View Full Version : Can caffeine affect your mood?

11-06-14, 10:11 AM
Since I've started taking stimulants, I switched from coffee to decaf coffee (and by decaf, I mean, 1/2 decaf coffee + 1/2 milk) as initially coffee seemed to give me a big of anxiety. I've recently started having black tea again thinking that the caffeine content of tea is much lower than coffee.

I don't get anxious but I've noticed that I feel a bit unpleasant after having tea (though I could be imagining the correlation), slightly down and dissatisfied.

I've looked up the amount of caffeine in the particular brand I'm having and it seems that decaf coffee has 2-5mg of caffeine per cup and a cup of tea has 25-110mg of caffeine. :umm1: Unfortunately, the machine in my department doesn't have decaf tea.

Anyway, can caffeine (or caffeine + stimulants) affect your mood (apart from anxiety, restlessness, etc.) or have a depressing effect? Is it possible that the low mood is actually a form of anxiety? Could it be the effect of sugar (I never take sugar in my coffee but always in tea).

11-06-14, 03:21 PM
All is possible. I think caffeine + stimulant medication can be a real problem for many people. My partner's doctor told him to stop drinking coffee and tea when he started taking Vyvanse, and I notice that a lot of bad effects crop up when he doesn't abide by that--particularly with strong tea.

11-06-14, 04:00 PM
I would think that anxiety is a "stressor", .. something that can trigger depression. I feel like this stuff is all trial and error and seeing what makes you happy.

The two chemicals don't interact, but still a lot of people have to stop caffeine either temporarily or entirely while on stimulants, particularly for these kinds of mood issues.

11-06-14, 04:09 PM
I found the link and info below regarding the food/mood issue with caffeine and sugar. I definitely notice a difference in my mood swings since I cut out processed sugars, and I think black tea is one of the highest in caffeine content.

Is it possible to make your own vs. having to get it from their machines when you're at work? Or make a lot of whatever you find you like and doesn't effect you negatively at home and put it in a thermos? Do you have organic blends available vs. the mass produced stuff?

Biggest Aggravators of Anxiety

1. Caffeine

Found in coffee, tea, sodas such as colas. It is best to check labels. Also, caffeine is found in dark chocolate, so it's best to cut back on that also. Remember to off of caffeine slowly to avoid withdrawal. You will be pleasantly surprised at the tremendous difference you will feel when you eliminate caffeine from your body.
The effects of caffeine are as follows:

<table width="626" border="0" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0"><tbody><tr valign="TOP" align="LEFT"><td colspan="5" width="603">Anxiety
Racing heart
Irregular heartbeat
Caffeine aggravates the following:

Menopause Symptoms
Tension headaches

Suggestions: Try slowly mixing decaffeinated products with your caffeinated ones. Remove a little more each time, until you've eliminated all the caffeine. Many decaf brands are quite tasty and there are many herbal products that can be fun to experiment with. The results of less caffeine can be profound.
2. Sugar

Sugar is a short-term stimulant. When you are feeling sensitive or vulnerable it's best to cut way back on your sugar intake. You'll find you can move past anxiety much faster. Sugar exacerbates stressful situations. Sugary foods can give you a temporary high, but a quick crash follows. Be sure to read product labels as sugar can be hidden by calling it "dextrose, polydextrose, fructose, maltose, evaporated cane juice." It's all processed sugar.
Too much sugar intake can cause:

Nervous tension
Jittery feeling
Suicidal ideation
Negative thinking
Other negative effects of sugar:

Tooth decay
Gum disease
Depletion of B complex vitamins
Rise of candida in your body
Yeast infections
Rapid cycling of blood sugar levels for those with hypoglycemia or diabetes

Suggestions: Try natural sweet alternatives. Even honey or real maple syrup in moderation are less volatile. Rediscover how delicious fruits can be. Try eating raisins instead of candy. After a while you will notice that foods even lightly sugared taste too sweet. Sugar masks the taste of foods and you may be pleasantly surprised to experience how naturally good your food tastes without the veil of sugar. It is best to cut back on sugar as much as possible.

If you decide to eliminate all processed sugar from your diet (you can still use honey, maple syrup, fruit, and simple carbohydrates in moderation) be aware that eliminating processed sugar causes a feeling similar to drug withdrawal. Be assured, however, that the most intense suffering stops after three days and after two weeks you will feel very little "food craving" which is usually really sugar craving. After two weeks, you'll eat less, feel more positive and dramatically increase your energy.
3. Alcohol

Alcoholic beverages are not a cure for anxiety disorders and some people have been known to self-medicate with a drink. In the long run the effects of alcohol have been proven to be more detrimental than helpful with this condition.
Negative effects of alcohol with anxiety conditions:

Excessive use of alcohol increases anxiety
Adds to hypoglycemic symptoms
Dehydrating effect, dumping vitamins and nutrients in the process
Irritant to liver
Irritant to digestive tract
Candida overgrowth
Yeast in alcohol effects and exacerbates allergies

Suggestions: Nonalcoholic drinks such as club sodas, mineral waters with lemon/lime, flavored seltzers, and there are nonalcoholic beers and wines.
</td></tr></tbody></table><table width="626" border="0" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0"><tbody><tr valign="TOP" align="LEFT"><td colspan="5" width="603">

11-06-14, 04:12 PM
Nah, it enhances the mood your already in.

11-06-14, 05:11 PM
I'm not on any stimulants and I really find coffee to be almost soothing. I must drink about 4 cups per day.

11-06-14, 05:39 PM
Aggravating anxiety yes, though I've only noticed positive effects on mood from caffeine.

11-06-14, 05:52 PM
I don't think there's any doubt that caffeine can exacerbate/aggravate anxiety you're already feeling. I don't know if it can cause or initiate anxiety or depression on its own whether or not you're already on a stimulant.

I do not consume a lot of strong caffeinated drinks (1 Coke a day is about it), but when I do I don't sense an increase in anxiety, but then again I'm on a couple non-benzo meds that specifically control anxiety -- in addition to ADHD I also have GAD.

I don't think your "low mood" (subtle depression, I'm assuming) is a form of anxiety but it could be caused by anxiety that's already going on. Maybe you "suffer" from perpetual low levels of depression and anxiety and you're not aware of it?

Little Missy
11-06-14, 06:10 PM
Positively affect my mood greatly. I love it.

11-07-14, 08:25 AM
NO coffee makes me very unhappy !
what I love most, is just starbucks pike place - it's energizing and cozy and soothing.

11-08-14, 02:05 AM
Positively affect my mood greatly. I love it.

This is how I feel.

However I like it too much, and have become addicted, and to some extent even dependent on it. It also does aggravate anxiety and can worsen a bad mood, but for me, the good effects outweigh the bad. I'm always looking forward to my next caffeine buzz!

But I know what you mean about peculiar and/or unpleasant effects on mood. This is because you're a sensitive type, like me. Tea for some reason can increase anxiety even more than coffee.. so I make it weak, and get more pleasant effects than I do with strong tea. The same generally applies to coffee. Anyway, that's how you avoid those strange anxiety/moody effects, and get to enjoy it.

Little Missy
11-08-14, 04:23 AM
Coffee either perks me up, or it puts me to sleep into the sweetest slumbers. Amazing stuff. I love it. I love the ritual of grinding the beans and pressing it. I love plugging in a Farberware Super Fast percolator. I love percolating it on the stove with an old Revereware percolator, I love making it through a pour through.

And there is a fantastic coffee roaster here at the foot of the Big Horns called Roast! and their beans are sooooo fresh.

11-09-14, 10:06 AM
I used to drink a lot of caffeinated coffee. Maybe 20-30+ cups a day. After I stopped drinking it I realized it was contributing to quite a few of the problems I had been through. It mostly didn't cause the problems but it influenced the way I reacted in response to the problems sometimes. Coffee makes me more awake and move more. It also makes it easier for me to get irritated/angry. When I don't drink caffeinated coffee getting irritated/angry is much harder to do, is much less frequent and way less intense in effect and duration. I consider not drinking caffeinated coffee a big step up.

11-09-14, 10:11 AM
I've switched to decaf tea and though I haven't had car tea often enough to establish a reliable link, with decaf tea I definitely don't get these negative effects.

It's just a pity that they don't offer decaf tea in my department. I know I can just make it myself but I've got this ritual of going to the staff room first thing in the morning for a cuppa of something and Im running out of stuff to have there because it's all disgusting.:rolleyes:

I know it's silly but these little things somehow have a very soothing effect on me.

11-09-14, 11:21 AM
could you buy a stash of tea and keep it in the staff room...? if they have a kettle or you can get just boiling water from the machine)
i know how you feel, i always have a coffee around 10:30 when i sort some mail. ( nice nespresso macines on every floor)

11-09-14, 11:24 AM
Fuzzy asda have a deal on their instant Nescafé lattes they are sooooo good they do a decaf variety too

Maybe stick to decaf

11-10-14, 06:33 AM
Just had another cup of tea and it definitely makes me feel unpleasant. Better stick to horrible decaf coffee or get my own decaf tea bags.