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Is drinking coffee when sick bad?

One of the worst feelings is falling ill, especially due to poor weather conditions. In most cases, people experiencing flu-like symptoms tend to take a hot drink to overcome the illness.

If you are sick, giving up on coffee intake brings a combination of 2 bad experiences as caffeine withdrawal and illness combine into a single terrible feeling.

However, if you are a coffee lover, you should not give up on this habit even if you start feeling ill or become sick. This isn't a ticket to fully recommend the intake of coffee, the reason being that coffee makes you feel relieved when you are low, although sometimes your body might reject this.

Most scientific studies that have been carried out on the subject about coffee and sickness are somewhat barren. However, there is a past study that analyzed the relationship between coffee intake and sickness, whose results showed that it could lead to wakefulness, reduced alertness, and slow psychomotor performance. It concluded that drinking coffee when you have a common cold is necessary since it can reduce the symptoms.

Can coffee drinking help you feel better?

Scientific research shows that coffee makes people feel better even under harsh weather conditions. Caffeinated coffee, as well as decaffeinated coffee, can reduce malaise, which is defined as the wakefulness, reduced alertness, and slower psychomotor performance, which come with a common cold among other types of illnesses.

Is drinking coffee when sick bad?

It's a fact that a cup of coffee every morning will make you fresh and energetic as you start your day. However, if you are sick, you can either decide to take or avoid coffee due to a number of reasons.

Below are the positive and negative effects of taking coffee while you are sick.

Positive effects

red cup with cross sign and coffee beans

Promotes antioxidation

As people age, their body passes through various processes of cellular damage, which can result in illnesses and diseases. The number one cause of cell damage is oxidation. However, taking a cup of coffee when you are sick is essential since it contains high levels of chemical antioxidants that slow or stop the oxidation process from taking place in the body cells. Coffee has a huge percentage of powerful antioxidants. This has made coffee recognizable across the globe and has also made it be classified as a health food.

Increased fiber intake

Although it may sound unrealistic, it's a fact that coffee has approximately 2grams of fiber. Health experts suggest that for an adult to stay healthy, he or she should take between 25-30 grams of fiber every day. Therefore, since the fiber amount in coffee is not that much, taking a cup of coffee will help to restore the proper functioning of the bowel and also reset how the digestive system works.

It's a painkiller

Research shows that coffee, to some extent, helps to relieve pain. A 2007 research paper found out that caffeine in coffee has some properties that reduce the intensity of muscle pain, especially in adults. It blunts pain feeling within the muscles as well as connective tissues. If your sickness makes your body ache, you can drink a cup of coffee so that your pain can be relieved.

Reduces depression

In most cases, when people feel sick, they tend to feel down every time. Some huge illnesses can even lead to depressive behaviors that can even run for some days or weeks. This can result in even a more serious medical problem. Therefore, to prevent the depression that comes as a result of sickness, it's important to drink a cup of coffee so that your spirit and mood can be elevated as you go to bed to sleep.

These are some positive effects of drinking coffee when you are sick.

Negative effects

No sign on cup of coffee

Coffee is acidic

This is the first reason why drinking coffee while sick is not a good idea. When you are ill, drinking coffee causes irritation to the throat, which even makes it more itchy and painful. The same acidity in coffee can also interrupt your stomach, especially if taken in large amounts. Taking coffee when sick can lead to vomiting, abdominal pains, nausea, which is all common, especially when one has flu.

Difficulty to sleep

Taking coffee while sick leads to a lack of proper sleep. Coffee has some substances that make the brain more alert and thus having a hard time to get a sound sleep. Since most sick people spend time while sleeping in order to recover, you are likely to stay awake every time. This means that regardless of your sickness, you should avoid coffee if you want to spend time sleeping.

Weakens the body immune system

Taking coffee while sick is not recommended since it reduces the ability of the body to defend itself against diseases. This comes as a result of the compounds in coffee suppressing the ability of the body to produce its own antibodies and thus making it vulnerable to some infectious diseases.

Most people with a common cold would not wish that to happen. Apart from this, coffee is responsible for releasing a stress hormone called cortisol that can interfere with the proper functioning of the immune system. What normally happens is that large amounts of cortisol affect the heart, which further affects blood sugar levels, cholesterol levels, and triglycerides. All these then suddenly decrease the ability of the body to defend itself against diseases.

Causes dehydration

The diuretic effect of coffee is the number one reason as to why you should not take coffee regardless of your sickness. After taking coffee, you will end up urinating more and hence become dehydrated. Normally, what happens if you become sick is that the temperature in your body increases, meaning that metabolism and other biochemical processes also speed up.

When metabolism is increased, you will breathe faster to ensure the body gets the required amount of oxygen. The quick breathing rate makes a lot of moisture leave the body. This makes a double water loss from your body in addition to vomiting, runny nose, and sweating.


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