Millions of people depend on that first cup of coffee to get started each morning. You may be among that number, but also concerned that caffeine will age you, or rather, make your skin look older. In fact, caffeine not only will not age you, it might improve the appearance of your skin and help you look younger.
Caffeine is a stimulant. According to MayoClinic.com, caffeine's effect on the central nervous system is responsible for its ability to wake you up, make you feel less fatigued and focus on a task at hand. In the past, caffeine was thought to be a health risk. However, current research findings have identified health benefits associated with caffeine and coffee.
Caffeine and Your Skin
Caffeine and coffee are used as active ingredients in many skin creams because of their diuretic, antioxidant and vaso-constrictive properties. Cellulite creams containing caffeine help to smooth the skin. Research using mice exposed to ultraviolet radiation provides some evidence that caffeine-enhanced skin creams may help protect your skin from skin cancer. Caffeine is also used in some eye preparations. Vasoconstriction, or constriction of blood vessels, and caffeine's diuretic effect help to reduce puffiness and dark circles around the eyes. The end result is that these medications help make skin appear healthy and younger.
Most of the caffeine in coffee, tea and some other beverages is absorbed by other body tissues, so your skin gets a relatively small amount. Therefore, it's not likely coffee will have much effect on the appearance of your skin. However, MayoClinic.com says that research shows coffee has other health benefits. In addition to its value as a stimulant, caffeine and coffee are linked to reducing risk of liver cancer, Type 2 diabetes and Parkinson's disease.
Caffeine and coffee should be consumed in moderation. MayoCliic.com suggests you limit your intake to four cups a day. More than four cups can cause a diuretic effect leading to frequent urination. Drinking excessive amounts of caffeine may lead to insomnia, irritability, nervousness and restlessness.
- CBS News: Perk Up Your Skin – With Caffeine!
- MayoClinic.com: Caffeine: How Much Is too Much?
- MayoClinic.com: Coffee and Health: What Does the Research Say?
- MayoClinic.com: Caffeine: Is It Dehydrating or Not?
- Journal of the American Medical Association: Association o f Coffee and Caffeine Intake with Risk of Parkinson Disease
- Diabetes Care: Coffee, Caffeine and Risk of Type 2 Diabetes
- Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences: Topical Application of Caffeine or (-) Epigallocatechin Gallate (EGCG) Inhibit Carcinogenesis and Selectively Increase Apoptosis in UVB-Induced Skin Tumors in Mice