Does Coffee Dehydrate You? Time For Some Myth-Busting!
5 Minute Read

Does Coffee Dehydrate You? Time For Some Myth-Busting!

HealthyStripe's Editorial Team
21 October 2021

Do you love a cup of coffee now and then? Who doesn’t, right? But some people say it isn’t good for hydration. Why? Does coffee make you thirsty? Does coffee dehydrate you? If yes, how does coffee cause dehydration?

The answer is ‘yes’ and ‘no’ to all these questions. Don’t worry, we’ll clarify this later in the article, but before that, we need to understand coffee a bit better. 

The main reason most of us drink a cup of joe is because of its caffeine – a psychoactive substance. 

When we drink coffee, it takes somewhere around 15 minutes to an hour for the caffeine to get absorbed by our bodies. Caffeine can pass through most membranes in the body and takes very little time to reach our brain cells. It’s when that happens that you feel a jolt of energy you so direly need to conquer the day.

It’s the liver that helps break down caffeine cells. The kidneys help excrete the compounds not metabolized through urine.

But the compounds that did get broken down have a lot to offer you.

Is Coffee Good for Health?

It is! Many people even believe it to be one of the healthiest drinks (or should we call it a super drink?) on the planet. Here are a few perks of coffee you don’t want to miss out on.

1) It improves brain function:

When in the brain, caffeine blocks adenosine – an inhibitory neurotransmitter. The act leads to the release of dopamine and norepinephrine. Both these neurotransmitters are also called happiness hormones. 

A lack of these happiness hormones affects your concentration, increases the risk of ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder), and is also linked to depression. Thanks to caffeine, you can not only avoid these issues but improve your mood, energy, memory, and reaction times, too.

2) It helps burn fat:

Studies show that caffeine increases your metabolic rate by 3-4%. Another reason coffee is effective is because of the boost of energy it offers. This energy helps improve your workout performance, leading you to lose more calories when you exercise.

3) It may help against diabetes:

Did you know coffee is also a source of antioxidants? These compounds help detoxify your body and balance the hormones. One hormone that we should keep in check against type 2 diabetes is insulin. Coffee helps do that and may, therefore, be great for diabetics.

4) It helps protect the liver:

When ingested, caffeine helps create a compound called para-xanthine. This compound helps reduce the growth of scar tissue. Scar tissue usually grows in conditions like cirrhosis and fatty liver disease and may lead to complete damage to the liver. 

5) It possibly increases longevity:

The antioxidants and the energy that come with every cup of joe works on your immunity. They also help you get rid of diseases like type 2 diabetes and obesity. Thus, keeping you alive and energetic for longer.

Want all these health benefits in a delicious way? Try the Choco Coffee Blast recipe mentioned here.

Fact Check: Does Coffee Dehydrate You? And Should You Drink Coffee When Dehydrated?

Nope. Coffee does not dehydrate you. It is caffeine that acts as a diuretic. A diuretic is a substance that promotes urination, thus reducing the water level in your body.

There are several studies on this topic. One study done in 2017 shows that low levels of caffeine do not cause dehydration at rest. But it couldn’t prove if higher doses have a small diuretic effect or not. The low levels of caffeine in this study were approximately 270 mg, and the high level was around 500 mg. 

That’s right! For dehydrating your body, the caffeine amount should be at least 500 mg per day. That’s about 5 cups of coffee. It is too much, and it may be a tad bit dehydrating if you have 5 cups of joe every other day.

But if you are not as addicted to coffee, you should have no worries. For you, coffee is only a source of sassy energy and health, which you should take advantage of. Did you know it is also one of the best keto friendly energy drinks out there?

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In fact, it is not wrong to consider coffee as a source of hydration. After all, every cup is 95% water, isn’t it?

Here’s another study to prove this. Done in 2014, the research shows that when consumed in moderation by males who have a habit of caffeine intake, the drink had similar hydrating qualities to water. 

So, should you drink coffee when dehydrated? Why not?

Is drinking coffee the same as water? Sure!

What happens if you drink only coffee? Well, excess of anything is bad and you don’t want to make a hydration mistake, do you?

It’s time to stop letting doubts come between you and your beloved coffee! Just make sure you consume it in moderation, and you are good to go. 

The Bottom Line

So, does coffee dehydrate you? Whether your coffee is brewed, instant, decaf, or espresso, it is not dehydrating unless you drink it in large amounts. Remember, the little extra push of urine that a cup of joe might give, has no significance if you compare it to the powerhouse of health benefits it offers. 

Have any more myths for us to bust? Comment below!

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