If you are one of the 83 percent of adults in the US who drink coffee, you understand the struggle that comes with this glorious addiction. This wonderful beverage makes you have to pee a lot. But why?
Coffee is a Diuretic
A diuretic is any substance that promotes the increased production of urine. So every time you chug a cup of this lovely black liquid, your body responds by producing more urine than what you’re taking in. As a result, you will be forced to take frequent potty breaks, disturbing your productivity.
You produce different hormones to do jobs around your body. The hormones that regulate your water balance are known as ADH (anti-diuretic hormones). They work to keep the amount of water in your blood roughly the same all the time.
When your body senses that you’re running low on water, it registers this as negative feedback. Then your pituitary gland releases ADH that travel through your blood to your kidneys and affect the tubules so more water can be reabsorbed. Tubules are little canals that allow water to go back into your body, keeping you from shriveling up like a raisin.
Caffeine inhibits ADH production, which keeps your body from absorbing the excess water from your kidneys. This means you’ll be visiting the restroom far more than if you were gulping down water.
How Much Coffee Gets Your Pee On?
According to an article in a 2003 issue of “Journal of Human Nutrition and Diet”, 250-300 mg of coffee (the equivalent of two to three cups) is what it takes. If you’re a coffee-holic, this is an easy mark to hit. If you’re a college student, cramming for a final, you’ve probably consumed that amount in the first couple hours of an all-nighter.
Is There a Consequence to Drinking a Diuretic?
If your body’s getting rid of water like it’s going out of style, what does that do to you?
It dehydrates you. If you’re a man, your body is made up of roughly 60 percent water, while ladies are carrying around 55 percent. Flushing away more water than you’re taking in can definitely be detrimental.
But you can’t stop drinking coffee. How can you give it up with all those workdays dragging you out of bed every morning? Adulting is hard, coffee helps.
To counteract that tricky caffeine stealing your precious water, balance the effects with water intake. This will ensure that you’re allowed to continue on with your addiction without turning to dust.
Caffeine squeezes more water out of your body than what’s in your coffee, but only if you binge on it. And most of us do. This results in you peeing like a racehorse with the unfortunate potential to dehydrate as well.
Are you ok with that as long as you have your go-go juice? Most like, yes. Just remember to chug a little extra water, too.