Okay, this is another odd-ball article topic here, but please bear with me. Have you ever wondered if the coffee you grab in the morning on the way to work might be causing your back pain and sciatica?
Well, of course there are foods that you can eat that either hurt or help inflammation in your body, which may contribute to back pain. Foods like junk food, fast food, red meats, fried foods, pastries, and cakes are of course not good for you. These foods are loaded with trans fat, saturated fats, and have a high glycemic index. All of which will only exacerbate inflammation and make your back pain worse.
On the other end of the spectrum there are foods like walnuts, blueberries, salmon, cod, and other fruits which are extremely good for your health. These foods are filled with Omega 3 fatty acids, antioxidants, and vitamin D. All of these foods are great for you for a lot of different reasons, but when it comes to your back, these all help to reduce inflammation which takes pressure off of your spinal nerves and relieves back pain.
But where does coffee fit into this spectrum? Now, of course there are extremely sugary, high-calorie coffees that you can get at coffee shop chains. These types of coffees have high glycemic indices and many of them contain a high amount of saturated fats in them. These coffees are definitely not good for your inflammation and your back pain.
But what about straight black coffee without all the sugar and other goodies that turn a breakfast drink into more of a dessert?
Well, black coffee is a lot better for you and it doesn’t really have the “not good for you” ingredients. But it also doesn’t have any of the good ingredients either.
However, I’m sure you’re aware that coffee has caffeine in it. If you’ve ever had to write a college term paper the night before it was due, you’ve probably used this to your advantage.
But did you know that caffeine can actually elevate levels of anxiety that you experience? This is why people that get the jitters from too much coffee seem a little jumpier than normal. Essentially the coffee is putting them on edge and sending their bodies into the fight or flight condition.
When you are in fight or flight, your muscles are a bit more tense than normal, mostly to prepare you for a quick escape or confrontation with any perceived threat.
Now, if you have back pain, this isn’t good news. Even a little bit of muscle tension can cause your piriformis or psoas muscle to irritate your sciatic nerve and cause back pain. Definitely not good.
So, you see, although there probably isn’t much real danger in drinking a cup of coffee in the morning, it can contribute to back pain issues. If your back pain is something you’ve been struggling with for awhile, it might be worth the effort to cut back on the coffee.