Coffee is the life elixir to countless people – it determines the pace of their day, their productivity, level of mental and physical activity, even their mood. The complex action of caffeine goes beyond the stimulating effect. While some are oversensitive to it, others complain they don’t get any effect from it. Why does that happen?
Fast caffeine metabolizers
Toxicologists have one way of explaining this level of tolerance to caffeine. If you don’t get any buzz, you’re probably metabolizing it faster than everyone else. The gene responsible for this is CYP1A2. There are two versions of it, 1A and 1F, the latter being more common and known as ‘slow’. This is why some people can drink coffee in the evening and still fall asleep shortly after, while others would stay awake for hours.
Can a fast metabolizer still enjoy caffeine?
In the event you find out you’re a fast metabolizer, you may still want to enjoy the buzz of coffee or energy drinks. Naturally, you will be tempted to increase the dose. However, that can lead to unwanted effects, such as dehydration. Besides, you cannot change your genes; you stay a fast metabolizer no matter how much of it you drink.
Building up tolerance
It could be that you were enjoying caffeine effects but gradually these subsided, with regular use. In that case, you became tolerant to it. See if you can be stimulated with a bigger dose. To return to decent doses, take a break that’s long enough to un-learn this tolerance.
Less good, more harm
To some people, caffeine fails to improve their mood and stimulate them mentally. Yet, they still experience physical effects, such as a higher heart rate and blood pressure, or anxiety, palpitations, rapid breathing, shortness of breath etc. It may increase the fatigue, too. This means caffeine does have an effect, but it’s not the desired one. This is about how the body metabolizes the substance.
What you feel after you drink a cup of coffee is mostly determined by your DNA. Thus, you should not apply other people’s method and try to overcome your chemistry. You can, however, experiment by yourself by ‘fasting’ from caffeine for a while, then reintroducing it, to see what happens. It is also smart to experiment with the dosage – to some, it’s better to have small doses instead of large ones.
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