Technically, any liquid intended for drinking is a beverage so named by a word derived from French and Latin verbs meaning ‘to drink.’ Healthy beverages are beverages with health benefits that attribute by its nutritional value. The use of healthy beverage for promoting health and relieving symptom is as old as the practice of medicine.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

What exactly is caffeine?

Caffeine is a chemical alkaloid with central nervous system stimulant properties. It is a colorless, somewhat bitter substance that is found in coffee, tea, chocolate and cola. It is also in many over- the-counter medicines and in many diet/weight loss supplements. It is considered a psychoactive drug.

It has benefits and it has side effects. It helps keep us alert. It stimulates the central nervous system. Some say it improves physical and mental performance. It has diuretic activity.

Moreover, caffeine produces a feeling of well being, increased energy, increase attention, concentration, desire to socialize and motivation for work.

Some studies list is as a mood elevator, and a pain reliever. Because of the increased alertness levels of those who consume caffeine, there has been improved performance in activities such as test-taking, driving, flying and problem solving.

These characteristic include both caffeine’s ability to improve people’s moods, self-confidence and energy and what researchers call ability to act as a reinforce.

There are side effects of caffeine though. Those are insomnia, nervousness, increased tension and anxiety-panic attacks, just from drinking the amount of 300 mg. The amount that causes these side effects vary from individual to individual, however, children seem to have a lower tolerance of it because of their lower body weight.

The Food and Drug Administration advises pregnant women to avoid it altogether. Mother of premature babies and babies with cardiac problems should limit caffeine intake and should report what they do consume to baby’s pediatric care provider.

There was a report on a series of patients presenting a variety of symptoms he attributed to the use of coffee, or tea , concluding that eliminating caffeine from the diets could be beneficial.

However, it was recommended that who terminated the caffeine use abruptly were at risk for developing a severe headache, fatigue, sleepiness, mood disturbance or impaired concentration. Coffee consumption should be reduce gradually over a week or more.

Caffeine is found un coffee beans, tea leaves, and cacao among other plants.
What exactly is caffeine?
Updated 25-5-2011

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