How to counteract caffeine if you’ve had too much coffee

How to counteract caffeine if you've had too much coffee

Anxiety, headache and tachycardia, what to do if you overdid your caffeine?

The stimulating effects can begin between 15 and 30 minutes after ingestion.

Photo: Public Domain Pictures / Pixabay

He coffee It is a healthy drink if consumed in moderation. This stimulating drink has become a daily ritual for many people who can offer health benefits thanks to its polyphenols and caffeine. But Going out of line can cause side effects.

Coffee has positive effects on inflammation, cardiovascular diseases, autoimmunity, fatty liver, neurological diseases, diabetes, and even promotes weight loss. Among the immediate effects that caffeine can cause you is a increased alertness, energy and ability to concentrate.

Moderate consumption

The recommended caffeine intake is 400 milligrams per day for healthy adults (no more than 4 8-ounce cups of coffee).

Not all people can tolerate and drink the same amount of caffeine. For example, those with certain heart conditions can have side effects with less caffeine than a healthy person can tolerate.

Signs that you’ve had too much caffeine

Among the symptoms that you could present for doses higher than the recommended, the Harvard School of Public Health points out:

  • anxiety
  • restlessness
  • insomnia
  • incrise of cardiac frecuency

You can also present:

  • headache
  • dizziness
  • irritability
  • diarrhea or upset stomach

Caffeine effects can start within 15 minutes

The stimulating effects can begin between 15 and 30 minutes after ingestion and last on average 4 hours.

The time it takes the body to eliminate 50% of caffeine varies depending on various factors, such as age, weight, pregnancy, drug intake and liver health, says the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA).

It’s not just the coffee

We generally associate coffee as the source of caffeine, although it is not the only one. Caffeine is also found in tea (green, black and oolong), and among the products that can provide high doses are energy drinks, appetite suppressants, exercise supplements, medications and on some pills to keep you awake.

What to do if you’ve overdone caffeine

Registered dietitian Melissa Nieves gives some recommendations on Well + Good to counteract the effects of too much caffeine.

Drink enough water

“Caffeine can act as a mild diuretic and dehydration can worsen symptoms,” says the specialist. You must stay well hydrated until the caffeine is out of your system.


Walking supports your digestion and can also help calm your nerves. Gentle exercise will also help reduce headache symptoms.

Take a deep breath

Inhale, hold your breath for a few seconds and exhale slowly. Breathing exercises will make you feel more relaxed and relieve stress and anxiety that can accompany palpitations from excess caffeine.

Overdose that can lead to death

Caffeine overdoses have resulted in death. Research reveals that more than 150-200 mg of caffeine per kg of body weight, or 5 to 10 grams of total caffeine ingested is considered lethal (some have ingested up to 50g), especially if people do not receive medical treatment in time.

To arrive at the amount of 5 grams of caffeine you would need to drink 50 cups of coffee. It is a situation that seems unlikely but possible. There are those who have exceeded these levels of caffeine in medications, powders or pills.

In addition to nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, and diarrhea, neurological symptoms such as delusions, hallucinations, anxiety, agitation, excitement, seizures, headache, cerebral edema, coma occur. There are also cardiovascular, musculoskeletal, metabolic and pulmonary symptoms such as respiratory failure.


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