Can coffee cause nausea? (3 Reasons)

In this brief guide, we will answer the question, can coffee cause nausea? We will discuss the reasons that could cause you to have nausea and other similar conditions. We will also discuss the safe limits of coffee for different individuals.

Can coffee cause nausea?

Coffee can cause nausea owing to either one of three or all reasons mentioned. It could be either because coffee has a stimulating or dehydrating effect, the abdominal stress of coffee. 

  1. Abdominal stress

Coffee irritates the stomach lining and causes discomfort. As an acidic beverage, it can damage the lining of the stomach and causes inflammation.

 It is especially advised not to drink coffee on an empty stomach because it overworks the digestive system. The boosted nervous system affects the colons and GI tract, causing a person to experience stomach discomfort. 

  1. Stimulating effect

 Cortisol or the stress hormone is released which, causes an imbalance in the body coupled with a diuretic effect, water from blood shifts to the digestive system which, makes you feel nauseous. 

Caffeine stimulates the nervous system by producing a hormone called adrenaline. Different people will react to caffeine in different ways, some might experience nausea as a side effect.

Besides health and age, even genetic makeup can affect how a person reacts to caffeine. The enzymes which break down the caffeine in the liver can vary and, so can the neuroreceptors which respond to caffeine. The above factors can make the safe or recommended dose vary from one person to another.

If the stimulating effect is too rigorous for your body, you may experience an increased pulse rate, jitters, along nausea.

  1. Dehydrating effect

Dehydration can also cause nausea. Caffeine and stimulating beverages have a dehydrating effect which is not a problem unless you consume more than 4 cups or drink insufficient water. 

Caffeine is an anti-diuretic which is the reason coffee makes you urinate frequently. As the body gets rid of sodium, it takes water with it, thus making your kidneys overwork. Caffeine alone is not a problem; however, drinking insufficient water can be.

An adult must drink at least 8 glasses of water in a day. We also advise you to have a habit of drinking water instead of coffee first thing in the morning to replenish your body and start a healthy day.

Nausea is an inevitable symptom during the early stages of pregnancy. If you are pregnant, try to limit coffee for at least 12 weeks. Caffeine causes elevated heart rate and blood pressure and can make its way to the baby. 

How to prevent coffee from making you nauseous?

1.Choose a dark roast

Dark roast has a lower acid content, which helps to prevent nausea afterward. It also produces compounds that are not detrimental to the stomach.

2.Do not add Artificial or Zero-calorie Sweetener

The sweeteners agitate the gut bacteria and make you nauseous; even worse cause diarrhea. Artificial sweeteners such as mannitol and sorbitol have an osmotic effect in the gut, which forces water and electrolytes out of the body.

3. Avoid Non-dairy, Low-fat, and Artificial Creamers

Coffee creamers have high fructose corn syrup, hydrogenated oils, and thickeners which can cause nausea and other related conditions. Try to use natural cream or milk to prevent queasiness after drinking coffee; calcium from dairy will help to offset gastric issues.

Some Healthy Coffee habits:

  • Drink plenty of water to stay hydrated and, do not drink coffee on an empty stomach.
  • Do not drink coffee as soon as you wake up. The cortisol hormone peaks after a person wake up. If you are prone to GIT issues, try to delay your morning cup and have a bite before you do.
  • Do not drastically reduce your coffee intake to avoid withdrawal symptoms. Gradually decrease your caffeine intake to prevent symptoms that could include nausea, nervousness, and headache.
  • Coffee is good for your health; however, the ingredient that we like to add to them is not. Therefore, try to enjoy coffee in its purest form; black coffee. Remember not to add any artificial sweeteners.
  • Try to avoid non-habitual and occasional caffeine from coffee, soda, and energy drinks. A condition called caffeinism causes nausea, jitteriness, and light-headedness in individuals who are not accustomed to caffeine. Caffeinism refers to toxicity caused by caffeine; therefore, it is advised to reduce or eliminate your usual coffee if you get it from another source.
  • If you are lactose intolerant and cow milk and cream cause you GIT stress, you need to eliminate or replace your dairy ingredients. You can use plant-based milk such as almond milk or soy milk.

In this brief guide, we answered the question, can coffee cause nausea? We discussed the reasons that could cause you to have nausea and other similar conditions. We also discussed the safe limits of coffee for different individuals.

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Hi, I am Charlotte, I love cooking and in my previous life, I was a chef. I bring some of my experience to the recipes on this hub and answer your food questions.