By John Salak –
Morning time may be coffee time but that doesn’t mean your first mug of joe should come before eating something, especially if it’s following a bad night’s sleep. In fact, researchers at Britain’s University of Bath warn that a cup of strong black coffee immediately after a night of poor sleep could harm a person’s blood glucose levels and controls.
Keeping blood sugar levels within a safe range is no trivial matter. It helps reduce the risk of conditions such as diabetes and heart disease.
The university’s findings are based on an experiment including 29 healthy men and women that involved three different scenarios. After a normal night’s sleep, these individuals were asked to consume a sugary drink upon waking. On another occasion after a continually interrupted night’s sleep, they again had a sugary drink first thing in the morning. The third trial involved being given black coffee immediately after waking from a fitful night before having a sugary drink 30 minutes later.
Blood samples were taken after each night and coffee and/or sugary drink consumption to measure glucose levels. Past findings have shown that chronic loss of sleep over repeated night can have an adverse impact on a person’s metabolic rates. However, these latest findings showed that one night of disrupted sleep didn’t adversely blood sugar levels unless black coffee was immediately introduced. In that case, blood glucose rose about 50 percent when followed by breakfast.
“This new study therefore reveals that the common remedy of drinking coffee after a bad night’s sleep may solve the problem of feeling sleepy but could create another by limiting your body’s ability to tolerate the sugar in your breakfast,” the university reported when releasing the study.
“Put simply, our blood sugar control is impaired when the first thing our bodies come into contact with is coffee especially after a night of disrupted sleep. We might improve this by eating first and then drinking coffee later if we feel we still feel the need it. Knowing this can have important health benefits for us all.” said Professor James Betts, Co-Director of the Centre for Nutrition, Exercise and Metabolism at the university.
It is unlikely that any research will undercut the link between coffee and the morning. In fact, Americans on average drink over 3 cups of coffee each day, amounting to 66 billion cups a year.
Betts and his colleagues, however, are just toying with the idea of what should come first. The coffee or the egg (sandwich).