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Does caffeine cause insomnia?

ANSWER

Your body quickly absorbs caffeine. But it also gets rid of it quickly. Processed mainly through the liver, caffeine has a relatively short half-life. This means it takes about five to seven hours, on average, to eliminate half of it from your body. After eight to 10 hours, 75% of the caffeine is gone. For most people, a cup of coffee or two in the morning won't interfere with sleep at night.

Consuming caffeine later in the day, however, can interfere with sleep. If you're like most people, your sleep won't be affected if you don't consume caffeine at least six hours before going to bed. Your sensitivity may vary, though, depending on your metabolism and the amount of caffeine you regularly consume. People who are more sensitive may not only experience insomnia but also have caffeine side effects of nervousness and gastrointestinal upset.

From: Caffeine Myths and Facts WebMD Medical Reference

SOURCES:

International Food Information Council Foundation: "Caffeine & Health: Clarifying the Controversies."

Nutrition Action Health Letter: "Caffeine: The Good, the Bad, and the Maybe."

European Food Information Council (EUFIC): "Myths and Facts about Caffeine."

Johns Hopkins University Bayview Medical Center: "Information About Caffeine Dependence."

Reviewed by Melinda Ratini on April 30, 2017

WAS THIS ANSWER HELPFUL

SOURCES:

International Food Information Council Foundation: "Caffeine & Health: Clarifying the Controversies."

Nutrition Action Health Letter: "Caffeine: The Good, the Bad, and the Maybe."

European Food Information Council (EUFIC): "Myths and Facts about Caffeine."

Johns Hopkins University Bayview Medical Center: "Information About Caffeine Dependence."

Reviewed by Melinda Ratini on April 30, 2017

THIS TOOL DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. It is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and should not be relied on to make decisions about your health. Never ignore professional medical advice in seeking treatment because of something you have read on the WebMD Site. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your doctor or dial 911.

    This tool does not provide medical advice. See additional information.