web analytics
December 18, 2014 / 26 Kislev, 5775
 
At a Glance
Sections
Sponsored Post
8000 meals Celebrate Eight Days of Chanukah – With 8,000 Free Meals Daily to Israel’s Poor

Join Meir Panim’s campaign to “light up” Chanukah for families in need.



Cup of Joe: A Cure For Anxiety And Depression?


Schonfeld-logo1

Coffee.
Java.
Café.
Brew.
Cappuccino.
Joe.
Espresso.
Mud.

 

 

We have so many words for coffee, and for so many of us, it is an essential part of our day. It wakes us up in the morning, and gives us a jolt of energy during an afternoon slump. We add ice and milk for a refreshing drink in the summer. But, what is coffee exactly? And, should we really be drinking it?

Coffee is made from the roasted or baked seeds of several species of an evergreen shrub. Once they are ripe, coffee berries are picked, processed, and dried to yield the seeds inside. Depending on the heat of the roasting, the seeds have different flavors. Those roasted seeds are then ground and brewed to produce coffee.

Coffee is acidic and has caffeine, which is the key ingredient we will be focusing on. Caffeine is a naturally occurring stimulant called trimethylxanthine. It stimulates the central nervous system and temporarily wards off drowsiness. A German chemist, Friedrich Ferdinand Runge, discovered caffeine in 1819. He called the compound “kaffein,” which later became “caffeine” in English.

Numerous studies have been performed to figure out whether caffeine has a positive or negative effect (or no effect at all) on those who drink it in moderation. For those who have anxiety or depression, the studies’ findings are particularly relevant.

 

Caffeine and Anxiety

There are multiple types of anxiety disorders. Two of the most common struggles with anxiety are panic disorder and generalized anxiety disorder.

Panic disorder is accompanied by panic attacks, which include feelings of fear and dread that come with no warning. Those feelings are associated with sweating, chest pain, irregular heartbeats, and trouble breathing. Many times, the sufferer mistakes these panic attacks for heart attacks.

Generalized Anxiety Disorder is the least specific, but perhaps one of the most prevalent. People with generalized anxiety disorder feel severe tension and worry even when there is little or nothing to provoke that fear.

When it comes to caffeine and anxiety, caffeine has often gotten a bad rap. For years, people assumed that caffeine causes anxiety, perhaps because it causes increased heart rate and “the jitters,” which people can confuse with a panic attack.

Caffeine in excess can cause problems such as upset stomach, muscle tremors, and insomnia. But, in moderation, caffeine might even have some benefits – to those who suffer from anxiety as well! A quick caveat: in this article, when I refer to anxiety, I am referring to the most prevalent anxiety disorder – generalized anxiety disorder – not those with panic attacks.

The New York Times health section recently outlined caffeine’s benefits on one’s state of mind. In moderation (under 200 milligrams per day – the amount in a 16-ounce coffee), participants in several caffeine-related studies, including studies done by the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine and by Harvard University reported:

  • Enhanced sense of well-being, happiness, and energy, alertness, and sociability.
  • Improved memory and the ability to problem solve.
  • Greater endurance when exercising.
  • Decreased risk of getting Type 2 diabetes and Parkinson’s Disease.

 

The first three points are all easily correlated with anxiety. If you have an enhanced sense of well-being and sociability, you are less likely to be anxious. If you are better able to problem solve, you will be less anxious. And, research clearly shows that exercise decreases anxiety.

The bottom line: If you suffer from generalized anxiety disorder, it might be a good idea to have your morning coffee. Aside from that temporary lift, your body might experience surprising benefits that combat anxiety.

If you are experiencing panic attacks, that is another story. Since caffeine speeds your heart rate and stimulates your central nervous system, these side effects can feel like triggers for those who suffer from panic attacks. Therefore, for those suffering from panic attacks, caffeine can be a very bad idea.

About the Author: An acclaimed educator and education consultant, Mrs. Rifka Schonfeld has served the Jewish community for close to thirty years. She founded and directs the widely acclaimed educational program, SOS, servicing all grade levels in secular as well as Hebrew studies. A kriah and reading specialist, she has given dynamic workshops and has set up reading labs in many schools. In addition, she offers evaluations G.E.D. preparation,, social skills training and shidduch coaching, focusing on building self-esteem and self-awareness. She can be reached at 718-382-5437 or at rifkaschonfeld@verizon.net. Visit her on the web at rifkaschonfeldsos.com.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

2 Responses to “Cup of Joe: A Cure For Anxiety And Depression?”

  1. Coffee ! I have used it for years now , and it has not hurt me at all !

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
PM Binyamin Netanyahu lights Hanukkah candles in Jerusalem.
Netanyahu Warns Israel ‘Will Not Allow’ PA’s UN Resolution to Endanger Israelis
Latest Sections Stories
book-elisha-davidson

Written with flowing language and engaging style, Attar weaves a spell that combines mystery, humor, adventure and Kabbalah in the most magical place in the world, the Old City of erusalem.

book-path-for-life

There are those who highlight the diversity of these different teachings, seeing each rebbe as teaching a separate path.

South-Florida-logo

Rav Dynovisz will be speaking in Hebrew on Wednesday, January 7, at 7:30 p.m.

South-Florida-logo

Rabbi Simeon Schreiber, senior chaplain at Mount Sinai Medical Center in Miami Beach, saw a small room in the hospital that was dark and dismal but could be used for Sabbath guests.

“The secret to a good donut is using quality ingredients and the ability to be patient and give them time to proof.”

I so desperately want to have a loving relationship with my stepsons.

The Liberty Bell is a symbol of American Independence.

Because you can’t have kids pouring huge jugs of oil into tiny glasses, unless you want to turn your house into an environmental disaster.

Try these with your kids; there’s something for every age group and once all the recipes are made, dinner will be ready!

You children will build the country and you will help restore Israel to her former glory.

Bais Toras Menachem is proud to welcome its new staff member, Yaakov Mark, who will be the Administrator as well as Ort College and GED class coordinator.

Because she is keenly aware that anti-Semitism may start with the Jews but never ends with the Jews, she makes the logical connection between the opprobrium for both America and Israel so commonplace on the political left.

In this narrative of history, it is the third world Palestinians who are victims of the marauding Jews, of course.

More Articles from Rifka Schonfeld
Schonfeld-logo1

Children develop at different rates – they say their first words, take their first steps, toilet train, read their first word, and lose their first tooth at different times.

Schonfeld-112814

Once you understand why you are lying, you might be better able to tell the truth.

This core idea of memory is very difficult to fully comprehend; however, it is essential.

Do you love your children? Of course, who doesn’t? Maybe I should rephrase the question: Do your children feel that you love them?

“Without a high school diploma, you couldn’t work as a garbage collector in New York City; you couldn’t join the Air Force. Yet a quarter of our kids still walked out of high school and never came back.”
– Amanda Ridley

Avromi often put other people’s interests before his own: he would not defend people whom he believed were guilty (even if they were willing to pay him a lot of money).

Social disabilities occur at many levels, but experts identify three different areas of learning and behavior that are most common for children who struggle to create lasting social connections.

Brown argues that this wholehearted living must extend into our parenting.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/sections/family/parenting-our-children/cup-of-joe-a-cure-for-anxiety-and-depression/2014/05/09/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: