Effects of Drinking Coffee on an Empty Stomach

Many people need a comforting cup of coffee to start their day. However, sometimes there’s no time for breakfast before taking the first sip. Some may wonder if this harms their stomachs and if they should stop doing it. This article will tell you about the possible effects of coffee on your body when drinking it on an empty stomach.

Acid Reflux

Drinking coffee on an empty stomach has no serious effects because your gut produces a barrier protecting it from everything you ingest. A study from 2013 showed no significant connections between drinking coffee and gut problems.

However, drinking coffee on an empty stomach may cause heartburn and increase acid production. That happens because coffee increases the creation of the hormone gastrin, which prompts stomach acid secretion.

The acid is usually neutralized by food, so drinking coffee without any additions like milk could decrease your stomach’s pH value. That isn’t a big issue for your stomach, but your esophagus lining is more susceptible to damage from stomach acid in case it splashes upwards.

Increase in Cortisol

Drinking coffee without breakfast can affect the production of a stress hormone called cortisol responsible for regulating metabolism, blood pressure, and blood sugar levels. This is why coffee affects bowel movements, heart rate, and blood pressure.

However, what concerns some dietitians is that the cortisol levels are already the highest in the morning, so increasing them might be risky. Research is divided on this topic, but it has been shown that regular coffee drinkers have lowered cortisol production. It has a temporary effect on people who don’t drink it frequently.

While coffee affects your body, it doesn’t cause significant harm to your stomach. However, it can cause discomfort during the day. For that reason, it’s best to have a meal beforehand.

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