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Should You Drink Coffee on an Empty Stomach?

Coffee is actually such a popular beverage that its consumption levels come second only to water in several countries (1Trusted Source).

On top of making you feel less tired and more alert, the caffeine in coffee may improve the mood of yours, brain function, and physical exercise performance. This may also boost weight loss and protect against illnesses as type two diabetes, Alzheimer’s, and heart disease (2Trusted Source, 3Trusted Source).

Lots of people enjoy drinking coffee first thing the next day. Nevertheless, some folks state that having it on an empty stomach may damage the overall health of yours.

This article discusses whether you need to drink coffee on an empty stomach.

tattooed person drinking coffee at a table

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Couple drinking coffee Does it cause digestive issues?

Study shows that coffee’s bitterness may stimulate the production of stomach acid (4Trusted Source, 5Trusted Source).

As a result, lots of people think that coffee irritates the stomach of yours, worsens symptoms of gut disorders like irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), and causes heartburn, acid reflux, nausea, ulcers, and indigestion.

Some people suggest that drinking the cup of yours of joe on an empty stomach is particularly harmful since there is no other food present to keep the acid from damaging your stomach lining.

Nevertheless, research fails to find a strong link between digestive troubles and coffee – regardless of whether you consume it on an empty stomach (6Trusted Source).

While a small proportion of folks are incredibly vulnerable to coffee and regularly experience heartburn, vomiting, and indigestion, the frequency and severity of these symptoms remain constant regardless of whether they consume it on an empty stomach or perhaps with food (7Trusted Source).

Nonetheless, it is crucial that you focus on just how your body responds. In case you experience digestive issues after drinking coffee on an empty stomach but not when drinking it with a meal, consider adjusting your intake accordingly.


Coffee increases the production of stomach acid but does not seem to cause digestive issues for most folks. Therefore, drinking it on an empty stomach is perfectly fine.

 Does it raise stress hormone levels?

Another common argument is actually that drinking coffee on an empty stomach may boost levels of the stress hormone cortisol.

Cortisol is actually created by the adrenal glands of yours as well as helps regulate metabolism, blood pressure, and blood sugar levels. Nevertheless, chronically excessive levels are able to bring about health problems, including bone loss, high blood pressure, type two diabetes, and heart disease (eight).

Cortisol levels naturally peak around the time you wake up, decline over the day, and peak again during the first phases of sleep (9Trusted Source).

Interestingly, coffee stimulates cortisol production. Consequently, some folks claim that drinking it first thing in the morning, when cortisol levels are already high, can be dangerous.

Nevertheless, cortisol production in response to coffee appears much lower among individuals that drink it frequently, and some studies show no rise in cortisol at all. Additionally, there is very little evidence to suggest that drinking coffee on a full stomach reduces this response (9Trusted Source, 10Trusted Source).

What is more, even in case you do not drink it often, any increase in cortisol levels appears to be brief.

There is very little reason to believe that such a short peak would lead to long term health complications (9Trusted Source).

To put it briefly, the bad effects of chronically high levels of this hormone may result from a health disorder as Cushing’s syndrome than from your coffee consumption.


Coffee may cause a temporary increase in the stress hormone cortisol. Nevertheless, this’s not likely to result in health problems, regardless of whether you consume it on an empty stomach or even with food.

Other potential side effects Coffee may also have a couple of negative side effects, regardless of whether you consume it on an empty stomach.

For example, caffeine may be addictive, and some people’s genetics may make them especially vulnerable to it (11Trusted Source, 12Trusted Source).

That is because regular coffee intake is able to alter the brain chemistry of yours, requiring progressively larger quantities of caffeine to produce the same effects (13Trusted Source).

Drinking excessive amounts may result in anxiety, heart palpitations, restlessness, and worsened panic attacks. It might actually lead to headaches, migraines, and high blood pressure in some individuals (1Trusted Source, 14Trusted Source, 15Trusted Source).

Because of this, most experts agree that you need to cap the caffeine intake of yours at around 400 mg each day – the equivalent of 4 5 cups (0.95 1.12 liters) of coffee (sixteen, 17Trusted Source).

Because the effects of its are able to last as much as seven hours in adults, coffee may also disrupt the sleep of yours, especially in case you drink it late in the day (1Trusted Source).

Finally, caffeine are able to easily cross the placenta, and the effects of its can last as much as sixteen hours longer than normal in females that are pregnant and the babies of theirs. Hence, females that are pregnant are actually urged to limit their coffee intake to 1 2 cups (240 480 ml) each day (1Trusted Source, eighteen).

Remember that drinking coffee on an empty stomach does not seem to affect the strength or perhaps frequency of these effects.