Xanthines, found in coffee, tea, cola and chocolate, influence your stomach! They are stimulating substances that chase your morning tiredness. The most known are caffeine and theobromine.
Caffeine and theobromine make you more alert. They raise your heart rate and relax your smooth muscles. Your morning coffee spikes up your blood circulation by relaxing the tiny muscles in your blood vessels.
As a result, your body is pulled out of its lazy chair. With a pumping heart and open blood vessels inside your muscles, your body is in fact getting prepared to run or fight.
The refreshing effect of caffeine has an important downside on your stomach valve. This valve is in fact a tight circular muscle that fits perfectly around the top of your stomach. Caffeine and theobromine weaken this muscle, making it easier for stomach content to escape up to your throat, causing acid reflux and heartburn.
Another problem with tea, coffee and chocolate is that they contain a lot of biogenic amines (tyramine, histamine,...) . If you have histamine intolerance, these substances can cause high histamine blood levels and cause allergy-like symptoms and acid reflux.
Some people drink green or white tea because they think it's beneficial for their stomach. Think again! Black tea, white, oolong or green tea all come from the same plant, called Camellia Sinensis. Tea leaves are left to dry after plucking. The longer they are left to dry, the darker and stronger the tea becomes.
Black tea is fully “oxidized” and contains therefore the most caffeine. White tea and green tea contain only a little amount of caffeine. Less harmful if you have heartburn, but not beneficial.
Herbal teas or fruit teas don't contain any xanthine because they are not made of tea leaves. Various ingredients like herbs, flowers or fruits are available and they are all free from xanthine. Herbal teas such as camommillia or verbena can be used as a remedy to stop acid reflux.
You are not alone! Millions of people wake up with a cup of coffee. Coffee-drinkers throughout the world appreciate the refreshing effect to start their day with.
With more than 25 million people employed in the coffee-industry, it is the one of the largest industries in the world.
Chances are high that you're a coffee lover too. If so, you need to realize that coffee contains high quantities of caffeine, about 115 mg per cup1.That is 4 times as much as a glass of cola, 3 time as much as tea and even 5 mg more that an energy beverage like Red Bull. Enjoy it, but don't exaggerate!
Chocolate is the number one food flavor in the world, beating vanilla and banana by 3-to-1. Chocolate is made from fat, sugar and cacao. Cacao is a powder derived from the cacao bean and contains caffeine. A bar of chocolate contains considerably less caffeine (30mg) than a cup of coffee, but if you always have chocolates with your coffee or tea, you are combining two sources of xanthine.
Of course not. You can drink a cup of coffee or tea from time to time. Just remember not to exaggerate. If you drink four cups of coffee in the morning, have tea and chocolates at noun and enjoy a fresh glass of cola before going to bed, you're asking for stomach troubles. Too much caffeine on one day will have a negative influence on your stomach valve. Also, sugar and chocolate can be addictive and therefore cause food cravings that mess up your stomach.
Can you stay away from chocolate? From coffee? Does it cause any heartburn? Please tell us!
(1) ^ Milon, H.; Guidoux, R.; Antonioli, J. A. (1988). "4 "Physiological Effects of Coffee and its Components"". In R. J. Clarke & R. Macrae. Coffee: Physiology. Berlin: Springer. ISBN1-85166-186-7.