Why Does Coffee Make Me Nauseous

There are misconceptions that it is not normal to feel nauseous after drinking coffee. However, this is pretty common for some people, especially for those who drink coffee on an empty stomach.

Since coffee is considered a stimulant, it helps boost your digestive system to work much faster, creating more stomach acid than needed. This can make you feel queasy, which can affect your entire day.

That’s why we created this guide. We would like to inform you about the reasons why coffee makes you sick. We will also cover how you can get rid of the nauseousness you feel and enjoy the benefits of caffeine without the awful feeling afterwards.

Why does coffee make me nauseous

1. Drinking Coffee on an Empty Stomach.

One of the few reasons why you feel sick after coffee intake is consuming coffee on an empty stomach. It’s best to note that caffeinated beverages, including coffee, stimulate gastric acid secretion — a fluid that helps to break down the food you eat.

Now, if you don’t eat food and drink black coffee, it will make your stomach upset, and trigger acid reflux that may cause abdominal pain and nauseousness. To avoid experiencing this coffee-induced nausea, make sure to eat something before drinking your morning cup of coffee.

You can also choose the low-acid decaf coffee over dark roasts for less caffeine intake. Another option is to mix your coffee with cow’s milk or go for other low-acid coffee options.

2. You Are Sensitive To Caffeinated Beverages.

Another reason why you feel sick of coffee is that you have a sensitive stomach. If this is the case for you, opt for a milky coffee or a decaffeinated coffee.

If you still feel nauseous, it’s best to avoid drinking coffee altogether. Instead of that, consider drinking herbal tea or other alternative beverages that are caffeine-free.

3. You Have Acid Reflux.

Coffee has a pH range of 4.85 to 5.10, which leans on the acidic side. Coffee acidity helps speed up food digestion, which is the reason why you may observe that people tend to use the bathroom after drinking coffee.

In some cases, coffee consumption may cause gastrointestinal symptoms, which lead you to feel sick afterward. So, if you have existing acid reflux, it’s best to avoid highly acidic food and acidic coffee.

4. You Drink Too Much Caffeine.

Drinking too much coffee can result in acid reflux, resulting in acid reflux. These acids can irritate your stomach lining, making you feel heartburn and nauseous.

If you can’t go with your day without coffee, consider drinking the dark roast coffee. This type of coffee usually has lower acidity than your regular, instant coffee.

5. Too Much Sugar and Cream.

You might have just heard about this. But, it’s been a wild fact that consuming too much sugar can cause nausea. This is part of the dumping syndrome condition, which usually happens after taking a high-sugar meal or drink.

That said, consider limiting your sugar or cream usage. Maintain a balanced diet and limit your sugar intake to avoid negative effects on your health

6. You Are on Certain Medications.

There are certain medications that react to caffeine. For instance, when you take antibacterial drugs like Cipro or antidepressants like MAOIs and drink coffee, you may experience feeling queasy.

According to a registered dietician, nausea is one of the many potential effects of caffeine-medication interaction. That’s why you must check the labels of your medication thoroughly when you take any medications to prevent food-drug interactions.

Now that we have covered a few reasons why coffee makes you feel nauseated, let’s find out how you can get rid of your caffeine-induced nausea.

Woman swallowing a pill with a glass of water, taking prescribed medicine

Facts and Figures About Related to Coffee

CAUSE OF NAUSEAEXPLANATIONSFACTS AND FIGURES
AcidityThe natural acidity of coffee can irritate the stomach lining.pH: 4.85 – 5.10
Caffeine SensitivityThere are people who are more sensitive to caffeine, leading to nausea.10-20% of population sensitive; 95-200 mg of caffeine per cup
Empty StomachDrinking coffee without food increases stomach acid.Increases gastric acid secretion by up to 25%
AdditivesIngredients like milk, cream, or sweeteners can cause digestive issues.65% of the global population is lactose intolerant
DehydrationCoffee’s diuretic effect can lead to dehydration and nausea.Fluid loss: 1.5-2 cups per cup of coffee
OverconsumptionDrinking too much coffee can overwhelm your system.>400 mg caffeine/day (4 cups) increases risk
Low Blood SugarDrinking coffee without food can drop your blood sugar levels.Particularly an issue in the morning

How To Get Rid Of Your Caffeine Induced Nausea?

You don’t have to totally give up your love for coffee to stop feeling sick when drinking it. You can do the following instead:

✔️Use Additives Like Unsweetened Milk Substitutes.

To reduce the acidity of coffee, you can use additives like milk. However, if you are lactose intolerant, you can try a substitute like oat milk.

✔️ Drink Herbal Teas.

You can also give yourself a rest when it comes to coffee consumption and drink herbal tea instead. However, it would be best to have it cold since hot water draws out more caffeine out of tea leaves.

❌Avoid Acidic Foods and Drinks.

If you eat acidic foods, its acidity and coffee’s acid will likely pile up in your stomach, causing gastrointestinal discomfort. As much as possible, avoid or limit foods like highly processed meats, and beverages like energy drinks, soda and other high carbonated drinks.

❌ Avoid Caffeine Overdose.

Even though you love coffee to the moon and back, it is not wise to over consume it. Drinking lots of coffee can dramatically increase your blood pressure. So, if you want to lessen the queasy feeling after drinking your favorite cup of coffee, consider limiting your intake.

Avoid Artificial Sweeteners.

Though seeing the “zero-calorie” level of sugar is tempting, it is best to avoid it. That’s because it could only mean one thing — it is artificial.

This means you could be ingesting something harmful that may stir up your gut bacteria. Opt for a natural sweetener like stevia leaf extract — a natural substitute to sugar if you can’t drink your coffee black.

❌Avoid Artificial Creamers.

They contain harmful ingredients like Dipotassium phosphate — an ingredient that helps break down the acidity of coffee. Though this is good at some point, this element may cause diarrhea and nausea because of its laxative effects.

How to Get the Benefits of Caffeine Without Feeling Sick?

✔️ Choose Decaf.

Decaf coffee is much better than regular coffee in terms of caffeine content. This type of coffee contains at least 7 mg of caffeine per ounce, washing away almost 97% of caffeine that you can get on regular coffee.

✔️ Consider Adding Milk to Your Coffee.

Adding milk to your coffee not only gives it a smoother taste, but it also lessens the caffeine you can take. However, if you are lactose intolerant, you can try oat milk as a substitute.

✔️ Opt for Cold Brew Coffee

Cold brew coffee has less caffeine than your regular hot coffee. However, it’s best to note that this still depends on the coffee’s brand, brewing time and bean to water ratio.

White cup being filled with decaf coffee in a cafe

Final Thoughts

Coffee is a lovely drink that keeps us pumped up. However, it needs to be consumed with care to avoid getting nauseous afterwards. You must also avoid drinking it on an empty stomach to avoid the queasy feeling.

To avoid nausea, make sure to eat some food, choose low-acid options, moderate your intake and ensure to keep yourself hydrated. If nausea persists, make sure to consult your doctor for advice.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Nausea After Drinking Coffee

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