So Is Coffee Good Or Bad For Asthma
Most of us drink coffee, asthmatic or not, it is one of the most commonly consumed beverages in the world. However, as asthmatics, coffee might have more of an impact on our physiologies that others who drink it. It has caffeine that works as a mild self-medication however, its acidity could be a potential complication.
It’s best to learn a little more about the brew that you’re swigging in the morning. Where the beans are from, maybe how dark the roast. It might be good, but is it the best that you could be drinking? With a little information and a bit of research, you could unlock that perfect cup for your taste buds, that hazy morning head, and your lungs.
Criteria For Considering Studies For This Review
Types of studies
We included randomised trials only.
Types of participants
We included adults with previously documented asthma of any level of severity.
Types of interventions
We included the following comparisons:
oral caffeine versus placebo and
coffee versus decaffeinated coffee.
Types of outcome measures
We did not use outcome measures to decide if a study was eligible for inclusion in the review.
We did not include challenge test data in this review.
Lung function outcomes used were: forced expiratory volume in one second , maximum midexpiratory flow and specific airway conductance
Exhaled nitric oxide concentration
Maximal expiratory flow rates at 25% and 50% of vital capacity
Side effects and adverse effects.
Balancing Acidity And Caffeine
If you are prone to acid reflux, then a lower acidity, dark roast, might be your best cup. However, it will come with less of that caffeine kick we like to experience in the morning. Seeing as it is not recommended to try and manage asthma with caffeine anyway, it might be wise for asthmatics to limit the number of light roasts we consume. If you are drinking coffee from a specific region because you really love the flavor, maybe check to see what the acidity of that coffee is.
Also, a tip from a fellow asthmatic coffee lover: I make my cold brew coffee with alkaline water to counter some of the acidity of the coffee I’m using. This way I can get great flavor, with lower acidity and a good amount of caffeine.
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Sinusitis And Other Upper Respiratory Infections
Much like asthma causes inflammation in the lining of your airways, sinusitis causes inflammation in the mucus membranes that line your sinuses. This makes the membranes put out more mucus. If you have asthma and your sinuses get inflamed, your airways may too. Prompt treatment of a sinus infection can relieve asthma symptoms.
Food Allergies And Sensitivities
Although a lot of food allergies start in childhood, you can develop them as an adult too.
Some of the most common food allergens are gluten , shellfish, eggs, milk, tree nuts, peanuts, sesame seeds, and soya.
Some food allergies, such as allergies to milk and eggs, are more common in children.
People with food allergies need to be strict about avoiding certain foods. Allergic reactions to food can happen very quickly. A severe allergic reaction can be life-threatening.
Reactions to food can quickly bring on asthma symptoms too, like wheezing, coughing and breathing difficulties.
An anaphylactic reaction and an asthma attack can look similar. If you have both a food allergy and asthma, and are in any doubt about your symptoms, use your auto-injector pen and get help straight away.
You can also find out more about particular food allergies on the NHS website.
you’re having a severe allergic reaction or
you’re having an asthma attack and your blue reliever isn’t helping or
you’re not sure if your symptoms are an allergic reaction, or an asthma attack.
Being sensitive to certain foods is not the same as a true allergy. Theres less clear-cut evidence to show a link to asthma symptoms. However, it could be that some of the chemicals and ingredients in food and drink products trigger asthma symptoms.
The most common food sensitivities that can trigger asthma symptoms are:
Caffeinated Tea Or Coffee
The caffeine in black or green tea and coffee is believed to help treat asthma. It works similarly to the popular asthma medication theophylline, which opens up the airways.
A 2010 research review, the most recent available, found that caffeine may slightly improve breathing function in people with asthma for up to 4hours.
Still, there isnt enough evidence to show whether caffeine can improve asthma symptoms.
Is Coffee Good Or Bad For Asthma
. Hereof, does caffeine make asthma worse?
Clinical studies have shown that caffeine is a weak bronchodilator, improving lung function for two to four hours after it is consumed. This would make it unsafe to use caffeine as an asthma treatment. This is because when consumed in very large doses, caffeine can cause unwanted side effects.
Similarly, what should I avoid if I have asthma? Foods To Avoid With Asthma
- Tree nuts.
In this regard, is coffee good for asthma?
Caffeine is found in coffee, tea, cola drinks and cocoa. Caffeine is a drug that is very similar to theophylline. Theophylline is a bronchodilator drug that is taken to open up the airways in the lungs and therefore relieve the symptoms of asthma, such as wheezing, coughing and breathlessness.
Why does caffeine stop asthma attacks?
The Claim: A Cup of Coffee can Ease the Symptoms of AsthmaThe suspicion stems in part from its chemical structure, which resembles that of theophylline, a common asthma medication that relaxes the airway muscles and relieves wheezing, shortness of breath and other respiratory problems.
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Know The Caffeine Content Of Foods
With this in mind, its important to know what other foods have caffeine in them. Chocolate does have caffeine in it, and according to the Asthma Foundation, two chocolate bars would have a similar effect. No one is saying exactly how much caffeine you need to stop an asthma attack but if you take a look at the difference in caffeine between coffee and chocolate, you will find quite a difference in the amount of caffeine.
Risk Of Bias In Included Studies
Complete agreement was reached by the review authors for both assessments. See for ‘Risk of bias’ tables for individual studies and for an overview.
‘Risk of bias’ summary: review authors’ judgements about each risk of bias item for each included study.
All the papers stated that the trials were randomised. One trial reported computerised sequence generation which was judged to have a low risk of bias , while the remaining six trials were unclear. Two trials reported adequate allocation concealment while the remaining five were unclear.
All the studies were described as doubleblind. Blinding of the patient is important so that they put the same effort into lung function testing regardless of intervention, however they would presumably be able to detect if they had ingested any caffeine due to side effects. Five studies were judged to have a low risk of bias with respect to blinding . None of the papers described blinding of the investigator administering the caffeine or placebo to the patient or the investigator taking the outcome readings.
Incomplete outcome data
Since the trials took place over relatively short time frames there were few dropouts and only one missing data point throughout all the studies. All trials were judged to be of low risk of bias with respect to dealing with incomplete data.
Other potential sources of bias
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Side Effects Of Coffee On Asthma
The side effects of coffee are actually also similar to theophylline: nausea, trouble sleeping, increased urination, irritability, and headaches. However, coffee has a quality that theophylline does not, which may cause further complications to our asthma, that’s acidity.
Coffee typically has a pH between 4.6 and 4.3, making it quite an acidic way to start the morning. Especially when our stomach is empty. Depending on your breakfast you might be starting your gut out with and acidic blast, and that’s GERDs or ‘acid refluxs’, best friend. Acid reflux is already a common complication for asthmatics often accompanying a flare as a trigger or as a side exacerbation. So, although coffee is one of the ways we think we manage our asthma, it could a double-edged sword that is getting us in the end.
Caffeine Is A Mild Bronchodilator
Modern evidence suggests that caffeine, when it is metabolized by the liver, forms low doses of theophylline. This might help explain the benefits of caffeine for asthma.3-5
As a side note here, caffeine is also metabolized into theobromine, a component of cocoa and chocolate. Its also a member of the methylxanthine family. This would explain why chocolate tends to make people happy. It has been shown to be an equal bronchodilator to caffeine, although not quite as strong as theophylline. Theobromine has actually been shown to be a good cough suppressant, too.6
One study showed that 5 mg/kg of caffeine reached a peak bronchodilator effect in 2 hours and lasted for six hours. This means that a 200-pound man like myself would require 450 mg of caffeine.7
To put this into perspective, two tablespoons of Folgers ground coffee contains 60-80 mg of coffee. This makes two 8 ounce cups of coffee.8
So, we would have to consume 5-8 cups of coffee at breakfast time to achieve the desired bronchodilator effect for the first six hours of your day. Then around 2 or 3 p.m., wed have to drink up again.
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Overall Completeness And Applicability Of Evidence
Comparison of the findings across studies was complicated by the use of five different doses of caffeine, different outcome measures recorded at different times, and different methods of reporting outcomes. To permit the aggregation of data we grouped the trials according to dose and time. Similarly, we made analyses using the SMD where the combined trials used different units of measurement for the same variable. Despite this, few data were available to be combined in the metaanalysis.
The dose of caffeine tested varied greatly between studies, from 5 to 10 mg/kg. In an effort to make this more meaningful in dietary terms, most authors related doses to cups of coffee. However, the average amount of caffeine per cup is quoted as between 30 to 150 mg, although 150 mg was most commonly stated. Consequently, the number of cups of coffee required to produce bronchodilation is reported from one to five cups.
The findings of any review are only applicable to the characteristics of the participants taking part in the included studies. Although a standardised definition was not used across the studies, participants were described as having mild or moderate asthma, therefore results may not be generalisable to those with more severe asthma. Most subjects were described as having stable or asymptomatic asthma, but how this was assessed was not described. Similarly, patients’ treatment regimens varied greatly across the trials and the effect of this was not studied.
Summary Of Main Results
For all dose strengths, caffeine compared to placebo was found to significantly improve lung function measured in terms of FEV1, FEF2575 and Gaw/VL for up to two hours post ingestion. This effect was sustained for FEF2575 for over four hours. Improvement was also seen in FEV1 up to this time, however this effect did not reach statistical significance. No data were available for Gaw/VL after two hours. Bronchodilation was also seen after ingesting caffeine even following a ‘low’ dose . For FEV1, the difference between the caffeine and placebo groups was not significant after two hours. In contrast, for FEF2575 the effect was clear at all times, even over four hours. A clear increase following a ‘high’ dose of caffeine compared to placebo was seen in FEV1, FEF2575 and Gaw/VL at up to two hours only. Gaw/VL outcomes were not recorded beyond two hours. At two hours, at all doses, there was an improvement in lung function after ingesting caffeine, and when reported as % increase in FEV1 this showed an average difference of 5% change . However when the study on patients who were asymptomatic and on no treatment was excluded, the change in FEV1 was higher after caffeine .
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Written by Anuradha Varanasi | Updated : April 29, 2016 10:43 AM IST
The national burden of asthma cases in India is estimated to be as high as 17.23 million patients, says a recent study conducted by the Epidemiology of Asthma, Respiratory Symptoms and Chronic Bronchitis in 2015 . Asthma can cause restrictions in one s daily activities due to lung function impairment due to which patients tend to have a reduced quality of life. In fact, there are about 489,000 deaths globally which are attributed to asthma annually . Did you know, asthma increases the risk of suffering from nearsightedness at young age?
During an asthma attack, the lining of the airways becomes swollen or inflamed which is caused by the tightening of muscles around the airways. The symptoms of asthma include severe wheezing, rapid breathing, coughing, and difficulty talking. While the first aid of asthma usually involves making the patient sit upright and loosening tight clothing along with using an inhaler, what does one do in a situation where an inhaler isn t available? If the symptoms of asthma are ignored for too long, it could result in the patient developing bluish lips and they could eventually lose their ability to talk because of low oxygen levels in the blood. At this point, the wheezing also stops and if the patient isn t rushed to a hospital immediately, the patient may lose consciousness or eventually die. These are the 10 facts about asthma you should know.
Search Methods For Identification Of Studies
We identified trials using the Cochrane Airways Group Specialised Register of trials , which is derived from systematic searches of bibliographic databases including the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials , MEDLINE, EMBASE, CINAHL, AMED and PsycINFO, and handsearching of respiratory journals and meeting abstracts . We searched all records in the Specialised Register coded as ‘asthma’ using the following terms:
caffeine* or *caffeine or coffee or tea or chocolate or cola.
We did not exclude trials on the basis of language. We searched the CAGR up to August 2011.
Searching other resources
We reviewed reference lists of all primary studies and review articles for additional references.
We contacted authors of identified trials and asked them to identify other published and unpublished studies.
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What Else Ways To Prevent Asthma Recurrence
Apart from drinking coffee in moderation and regularly, according to dr. Sara Elise Wijono, MRes from KlikDokter, the two most important things that asthma sufferers can do to reduce the frequency of recurrence is to recognize asthma triggers and avoid them. By avoiding triggers, asthma symptoms will not appear.
The triggers that must be avoided by asthma sufferers include:
- Furry animal.
- Cleaning activities without respiratory protection .
- The air is too cold.
In addition, also avoid respiratory infections, including flu. Because, not only makes asthma recur, the infection can also worsen the condition of your lung organs as a whole.
Therefore, it would be better if infection is prevented by diligently washing hands with soap, avoiding people who are experiencing respiratory tract infections, maintaining oral hygiene, and getting vaccinations.
The benefits of coffee for asthma sufferers are hard to miss. But remember, stick to the safe limits of drinking coffee per day and also avoid the factors that trigger the asthma reaction mentioned above. Also balance with exercise so that lung capacity increases and continues to consume nutritious foods so that the bodys endurance is always maintained.
How Do You Know If Food Is One Of Your Asthma Triggers
If you think certain foods trigger your asthma symptoms or your childs symptoms, talk to your GP or asthma nurse as soon as possible. This is important because an asthma attack triggered by an allergic reaction to food can be worse, particularly for children.
Your GP or asthma nurse can help you work out if youre allergic or sensitive to certain foods. They can:
- refer you for an allergy test to confirm or rule out any food allergies, usually a skin prick test
- help you identify foods youre sensitive to that dont show up in allergy tests by supporting you to keep a food and symptom diary, which you can review at your appointment
- support you in excluding certain foods or food groups for a while, and reintroducing them safely to see which foods trigger asthma symptoms
- confirm or rule out anything else which could be making your asthma worse, such as acid reflux
- update your asthma action plan with new food triggers, and any action you need to take if your asthma symptoms are triggered by food.
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Any time the weather is nice in North Texas, it seems nearly everyone wants to get outside and get active. Everyone that is, except the more than 26 million Americans who suffer from asthma. According to the CDC, a large percentage of these folks around 60 percent limit their physical activity because of their disease.
The fear of an attack that many asthma sufferers feel is real: in 2015 the CDC reported 1.7 million ER visits and 9.6 million doctor and clinic visits with asthma as the primary diagnosis. In fact, asthma is a leading cause of child emergency room visits and hospitalizations, as well as missed school days.
In 2016, 3,518 people died from asthma.
Those alarming statistics shouldn’t sideline asthma sufferers. In fact, physical activity is necessary to build and maintain lung capacity and function. The key is getting your symptoms under control with medical care and avoiding your triggers.