04.04.23 Caffeine: Should You or Shouldn’t You?

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b-untethered | Blog | Newsletter | 04.04.23 Caffeine: Should You or Shouldn't You? | Image of women drinking coffee

Caffeine: Should You or Shouldn't You?

Nearly half of adults reach for a caffeinated beverage due to habit, according to data from the International Food Information Council (IFIC). But an equal percentage (45%) indicate they consume caffeine “to feel awake/alert.”

If you are a woman in menopause, or on your way there, there may be different reasons for your caffeine intake.

Many of the symptoms of menopause can lead to feelings of fatigue. In fact, lack of energy is a commonly reported symptom of menopause. Sleep problems, difficulty concentrating, and general fatigue have us reaching for a second cup of morning coffee or an afternoon diet soda.  It can leave us wondering – is there a limit? 

Organizations, including the Food and Drug Administration and Health Canada, suggest 400 mg of caffeine as a daily limit. Up to this level, individuals can gain benefits such as alertness, improved reaction speed, and better focus. Research suggests a single dose of 75-100 mg caffeine can also be beneficial to a workout. Above the 400 mg level, people may have issues with sleep, irritability and nervousness. Those who have problems falling asleep should consider avoiding caffeine at least 4-5 hours before bedtime as even 100 mg caffeine can affect sleep.

What does 400 gm of caffeine look like? An eight-ounce cup of home brewed coffee contains 95 mg, while a 16-ounce cup at your favorite coffee house often has more than 300 mg. A typical 20-ounce diet soda has about 95 mg. But caffeine is found in more than coffee, tea, and soda. Energy drinks and shots contain caffeine as do some over-the-counter medications, guarana supplements, and yerba mate, a beverage made from the plant’s leaves. 

For women in the menopause transition, there are some specific considerations including a study done at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN which suggests a link between caffeine consumption and higher incidence of hot flashes and night sweats. On a positive note, the same study found that perimenopausal women who consumed more caffeine had fewer problems with mood, memory, and concentration. While research has not specifically been done on midlife women, meta-analysis suggests that caffeine may have positive effects on muscle strength and power in younger adults. As women look to maintain their strength, muscle mass, and exercise performance in midlife, there could potentially be benefits to caffeine consumption.

The bottom line for menopausal women is that caffeine is a personal choice. You know your body better than anyone, regardless of recent shifts from hormone changes. Pay attention to how your body reacts to caffeine, the time of day you’re ingesting and other symptoms you might be incurring. Caffeine just might be that one variable bringing you strength and positive outcomes…..or, on the flip, keeping you from a sound night’s sleep.

Rule Meno™ Product Pick

Reducing your daily carbs doesn’t mean avoiding all pastas. This week’s Rule Meno Product Pick is Barilla whole grain pastas. As an excellent source of fiber and with 8 grams of protein per serving, this pasta line offers quality carbs. Serve with a protein source like meat, poultry, or lentils and plenty of non-starchy veggies like broccoli and bell peppers.

The Rule Meno Product Pick is fueled by the Women’s Health Midlife filter on sifter.shop.

b-untethered | Blog | Newsletter | 04.04.23 Caffeine: Should You or Shouldn't You? | Image pasta and pasta recipe

Rule Midlife™ Yoga

Stretching and Recovery become more important as we age. Daily stretching can help improve your flexibility, decrease the amount of energy you need to complete a movement, and most importantly, help prevent injury. Flexibility training can also improve our posture, balance, coordination, and help us to stay agile.

Join Coach Pam in this 20 minute yoga session to begin your journey to better flexibility.

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