Posted on: 30.12.2022 Posted by: Drlark Comments: 0

June 17, 2004



Coffee and PMS

The taste and aroma of coffee lures millions of

people into cafes and bistros all around the world, with Americans

alone consuming more than a half billion cups a day. But the reality

is this aromatic beverage poses genuine dangers for women. Countless

research studies as well as my own extensive clinical experience

has shown caffeine is associated with a number of negative health


Most recently, the October 2001 issue of Fertility and Sterility

revealed that caffeine elevates estrogen levels in women —

a situation that increases the risk of breast and ovarian cancer,

as well as for fibroid tumors, endometriosis, heavy menstrual bleeding,

benign breast disease, PMS, and a host of other health conditions.

Researchers caution women

In a study done at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, researchers

evaluated for the effect of coffee on the hormone levels of nearly

500 women, aged 36 to 45, who were in the first five days of their

menstrual cycle. They found that the more coffee a woman consumed,

the higher her level of estrogen was likely to be. In fact, women

who consumed four to five cups of coffee per day—the equivalent

of at least 500 milligrams of caffeine—during the early part

of their menstrual cycle produced nearly 70 percent more estrogen

than women who consumed less than one cup of coffee a day—or

100 milligrams of caffeine. In fact, caffeine intake from all sources,

including black tea, cola drinks, cocoa, chocolate, and over-the-counter

medications such as Drisdan, Midol, and Excedrin, was linked with

higher estrogen levels. Based on these results, researchers cautioned

women against drinking more than two cups of coffee per day, because

high levels of estrogen can exacerbate PMS symptoms.

Eliminate caffeine from your diet

This study reinforces the findings of a number of earlier studies

on caffeine and female hormone related conditions. And, based on

the findings, I recommend eliminating all caffeinated foods and

beverages from your diet. But I know that for some of you, this

is not realistic. Like many of my patients, you may be dependent

upon caffeine as a pick-me-up to combat the drowsiness and “brain

fog” often experienced in the morning. For others, there is

a ritual and social aspect to drinking coffee. Plus, coffee does

have some merit as a central nervous system stimulant that increases

brain activity and speeds up the metabolism, while also increasing

heart and respiratory rates. But, in the end, the risks far outweigh

the benefits.

Don’t go “cold turkey” though, eliminating caffeine abruptly

can cause unpleasant withdrawal symptoms such as headaches, depression,

and fatigue, so take it slowly and eliminate a little at a time.

And, try these as a substitute for coffee: Water-processed decaffeinated

coffee, green tea, and herbal teas, especially peppermint, chamomile,

and ginger.

Read More on PMS:

Getting Started

What is PMS?

Causes of PMS

What is Your Risk of PMS?

Keep it SIMPLE tip — Yoga Pose for PMS

Nutritional Therapies

Preventing PMS with food

Nutrients for PMS

Coffee and PMS

Natural Progesterone

Complementary Therapies

Healing Benefits of Red Light

Release Pain through Golden Light



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