The Real Truth About Coffee and Hydration
If you have lived on this planet for a while, chances are you've heard people tell you that coffee is dehydrating. Given the fact that Americans consume 400 million cups of coffee daily, it stands to reason that we should investigate this statement. Do we need to be concerned about drinking coffee? Can we stay properly hydrated as coffee drinkers?
As we know, coffee contains caffeine, a compound naturally occurring in the coffea plant (as well as tea and cacao). Caffeine is one of the reasons people turn to their morning brew for a pick me up.This stimulant has been highly researched with studies finding numerous health benefits to moderate usage. For more information on this, see our article on the Secret Benefits of the Coffee Buzz.
We also know that water makes up about sixty to seventy percent of body weight. As every system in the body depends on the availability of fluids, even mild dehydration can impair bodily functions and performance. The idea that drinking caffeinated coffee leads to dehydration has been perpetuated for decades, leaving many hesitant to enjoy this healthful beverage. Recent scientific evidence, however, does not support this commonly held belief. Read on for the most up to date information.
What the Studies Show About Coffee and Dehydration
- Bio-individuality: Fluid needs can vary greatly between individuals and are impacted by individual physical activity level as well as local climate. As a good baseline, people should aim to drink half of their body weight in ounces of water daily as well as keep their electrolyte levels in balance to maintain optimal cellular hydration. Recent studies document that moderate coffee consumption can contribute to our total fluid intake and does not lead to dehydration or significant loss of body water. This is great news for coffee drinkers everywhere!
- Mild diuretic - no dehydrating effect: Since black coffee contains more than 95% water, it does not inherently have a dehydrating effect. While its caffeine may have a small diuretic effect, this effect is not strong enough to counteract the benefits of fluid intake from coffee drinking. Studies point to this diuretic effect being strongest in people who don't regularly drink caffeine, then subsequently consume high amounts of it. Daily moderate coffee consumption tends to mitigate this diuretic effect.
- Does not contribute to dehydration during exercise: The Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research found that not only is moderate caffeine intake helpful for endurance performance, it does not contribute to body dehydration during physical exercise. This is great news!
Coffee drinkers can celebrate! Despite what doctors or other professionals have told you previously, advice to refrain from consuming moderate amounts of caffeinated coffee in order to maintain adequate fluid balance is unsubstantiated. Moderate use means It's best to limit your daily coffee intake to three to five 8-ounce cups a day (or up to 400 milligrams of caffeine daily) to avoid excessive caffeine side effects. And, of course, make sure you're sourcing your coffee from our organic, mold-free Cardiology Coffee and using pure water to brew. We recommend the Pristine Hydro water filtration system for best results.
This post contains affiliate links. Click here to read our affiliate policy.