Yes, we’re sorry – it turns out that, if like us, you can’t function without immediately pouring a coffee down your neck when you wake up, you could be impacting your wellbeing.
According to Rex Isap, the sleep expert and CEO at Happy Beds, reaching for a cup of liquid heaven first thing is counterintuitive to your body’s natural responses.
They say: “When it comes to the ideal time to have your first coffee, we might tend to reach for the kettle as soon as we wake up. Ideally, however, you want to wait an hour before waking to truly reap the benefits.”
Why? Well, as Isap explains, when we wake up, our cortisol levels are at their peak.
Cortisol, often associated with stress, enhances your alertness levels. So, drinking caffeine while your cortisol levels are already high can work against this, or even help with gaining a tolerance for caffeine (our worst nightmare, tbh). Ever wondered why you have those coffee jitters immediately after that first cup? It’s probably down to you adding a whole lot of caffiene into the mix.
And it’s not just your cortisol levels that’ll thank you for waiting a bit before knocking back a coffee. As Parvinder Sagoo, pharmacist and Online Health Adviser for SimplyMedsOnline told Glamour: “Caffeine is a diuretic which means you want to urinate more often, however after a night of sleep we need to hydrate not lose even more liquids. I would wait at least an hour after waking up before you have your first coffee of the day.”
And if you were wondering why that afternoon coffee of yours can be risky business for your sleep, it’s all down to a chemical your brain produces called adenosine.
“During the day, your brain produces adenosine. Essentially, this promotes sleep; as you are awake longer, it builds up and helps you feel sleepy,” Isap explains.
“However, caffeine blocks the adenosine receptors, which keeps you alert and promotes wakefulness. If you have ever struggled with sleeping after a coffee, this could be why.”
URGH FINE, we’ll at least try and wait a bit before that first caffeine hit.