Tips For Better Sleep

Can Decaf Coffee Affect Your Sleep Quality?

December 27, 2023   By JM Carpiso

Can you ever live without coffee? Many can’t. The energising powers of coffee as well as its distinct aroma and flavour makes it hard to give up for many. However, drinking coffee does have its downside– it can prevent you from sleeping and sometimes give you anxiety. 

Decaf can be your answer to that. Yes, coffee has many benefits, including a rich flavour, pleasant aroma, and energy-boosting properties, but its drawbacks—most notably, its ability to cause anxiety and disturb sleep—cannot be overlooked. Here comes decaf coffee, which could be a lifesaver for people who want to continue drinking coffee but don’t want the bad effects.

The Tasty Trade-Off: Decaf Coffee

A woman sleeping beside a cup of decaf coffee.

Decaf coffee, sometimes known as decaffeinated coffee, is processed to remove the majority of the caffeine. It provides a medium ground for coffee lovers who want to enjoy their beloved brew without risking insomnia or elevating anxiety levels.

Decaf coffee still does have some caffeine. It has a low caffeine content, often ranging from 2 to 5 milligrams per 8-ounce cup, compared to 95 mg in a conventional cup of coffee. For caffeine-sensitive individuals, even a small amount may have an effect, especially if ingested later in the day.

Caffeine sensitivity varies greatly among individuals. While some people can consume caffeine without experiencing any visible side effects, others may respond to even small doses. This sensitivity spectrum is influenced by factors such as genetics, metabolism, and overall health. So in essence, decaf can still have some effect depending on your own caffeine sensitivity. 

However, decaf still provides you with an alternative to drinking a fully caffeinated cup vs. one that is super mild. This can heavily influence your quality of sleep. 

Why Decaf?

A pot of coffee, a mug and a cup of coffee

Does decaf affect sleep? Well it may but not as much as coffee. It may still afford you a good night’s rest. What’s good about decaf is that it allows you to get that coffee taste without the palpitations. 

Drinking decaf coffee allows you to enjoy the ritualistic experience of sipping a warm and fragrant cup without the stimulant effects of caffeine. The ritual of brewing and enjoying coffee can be deeply ingrained in your daily routine and is so hard to let go of. Decaf ensures you can still enjoy this experience without sacrificing your well-being and your much needed sleep. 

Aside from allowing you to sleep, drinking decaf gives you a host of other health benefits. Coffee has been linked to many unwanted effects and toning down or switching to decaf can be what you need. 

Benefits of Drinking Decaf

A cup of coffee beside one's bed

Decaffeinated coffee, which was formerly considered to be just a compromise for people looking to reduce their caffeine intake, is now emerging as a beverage with a variety of possible health benefits. While it may not deliver the same energy boost as regular coffee, decaf has its own set of benefits that make it an enticing choice for many health-conscious people.

Here are some of the surprising benefits of decaf coffee:

1. Anxiety Relief

Decaf coffee allows people who feel anxious or sensitive to caffeine’s stimulatory effects to enjoy the sensory delights of coffee without increasing their anxiety. Because most of the caffeine has been removed, people can enjoy the flavour and scent of coffee without the potential jitteriness or restlessness associated with ordinary coffee.

2. Improved Sleep Quality

Decaf coffee becomes your mate in the promotion of better sleep. Because of its lower caffeine content, decaf coffee is a suitable alternative for people who wish to have a cup of coffee in the evening without disrupting their sleep patterns. This is especially beneficial for caffeine-sensitive individuals who have difficulty falling asleep after drinking regular coffee.

3. Cardiovascular Health

Decaf coffee has been linked to possible cardiovascular benefits. According to certain research, drinking decaf on a regular basis may help to reduce the risk of certain cardiac diseases. Coffee antioxidants, especially in decaffeinated form, may help support heart health by lowering inflammation and enhancing blood vessel function.

4. Blood Pressure Control

Caffeine is known to briefly boost blood pressure, and this increase may be more pronounced in persons who are susceptible to its effects. Decaf coffee is an option for those who want to lower their blood pressure without sacrificing the enjoyment of a coffee break. Because of the lower caffeine level, decaf is a good alternative for people who are concerned about their blood pressure.

5. Acidity is reduced

Coffee is frequently chastised for its ability to cause acid reflux and stomach distress. Decaf coffee is softer on the stomach due to its lower acidity levels. Decaf offers a tasty alternative to high-acid coffee without the possible downsides associated with acid-related illnesses or sensitive stomachs.

6. Reduced Frequent Urination

Caffeine is a diuretic, which means it can increase urine production and contribute to more frequent toilet visits. Decaf coffee, due to its lower caffeine level, reduces this diuretic impact. Decaf becomes a viable option for people who want to enjoy a cup of coffee without the hassle of regular urination.

Decaf coffee is more than just a caffeine-free substitute; it also has a number of possible health benefits. Decaf coffee offers a tasty and health-conscious option for coffee enthusiasts, from boosting heart health and anxiety management to promoting better sleep and decreasing digestive pain. As with any nutritional choice, individual sensitivities and preferences must be considered, but for many, decaf coffee represents a tasty compromise that corresponds with overall well-being.

Why You Need To Cut Down on Caffeine if You Want to Sleep Well

A woman in bed smiling

Numerous scientific studies have found a link between coffee use and sleep problems. Caffeine has a deleterious impact on sleep initiation, duration, and quality, according to research published in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine and other respectable sources. Caffeine reduction, particularly in the hours preceding bedtime, is thus a viable technique for encouraging better sleep.

Here are some scientific reasons why:

1. Sleep Pattern Disruption

Caffeine is a stimulant that can disrupt the body’s natural sleep-wake cycle. It inhibits the brain’s adenosine receptors, a neurotransmitter that promotes sleep. Caffeine use, particularly in the hours preceding bedtime, can interfere with the ability to fall asleep and diminish overall sleep length.

2. Melatonin Production Delay

Caffeine use, even early in the day, can decrease melatonin production, a hormone important for sleep regulation. Melatonin tells the body that it’s time to relax and prepare for sleep. Caffeine levels in the system might delay the commencement of melatonin release, making it more difficult to fall asleep when desired.

3. Increased Alertness and Wakefulness

Caffeine’s principal role is to inhibit adenosine’s actions, enhancing wakefulness and alertness. While this is useful during the day, ingesting caffeine near bedtime might prolong its wakeful effects, making it difficult to fall asleep and potentially diminishing overall sleep quality.

With that in mind, drinking decaf does help you sleep better because of its lessened caffeine content. Avoiding caffeine can help you get that much desired rest that you need. Numerous scientific studies have found a link between coffee use and sleep problems. 

Caffeine has a negative impact on sleep initiation, duration, and quality, according to research published in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine and other respectable sources. Caffeine reduction, particularly in the hours preceding bedtime, is a good technique for encouraging better sleep.

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