Coffee Makes the World Go Around… And Your Belly!

I love coffee!  Lattes and cappuccinos are very popular coffees these days.  But are they made with calorie-laden full-fat milk? A regular sized latte made with full fat milk could contain over 145 calories and even skinny versions contain more calories than you might think – about 80 calories for a regular size. 

Do you – like me – love to have your coffee with a cheeky chocy-cookie or mouth-watering muffin?  But have you stopped considered just how many calories are coming from your morning trips to the coffee shop?

It is all too easy to rack up over 1000 calories in one afternoon’s cappuccino and a frosty-covered muffin. 

But it’s not just those extra hidden calories – there is also the issue of excessive caffeine…

How many times have you said your yourself “I NEED coffee NOW!”

Often the foods and drinks we chose in times of stress contain toxins such as caffeine and alcohol. Effectively, these ‘rob’ the body of essential nutrients that the body actually needs more of during times of stress. 

Coffee for instance, stops the body absorbing magnesium, a key nutrient, which helps the body balance acid and alkaline and when low leads to tiredness and fatigue. 

So, if you’re fuelling with bucket-loads of coffee to get you though the day you’ll also be stimulating more adrenaline and cortisol, hormones which drive cravings for rich, sugary foods like chocolate… which, guess what, also contains caffeine – an endless vicious cycle of stress and cravings.

Stress-Busting Tip

Boost your magnesium levels with whole-grains, nuts and green vegetables. Ditch the coffee and replace that chocolate muffin with a handful of nuts.

How about having a nice cup of tea with a slice of lemon instead of those milky coffees? And save the cookie or muffin to enjoy on a VERY special occasion.

Are some foods and drinks stopping you getting a good night’s sleep?

Lack of sleep has been linked to weight gain and other health problems but is there anything that we eat and drink that might be stopping us from getting a good night’s rest?

It’s well known that caffeine, found naturally in tea, coffee, and chocolate and added to some fizzy drinks, can help you keep alert and aids concentration during the day.  But overdoing the caffeine can affect sleep.

It’s a stimulant that works by blocking the action of hormones in the brain that would normally make us feel sleepy. This has the effect of increasing alertness and can last for several hours.  Some people find this affects their sleep, and others may not.

It will depend on the speed at which the body removes the caffeine, and this varies from person to person. It will also depend on how used to the caffeine a person is: for instance, someone drank several cups of coffee regularly; it may not affect their sleep as much as someone who only occasionally drinks a cup.

As guide try to have no more than 400 mg of caffeine a day. That is about the amount of caffeine found in 4 small cups of regular coffee. Caffeine can stay in your system for up to eight hours.

Switch to decaffeinated drinks, unsweetened herbal tea or water about 4 hours before you go to bed.

Cut the Caffeine

Caffeine withdrawal, however, can cause nasty, thumping headaches, so cut it down slowly over one or two weeks rather than going cold turkey – the last thing you want to do is take an over-the-counter headache remedy as many contain…you guessed it…caffeine!