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3 ways coffee wreaks havoc on your immune system

Here's why your morning cuppa is not good for you.

There is a lot that coffee can do for you, lift your mood; make your feel refreshed, active, etc. However, it is also believed that having coffee when you are low or feel sick can help boost your immunity. But the reality is coffee doesn t have any significant effect on your immune system. Well, the warm feeling you feel while sipping your coffee when you are sick can be great, but it doesn t improve your immunity in any way. Traditionally coffee has no effect on one s immunity, while it can be a mood lifter and energise you, it isn t wise to think that it can help build immunity, says Niti Desai, Consultant Nutritionist at Cumballa Hills Hospital, Mumbai. Here are 10 beauty benefits of coffee that you should know.

Here is how coffee hampers your immunity.

1. It triggers the release stress hormones: The caffeine present in coffee isn t good when had in excess and can stimulate the sympathetic nervous system by increasing stress levels. Too much stress is a reason for the release of stress hormones likes cortisol that interferes with the functioning of the immune system. Elevated cortisol is responsible for a number of health issues related to heart and fluctuations in blood sugar, high cholesterol and triglycerides. All of which collective makes your immunity go down. Here are some natural remedies to boost your immunity.

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2. It interferes with the immune cells: High intake of caffeine suppresses antibody production in the body. Caffeine blocks the T cells and B cells in the body to attack foreign bodies to fight infection.

3. It can cause insomnia: In fact, it can have an impact on the brain blocking the neurotransmitter adenosine that is responsible for the production of other neurotransmitters. Caffeine blocks the adenosine receptors in the brain; this makes the brain more alert a reason coffee is your favourite drink to improve productivity. However, this effect is short-lived as the brain produces more adenosine receptors. With more available receptors, the effect of caffeine slows down which makes you sluggish and affect your sleep in the later part of the day. In the long run, it can lead to insomnia. Lack of sleep again raises cortisol levels and suppresses immunity. Here are four breathing techniques that help you sleep better.

What you can do:

Limit your coffee intake to two cups a day. In fact, in low amounts caffeine can help boost immunity. Low amounts of caffeine can improve the function of the spleen and thymus both of which play an important role in supporting the immune functions of the body.

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Reference:

Haque, M. R., Ansari, S. H., & Rashikh, A. (2013). Coffea arabica Seed Extract Stimulate the Cellular Immune Function and Cyclophosphamide-induced Immunosuppression in Mice. Iranian journal of pharmaceutical research: IJPR,12(1), 101.

1: Melamed I, Kark JD, Spirer Z. Coffee and the immune system. Int J Immunopharmacol. 1990;12(1):129-34. PubMed PMID: 2303315.

1: Horrigan LA, Kelly JP, Connor TJ. Immunomodulatory effects of caffeine: friend or foe? Pharmacol Ther. 2006 Sep;111(3):877-92. Epub 2006 Mar 15. Review. PubMed PMID: 16540173.

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