that significant amounts of caffeine even six hours before bed it can make it more difficult to fall asleep and decrease the quality of sleep. For those of us who have trouble sleeping, the solution is usually to stop caffeine at some point in the day, which would be a great strategy, if it weren’t for all the amazing places you find caffeine in these days.
How much is too much?
They were all different, but most humans can consume approx 400 milligramsstuff every single day without measurable damage; for reference, a standard eight-ounce cup of coffee has nearly 100 milligrams of caffeinemost energy drinks are around 70-75 milligrams, tea has nearly 50 milligrams, and colas have about 22 milligrams (there are, of course, examples of each having much more or much less).
When we think of caffeine, we think of the obvious culprits: coffee, tea, soda, chocolate, and anything that uses those things as an ingredient. When it comes to sleep, a few milligrams of caffeine in a cookie or bowl of cereal probably won’t interrupt your sleep, but if you’re having trouble falling or staying asleep, check to see if you’re unintentionally overdosing on caffeine with some of these surprisingly caffeine-containing foods. caffeine. .
Caffeine is often used to amplify the effect of painkillers such as acetaminophen (the main ingredient in Tylenol). The effective dose of caffeine in pain relievers is typically greater than 100 milligrams (although some painkillers that include caffeine use less), so taking a few pills before bed to relieve back stiffness or headaches so you can sleep may actually be counterproductive, since you may be taking the equivalent of a cup of coffee caffeine value.
Some orange sodas and root beers
If you’re anything like me, you grew up thinking the rule of thumb for caffeine and soda was that colas = caffeine, citrus = no caffeine. But, surprise! Some orange-flavored sodas contain caffeine. Sunkist Orange Soda, for example, has 19 milligrams of caffeine per 12 fluid ounces. It’s not a huge dose, but if you have a couple of sodas a few hours before bedtime, it adds up. Similarly, while most root beers are caffeine-free, some brands, such as Barqs, contain about 22 milligrams of caffeine per 12 oz. In other words, it is always worth checking before breaking what can open.
Some flavored waters
If you’re someone who hates drinking plain old water and always opts for a flavoring to spice it up, you might assume there’s no caffeine in sight. And you’re probably right, even though some brands of flavored (and unflavored) water advertise added caffeine, they’re easy enough to avoid. The only way you can stumble in the flavored water arena is when euphemisms are employed. If the name of your flavored water includes terms like energy or boost, double-check the ingredients list.
You can also get a clue from those ingredients just like coffee flavored energy bars typically high in caffeine, flavored waters including coffee or tea in their formulation can pack a punch even if they are not advertised as containing caffeine. For example, flavored water brand AHA has three products that include black or green tea in their formulation, resulting in a dose of about 30 milligrams of caffeine. It’s not a amount of caffeine, but it adds up.
Green tea doesn’t look as serious as black tea, but that doesn’t mean it’s caffeine-free. Your average green tea contains about 25 milligrams of caffeine per eight ounces (Specific types of green tea or formulations using it have varying amounts, ranging from 12 milligrams to 75 milligrams or more). Bottom line: If you’re craving a soothing cup of green tea before bed, double check before brewing.
Despite being a tea, most people don’t associate kombucha with caffeine. But most kombucha contains a small but significant amount of caffeine, between eight and 14 milligrams. It’s probably not enough to ruin your night on its own, but if you’ve already consumed a lot of caffeine throughout the day, it might be enough to push you over the edge. Similarly, if you enjoy a few too many cups before bed, you may find yourself staring at the ceiling for a few hours.
Sleep is essential for good health, so avoiding anything that can inhibit a good night’s sleep is essential. With some products, this requires a bit of detective work.
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