It's not the world's best kept secret and I'm sure by now that we all know caffeine keeps those cravings at bay (good girl), but I read something recently that made me think it could all be a lie.
And that's a pretty strong statement.
Yes, scientifically, caffeine has been proven to suppress one's appetite, but there's just something about the whole idea that just seems a little off to me.
So, typically speaking, if I were to take my tea and coffee habit up a notch, would I forget all about that 3pm chocolate craving? I highly doubt it. It's pretty impossible to knock that on a good day, but I have this feeling that upping my caffeine intake will only cause my sugar cravings to skyrocket, not disappear.
You see, I'm sensitive to sugar. It's like I have this inner guardian angel that knows I shouldn't like it and does its best to keep me away. And it works. Full-fat fizzy drinks and anything added-sugar just doesn't cut it with me.
Now, if I were to add say, an extra cup or two of coffee to my daily diet, what would it do? My recent readings lead to me believe that, although claims of a reduced appetite could be true, the reverse is almost always destined to happen.
I have to say could here, because the way in which we respond to coffee does depend on our genetic makeup, the type of coffee we drink, when we drink it and of course, how often - but you knew that already.
It's the initial reaction to caffeine that got me thinking. On intake, it lowers the blood sugar and what does the body do when it's in this state - crave sugar of course! So if you've ever had to dive for the Green & Blacks after your last latte, you'll know exactly what I'm talking about. Is it a side effect you were expecting?
I have to say, I feel a little robbed. All of those years I spent really believing that caffeine had a thing with our appetites were a sham - all this time, it's just been masquerading as a suppressant.
Now, I'm sure to some, it may just do its thing and kick the cravings like no other - but knowing that there is a correlation with a need for more sugar just really blows that out of the water for me.
Yes there is the instant energy boost, brain stimulation and increase in metabolism (even if it is temporary), which means we're likely to be a winner at work in the mornings, but the fear of that sweet tooth factor puts it all in perspective.
Experts have been on the fence for years. Some say yes, some are always a firm no and others are impartial, but how about you - are you a fan of the caffeine craze? Or have you spotted those same sugar urges as I have?