Caffeine: Why coffee sometimes makes you tired instead of awake

Caffeine: Why coffee sometimes makes you tired instead of awake

The popular caffeinated drink does not always make you fit and active, it is also quite possible to feel tired after a cup of coffee. We explain to you what reasons there may be when coffee does not wake you up.

Tired after coffee: these reasons are possible

For many people, a cup of coffee in the morning is a fixed ritual and a kind of magic drink that is supposed to help them start the day awake and focused. At lunchtime it should help to be fit for the upcoming meeting, and in the afternoon it should prevent the impending performance slump. But this does not always work out as hoped. On some days the opposite seems to happen. This can be due to the following reasons:

Insufficient sleep

The caffeine in coffee only has the desired effect if you get enough sleep . Unfortunately, the best and strongest coffee won’t help if you don’t allow your body enough rest and relaxation. 

  • Studies have shown that three consecutive nights with less than five hours of sleep are enough to wipe out the effects of coffee.
  • Insufficient sleep can even put the body into a kind of “intoxicated state” which, like alcohol, has a negative effect on physical and mental abilities and interferes with everyday life.
  • Seven to eight hours of sleep is recommended.

Not enough water

In addition to getting enough sleep, it is important to drink enough water . 

  • Whether coffee removes water from the body and dries it out is still controversial. Regardless, it is clear that caffeine can only develop its stimulating effect on the brain if the body is supplied with sufficient fluids.
  • Coffee has a diuretic effect and can bring the body’s fluid balance out of balance. This can put a lot of stress on the circulatory system.
  • It is therefore important to drink enough water throughout the day. We recommend a glass of water with every cup of coffee.

At the wrong time of day

What time of day you have coffee also plays a role. 

  • This is where cortisol comes into play, a stress hormone that regulates blood sugar levels and ensures that the body has sufficient energy available when needed. In a sense, when you drink coffee, cortisol prevents the caffeine from being absorbed to protect the body.
  • The concentration of the stress hormone is higher at certain times of the day, for example shortly after getting up, because the metabolism is stimulated in sunlight.
  • About two hours after getting up, however, the cortisol level drops again. This would be the ideal time for a coffee.
  • The times of day around 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. are also recommended. You should avoid coffee three hours before bed to prevent sleep problems .

In connection with sweets

In addition to the right time of day, it is also crucial in combination with which foods coffee is consumed. The cup of coffee is very popular in connection with something sweet, such as a piece of cake, pastry or chocolate. 

  • Unfortunately, the brown hot drink loses its invigorating effect as a result. The sugar contained in desserts causes the insulin level to rise and leads to what is known as ” hypoglycemia “.
  • The consequences are tiredness, difficulty concentrating or cravings. Inner restlessness, nausea, sweating or a racing heart can also occur.
  • Therefore, it is best to enjoy your cup of coffee straight or with a hearty meal.
Tired after coffee – the popular hot drink doesn’t always wake you up.(Image: Pexels)

How Much Coffee is Healthy?

If you consume your coffee without milk and sugar, it will be free of fat and calories. Furthermore, it has a diuretic and appetite suppressant. The antioxidants contained (according to a study four times as much as in green tea) prevent heart attacks. They also reduce the effects of free radicals and thus protect against cancer. However, here too the motto is: in moderation, not in masses. Four cups of coffee a day are considered safe and are a good guideline.

what happens to your body when you drink too much coffee.