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Caffeine

July 19, 2012
By:  Maria
Take a close look at the photo above.

Does this look like something that would be favorable to your health or, specifically, your gut?

What if I told you many, many people consume this frequently and in abundance?

This bristly compound (shown above under high power microscope) is caffeine and, if you are a regular consumer, you may be experiencing ill side effects.

Caffeine is present in beans, leaves and the fruit of some plants. Its purpose? To stun, paralyze or kill the insects that try to feed on the plant. Basically, nature’s pesticide. Not as potent as the pesticides you have sitting in your garage, but if the insects are smart enough to avoid the plants containing caffeine for their own survival, it gets you thinking (or it should).

Caffeine & Adrenals

Some of the most health conscious people I know – those that eat squeaky clean, get plenty of sleep, don’t exercise excessively and avoid anything that contributes to the decline of their health – still have difficulty getting rid of their caffeine habit (you know who you are!). It will often surprise me – they openly admit they need to cut back or eliminate for an extended period of time, they understand the issues they’re having and yet they continue to sabotage their abused adrenals.

When you consume caffeine, the adrenals are stimulated to produce adrenalin. Adrenalin then stimulates the pancreas to produce glucagon, which in turn tells the liver to convert fat to glucose. Glucose is there for energy, but when it’s not needed (like when you’re sitting around drinking a cup a coffee, energy drink or soda), it rises to excess in your blood stream.
What’s the problem with excess glucose? It causes your pancreas to produce insulin that makes the glucose go back into fat storage.

Caffeine affects blood sugar and the nervous system, which are both tied into adrenal function. Repeated consumption of caffeine, when the adrenals are already stressed, can and will lead to adrenal burn out.

Can you guess the most common part of a protocol to fix over-stimulated adrenals? Yep, eliminating or seriously reducing caffeine intake.

Whether you’re 20, 40 or 60 years old, if you are frequently stimulating your adrenals via caffeine, the adrenals are headed towards fatigue and/or burn out. It’s a wreck waiting to happen, especially if you’re adding intense workouts on top of that.

Another health concern arising from over stimulated adrenals is the thyroid. Several integrative practitioners and holistic physicians have talked about the direct link between the health of the adrenal gland and thyroid gland. If one is unhealthy, the other one is soon to follow.

If you are reaching out to caffeine for energy, know that what you will get is not actually energy but, in reality, stress. If you feel like you need caffeine and could not function without it on any given day, you should re-evaluate your habit.

You should truly be in control of your health, not the addiction in control of YOU.

If the caffeine is controlling your life, it might be time for a vacation from caffeine – take 30 days to eliminate all sources of caffeine – your adrenals will thank you

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