The Connection Between Sleep and Caffeine

Caffeine is not just part of your morning coffee. While a cup of joe in the morning is a part of the morning routine for many people, there is so much more to caffeine that you may not know, and believe it or not, there are many ways in that it can affect your sleep cycle.

The effects of caffeine on the body

Caffeine is a natural stimulant that is used in many food and beverages, including coffee, tea, energy drinks, sodas, and the occasional chocolate bar and nuts, though the amount of caffeine in the latter two can be extremely small and cause little to no effects. Depending on how much caffeine is in the product you are consuming, it can cause you to feel awake and alert, with the maximum effects occurring around 30-60 minutes after consumption. After that, caffeine is absorbed by your body and can stick around for 4-6 hours.

Most people like to have a caffeinated beverage to stay awake and alert, especially in the mornings. There is nothing wrong with that at all as long as you don’t overdo it. Too much caffeine can actually cause you to feel sleepy and have the opposite effect. And don’t forget that everyone’s limit for caffeine is different depending on many factors such as age, body weight, medical history, and personal tolerance.   

How your sleep cycle can be affected by caffeine

Caffeine has been known to interfere with your circadian rhythm, which is what regulates your body’s sleep cycle. Caffeine has been known to delay the onset of sleep if you consume too much too close to bedtime, as the effects can linger in your body for up to 6 hours after consumption. If you have ever experienced insomnia from having too much coffee too close to bedtime, then you will also know that this can cause you to feel overtired and sluggish the following day.

For this reason, many experts don’t recommend that you consume any caffeinated beverages for several hours before bedtime. If you want to consume a beverage before bedtime, try having herbal tea or a small glass of water instead.

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