How Much Caffeine Should You Drink? 6 Red Flags That May Mean You’re Overdoing It
Too much caffeine can leave you feeling really weird, and while you might think of jittery hands and extreme adrenaline as obvious symptoms, copious amounts of caffeine can actually do a whole lot more to your body. Whether your drink of choice is coffee, green tea, Monster, Red Bull, all of these beverages have the potential to alter your brain chemistry, obstruct your nervous system, and affect your body in ways you'd probably never guess. So, yeah, it's kind of important to know how much caffeine you should drink.
I know it seems a little overdramatic. I mean, what's the harm in sipping a few PSLs here and there, right? Yes, most of us need a couple cups of coffee to get through the day every now and then, but when your caffeine intake goes beyond, say, three cups each day, then it might be time to start checking your habits. Always keep in mind that too much of anything is almost always a recipe for a downfall -- even when it comes to something that's meant to keep you productive. In fact, caffeine can actually bring your body to a point where it is everything but productive.
Here are six red flags that you should absolutely be aware of if you happen to drink a lot of caffeine on the reg.
1. You Get The Shakes
It's when your heart starts to beat way faster than normal, and your fingers tremble uncontrollably. It feels tremendously uncomfortable, and it can give you more physical anxiety than you actually emotionally feel. At that point, you've had too much caffeine.
This actually happened to me once. I drank about four cups of green tea, and, well, let's just say I had to put my head down for multiple intervals throughout my work day -- not very fun.
2. You're Way Too Hyped
This has a lot to do with your central nervous system being on level 10. An overstimulated central nervous system can lead to anxiety, panic attacks, nervousness, insomnia, breathlessness, heart palpitations, fear, an inability to relax, and an inability to sit still.
Such an overactive nervous system can also lead to explosive anger. That may explain things a little if you happen to notice you get a little moody when you drink too much caffeine.
3. You Have To Pee, A Lot
You may be thinking, “Well, duh, of course I'd have to pee if I just chugged multiple cups of liquid.”
But there's way more to it than just that. Coffee is a diuretic, which means that you'd have to urinate even more frequently than you would if you simply drank a few cups of water.
4. You're Really Thirsty
According to the US Department of Health and Human Services Food and Drug Association, increased amounts of caffeine can lead you to become dehydrated, as the fluid is passing through your body at a more frequent pace (again, that's also why you're peeing a lot).
So your body isn't really taking in a lot of that liquid -- it's discarding nearly all of it.
5. You Get Pretty Confused And Disoriented
This one is weird, because I'm sure you drank the coffee to keep your mind alert and focused, yet here you are, getting the total opposite result.
Confusion and disorientation comes from caffeine intoxication, which can also cause seizures for some people.
Yeah, caffeine honestly is nothing to f*ck with, guys.
6. You Get A Major Crash
It's funny because usually, you drink caffeine because you are in a dense state of fatigue and need the pick-me-up. However, if you go a little too overboard on your caffeinated liquid of choice, within a few hours, you will crash. In my opinion, this honestly just defeats the purpose of drinking this stuff in the first place.
This sudden crash happens because, when you feel tired, your brain withholds a chemical called adenosine. Ingesting caffeine blocks adenosine from connecting with the receptors in your brain, so the caffeine wards off fatigue. However, although the adenosine isn't connecting to the receptors, it is still present in your brain.
Therefore, once the caffeine wears off, the built-up adenosine finally does connect with the receptors, and boom. You crash.
Drink wisely, friends!