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Walking Quiz
Which of the following in NOT a direct benefit of a regular walking regimen?
 
 
 
 
H
omeopathy
 

Chocolate milk 2-7 Anacin, max. strength 32

Milk chocolate (l oz.) l-l5 Excedrin 65

l pc. cake & frosting l6 Vanquish 33

Dark chocolate (l oz.) 5-35 Cope 32

Soft Drinks (l2 oz.) Cold Tablets

Coca-Cola 45 Dristan 16

Pepsi 4l Coryban-D l0 30

Ginger ale, root beer 0 Kolephrin 65

Soda, seltzer 0 Triaminicin 30

(As cited in Are coffee, cold tablets and chocolate innocuous or is their caffeine hazardous to your patients' health ? Amer. J. Nursing, Apr. l986, pp. 423-5.)

I love my lattes! Why should I give them up? Considerable research has been done, particularly in recent years, on the hazardous health effects of caffeine. Read this and see if it makes you want to reconsider your caffeine habit.

Nervous system: Caffeine is indisputably a central nervous system stimulant and crosses the blood/brain barrier quite readily. Ingestion of 85 to 250 mg of caffeine (about 2 cups of coffee) revs up your nervous system, may allow you to think more clearly and rapidly, and reduces drowsiness and fatigue. As the dosage increases, you may also experience nervousness, restlessness, insomnia, tremors, and overall heightened sensitivity. A fascinating American Journal of Psychiatry aricle called Anxiety or Caffeinism: A Diagnostic Dilemma recounts the story of a 37 year-old Army colonel who complained of a two-year history of "chronic anxiety" including shakiness, apprehension about job performance, butterflies in his stomach, restless- ness, frequent episodes of diarrhea or loose stools, and difficulty falling and re- maining asleep. Three medical workups had found nothing. The fourth doctor, a psychiatrist, thought to ask him about his caffeine intake. He reported drinking at least 8 to l4 cups of coffee a day ("My coffeepot is a permanent fixture on my desk.") He also frequently drank hot chocolate at bedtime to relax and drank 3 to 4 cokes a day. His total caffeine intake was approximately l800 mg. per day! All of his symptoms were relieved after quitting caffeine and returned again when he briefly reintroduced the caffeine as a challenge.

Blood pressure: Blood pressure becomes elevated within 2 hours after caffeine ingestion and remains high for up to 3 hours.For those who ingest caffeine throughout the day, this means your blood pressure is continually higher than it should be.

Heart disease: Several studies have found that people who drink 6 or more cups of coffee a day are nearly twice as likely to suffer from a heart attack and those drinking l to 5 cups a day increase their risk by a factor of l.6.

Peptic ulcer: Since caffeine-containing beverages, coffee in particular, are known to be acidic, caffeine ingestion may cause or aggravate ulcers and the accompanying symptoms of heartburn and acid indigestion.

Psychiatric illness: When decaffeinated coffee was substituted for regular coffee for 3 weeks on a psychiatric ward, hostility, suspicion, anxiety, and irritability decreased, then returned again when caffeinated coffee was reintroduced.

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About The Author
Judyth Reichenberg-Ullman, ND, DHANP, MSW is a licensed naturopathic physician board certified in homeopathic medicine. She graduated with a degree in ...more
 
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Disclaimer: The information provided on HealthWorld Online is for educational purposes only and IS NOT intended as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek professional medical advice from your physician or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.