Should I worry about caffeine and my morning supplements?
As a Nutritional Therapist, I often get asked about minerals and B-vitamins with caffeine consumption. Is it true my morning caffeine is depleting my minerals and B-vitamins? Should I wait to take my supplements until I have finished my coffee? The short answer, Yes!
All the research I can find states that per 150 mg (one cup-ish) of caffeine roughly 5 mg of calcium is lost. This is mainly due to increased urination. We know that when calcium is lost through urine the parathyroid jumps all over returning blood calcium to homeostasis. Caffeine also inhibits the amount of calcium that is absorbed through the intestinal tract and decreasing the amount left to be retained by the bones. So, if you are an all-day coffee drinker, over time you may in fact see some negative effects. Studies have shown that women with high caffeine intake suffer more hip fractures than those who avoid caffeine or drink in moderation (1 to 2 cups per day).
Magnesium is a crucial mineral that works with calcium and vitamin D to facilitate the muscle contraction-relaxation response and aid in energy production; it also plays a key role in more than 300 enzymatic reactions in the body. Therefore, depletion due to coffee intake can be worrisome.
Caffeine interferes with the body’s absorption of iron, which is necessary for red blood cell production. Drinking caffeine at the same time as an iron source can reduce absorption by up to 80%, according to the Nutrition Desk Reference. Any beverage containing caffeine should be separated from iron-containing foods or supplements by at least one hour.
Given that caffeine has a mild diuretic effect, we end up with increased urine output. Water soluble B vitamins can become depleted due to this extra fluid loss. Caffeine also interferes with the metabolism of certain B vitamins including Thiamin (B1). Oddly enough, research shows the opposite to be true with Cobalamin (B12). Caffeine stimulates the production of stomach acid which promotes the absorption of B12.
Caffeine inhibits vitamin D receptors, which limit the amount that will be absorbed. Because vitamin D is important in the absorption and use of calcium in building bone, this could also decrease bone mineral density, resulting in an increased risk for osteoporosis.
Other Vitamins and Minerals
Caffeine may reduce the absorption of manganese, zinc, and copper. It also increases the excretion of the minerals potassium, sodium, and phosphate. There is also evidence that caffeine interferes with the action of vitamin A.
While there are many positive effects and plenty of healthful compounds in coffee, tea, and dark chocolate, be smart about consumption. If you do find you are deficient in any of the nutrients or want to be proactive here is a supplement guide of Biotics Research products.
Mineral deficiencies can come up quick, but are easy enough to get under control. Muscle cramps like Charlie horses are a slam dunk you have a mineral deficiency. These are my top choices.
Bio-CMP™ A special electrolyte mineral blend of calcium, magnesium, and potassium, designed to support muscular function. Each Bio-CMP™ tablet contains: 200 mg of Calcium Gluconate, 100 mg of Magnesium Gluconate, 100 mg of Potassium Chloride.
Multi-Mins™ Provides a balance source of mineral chelates and whole food, phytochemically bound trace minerals, with Betaine HCI to facilitate absorption, combined with the antioxidant enzymes SOD and catalase. ***Also available in FE/CU free formula.
Ca/Mg-Zyme™ Supplies calcium citrate (300 mg) and magnesium aspartate (60 mg) in a ratio of five parts to one (per 6 tablets) together with the vegetable culture antioxidant enzymes superoxide dismutase (SOD) and catalase.
Fe-Zyme™ A source of supplemental iron in a highly bioavailable form, combined with synergist known to assist with uptake and utilization. Note: Copper, zinc, and B12 are added to the formula because these are the cofactors known to be needed to utilize iron properly by the body. Because of its synergistic formula and the high bioavailability of Fe-Zyme™ there is a much lower incidence of the typical stomach upset experienced by most other iron supplements.
B-Vitamin deficiencies can be all over the place, head to toe. Nerve pain, fatigue, confusion, depression, numbness in hands and feet, digestive issues, anxiety, nausea, and so on, and on, and on. Depending on the severity of the deficiency, here are some choices to assist in bring up optimal B levels.
Bio-B Complex™ A high potency vitamin B complex with Superoxide Dismutase (SOD) and catalase. For short-term use (up to 30 days) with recovery from serious debilitation.
Bio-B 100™ A low-dose, multiple B vitamin complex supplying the phosphorylated forms of vitamins B1, B2, and B6, along with the antioxidant enzymes Superoxide Dismutase (SOD) and catalase.
B6/B1 Plus Zinc Supplies active forms of these important B vitamins, along with a highly bioavailable form of the essential mineral zinc. B6 and B1 are especially important for proper function of nervous system function, and over 300 different enzymes are dependent on zinc to function properly.
When it comes to fat soluble vitamins, Biotics Research products lead the pack. Our oil-in-water emulsion process is what makes Biotics a step above the rest.
Bio-ADEK-Mulsion™ supplies vitamins A, D3, E, and K (as K1 and K2) in a true oil and water emulsion, resulting in enhanced bioavailability and utilization via the lymphatic system without the use of “tweens” and surfactants that may damage cell membranes and result in gut permeability.
Lastly, please don't do anything drastic like stopping your morning coffee routine! That would be going too far! Even for me! This is just a little insight to a question that comes up quite a bit. I just wanted to clear things up for the everyone.
Melanie Figeley, NTP
Biotics Research NW
Customer Success Manager
Blood Chemistry Fundamentals