MORE GREAT NEWS ABOUT CAFFEINE
Coffee Consumption May Confer Neurological Benefits
Posted on May 5, 2012 by Sean Wells
Parkinson’s disease affects over 50,000 Americans each year, is a progressive disorder of the central nervous system. This progressive degeneration of the central nervous system (CNS) most profoundly interferes with body movement. Symptoms, which typically begin to occur after age 50, include tremors, muscle tension and alterations in speech or walking gait.
A recent study, co-authored by Evergreen Healthcare neurologist Dr. Pinky Agarwal, in Kirkland, WA, provides some potentially good news for those concerned about preserving their neurological function: consuming caffeinated coffee may significantly reduce the risk of Parkinson’s disease in some men and women. While some benefit appeared for all subjects, the degree of success appeared dependent on their genetics.
According to the study, researchers identified a connection between coffee’s protective qualities and a gene known as GRIN2A, which regulates brain signals that control movement and behavior. A total of 2,389 subjects were entered into the study—1,458 who had Parkinson’s, 931 who did not.
Lifetime caffeinated-beverage consumption was correlated, along with gender and age, and the group was subdivided into two categories of either “heavy” or “light” coffee drinkers. In addition, genome-wide genotyping data for each participant was submitted and analyzed.
According to results, on average heavy coffee drinkers were found to display a 27 percent lower risk of developing Parkinson’s disease, regardless of the genes they carry. The risk was even less for heavy coffee drinkers who also carry a specific variation of GRIN2A. Their risk was established as 59 percent below average, or less than half that of the coffee drinkers without this variant.
“Researchers have long studied the relationship between coffee and Parkinson’s disease with results often showing that all people do not benefit equally from consuming varying amounts of caffeinated coffee. Through this study, we have proven the benefits of using genetic evidence to determine new risk factors for Parkinson’s,” said Dr. Agarwal. “We think the results will contribute to more personalized treatment for and prevention of this disease.”
It also appears that, regardless of specific genotype, coffee consumption does offer at least some neuroprotective benefits to the general population. Along with recently reported antioxidant properties, it appears that caffeine is acquiring some reputation for health benefits. Those who enjoy coffee apparently have good reason, and thus far are advised to carry on.
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Q. Is caffeine addictive?
A. Yes, but much milder than other drugs! Caffeine increases the body's natural level of dopamine,
(a pleasure-enhancing neurotransmitter) ( Works for me! )
Q. Does Caffeine provide energy?
A. No. Caffeine is a chemical, not a macro-nutrient. However, it acts as a mild stimulant and thus may cause an individual to perceive less fatigue.( Works for me! )
Q. Will caffeine make me smarter? ( Really!??? People ask that? )
A. No. Caffeine effects memory retention, (that works for me!) not acquisition or ability to process info
Q. Can people become immune to the effects of caffeine?
A. Yes. The stimulatory and ergogenic effects of caffeine are often more apparent in non-users of caffeine. (That explains the progression to iced cappaccino's in the a.m.!!)
Q. Is caffeine associated with heart disease?
A. No. Any evidence linking caffeine consumption to coronary heart disease is very weak Also,caffeine does not lead to an increase in blood pressure or hypertension. ( We knew that )
Q. Will caffeine consumption contribute to breast cancer?
A. No. Caffeine itself does not trigger the development of breast cancer.( WHEW! )
Q. Is caffeine a risk factor for osteoporosis?
A. No. Most studies have shown that caffeine intake is not a risk factor for osteoporosis particularly in women who consume sufficient calcium.( Got MILK? )
Q. Is it safe to drink caffeinated beverages during pregnancy?
A. The most recent research suggests that pregnant women avoid caffeine( Score 1 for menopause! )
Q. Does Caffeine cause dehydration?
A. Water facilitates every metabolic function in a cell. Coffee and or caffeine are regularly described as diuretics however, the present literature does not support this acute diuretic effect. In fact,during exercise, caffeinated beverages hydrate almost identically to non- caffeinated beverages (Armstrong 2002)( What you got in that water bottle, Sheila? )
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For most of us, caffeine is part of our daily lives, whether it’s a cup of java to get us going in the morning or a diet soda on our afternoon break.
“Caffeine takes only 15 to 20 minutes to get into the bloodstream, yet we feel its effects for up to 10 hours,” says Beth Czerwony, MS, RD, LD, a registered dietitian at Cleveland Clinic.
Sometimes those effects are more than just a pick-me-up. Caffeine can cause headaches, irritability, sleeping problems, heart palpitations, gastrointestinal distress and dehydration. If caffeine gives you the jitters or you find you’re becoming too dependent on it, consider cutting back, says Ms. Czerwony.
This is AWESOME! It just keeps getting better!!!
AND ONE MORE BIT OF INFO RE:
THAT MORNING/AFTERNOON/ EVENING CUP OF CAFFEINE
(BETTER THINK ABOUT THE LAST ONE)
CAFFEINE....IT DOES A BODY GOOD!!
CAFFEINE - WEIGHT LOSS BREAKTHROUGH OR BUST?
I SWEAR....I DID NOT MAKE THIS UP!! JUST RECEIVED THIS FROM A
NAPW PUBLICATION - National Association of Professional Women
"Dear NAPW Members!
Are your days getting longer?
We are almost at March, so hard to believe. The fun holidays are behind us and taking a vacation seems like a distant thought. Is it harder to get through the days? Do you find yourself lacking energy part way through the day?
Many may think caffeine is bad for you, but in fact, it has several benefits: 1) it can make you smarter -- caffeine actually increases neuronal firing in the brain and the release of other neurotransmitters like dopamine and norepinephrine; and, 2) it can help you burn fat and improve physical performance -- due to its stimulant effect on the central nervous system, caffeine both raises metabolism and increases the oxidation of fatty acids.
So if you are struggling to make it through the day, or you want to enjoy the benefits of caffeine, try these amazing innovations." I'm a believer!!! : )
MOST RECENT RESEARCH ON COFFEE AND IT'S HEALTH BENEFITS -
I LOVE THIS STUFF!!!!
"....drink coffee: Research suggest it can lower your risk for certain types of skin cancer, breast cancer, and uterine cancer. Sipping java may also help you live longer and reduce your risk of heart disease and stroke, writes Robert J Davis, Ph.D., in his new book about nutrition myths, Coffee is Good for You."Taken without permission from the Feb/March 2012 AARP The Magazine.. : )
I LOVE MY COFFEE IN THE MORNING --- 3 PM ISN'T BAD EITHER!!!
Caffeine- ahhhh the maligned substance that we love to hate, but just can't do without. We've been told that it is bad for us, good for us, or makes no difference. What and where is the truth in all of the information out there? Like all things we read about health, nutrition and fitness, we must be sure about the source of that information. We need to know who is doing the research, if it is reputable research journal or organization, and not just a company paying for research results that will sell it's product, promote it's agenda. or increase magazine sales. I have consistantly given you, all the most current up to date information from the most reputable resources in the fitness industry in the world.
Most of my students know that I LOVE my cup of "jo" in the morning. As a matter of fact, they can usually tell when the caffeine has "kicked in", by my demeanor and energy level. Many years ago, I learned at an IDEA (International Dance Exercise Association) Fitness Conference, that small amounts of caffeine in your bloodstream, before exercising, helped burn body fat. Twenty plus years later, researchers are still studying caffeine's ergogenic potential for improving athletic performance. For several decades now, the results of numerous studies has consistantly suggested that caffeine, which is recognized as a mild stimulant, is an ergogenic aid for cardiovascular activities that last 30-60 minutes in duration. It has been shown to enhance exercise performance on various levels, by increasing the release of fatty acids, which in turn burns more body fat. The muscles you are working, use the extra fat early in exercise, which reduces the use of glycogen stored in the muscles. This also may help delay fatigue while exercising. It should be noted that there is still debate over whether or not caffeine directly affects weight loss. (Graham 2001). This does however, suggest, that caffeine enhances endurance by increasing the release of epinephrine into the blood, which releases free fatty acids from fat tissue and / or skeletal muscle (Spriet 1995)
Ahrens study was conducted to measure the effects of caffeine as a potential ergogenic aid, by determining the differences in metabolic and cardiovascular responses to treadmill walking in physically active females. They were either given caffeine tablets or a placebo. The study measured caffeine's influence on oxygen uptake (VO2); rate of perceived exersion (RPE); heart rate (HR); respiratory exchange ratio (RER) which determines which fuel source is being used; rate of energy expenditure (REE); and percentage of maximal oxygen uptake reserve (%VO2R) Originally, the caffeine doses were 3mg/kg body weight/BW), 6 mg/kg (of BW), 9mg/kg (of BW) - amounts equivalent to 2-6 cups of coffee. The 9mg/kg test was eliminated because several of the subjects had adverse reactions, such as dizziness, body tremors, vomiting and sweating. The study showed that the ergogenic effects of caffeine could show up within 5 minutes during aerobic exercise.
The final results indicated that the 3 mg/kg dose of caffeine did not significantly effect physiological performance. The 6 mg/kg dose showed an increase in VO2,(4% increase) REE (5%increase) and %VO2R (5% increase). There was no significant increase in RPE, HR, or RER. The increase VO2 did not correlate with an increased HR, which suggests that caffeine may have increased cardiovascular efficiency. The increase in REE, implied an increase in caloric expenditure, however, the amount calculated was insignificant in increasing weight loss. Bottom line, caffeine may increase your cardiovascular efficiency, and helps delay fatigue, but "does not necessarily help women who exercise moderately, to lose weight. That being said.....I LOVE MY CUP OF "JO" in the morning!!!
Information gathered from a study done by: Ahrens, J.N.,et al. 2007. The physiological effects of caffeine in women during treadmill walking. Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research 21 (1), 164-68 Excerpts from Idea Fitness
SOME INTERESTING AND NOT SO INTERESTING FACTS ABOUT CAFFEINE
Definition: Caffeine is a bitter-tasting chemical substance that possesses the qualities of a mild stimulant. It acts directly on the central nervous system (CNS) and skeletal muscles (Spriet, 1995) As a CNS stimulant, caffeine triggers an increase in blood circulation, heart rate, urine output and gastric secretions and causes a decrease in glucose metabolism (Armstrong 2002) Caffeine is most commonly associated with coffee and tea, but is found in numerous plants. That's because many plants naturally produce caffeine as pesticide! (that can't be good for you!)
FAQ'S ABOUT CAFFEINE:( With Editorial Comments from Moi )excerpts from IDEA Fitness Journal, Jan '08