How Caffeine is Robbing Your Adrenals

CSNN National Page > Vancouver > Blog > How Caffeine is Robbing Your Adrenals

(Written by Madison Arrotta of Pranin Organic for CSNN Vancouver)

This probably isn’t the first time you’ve heard that caffeine is bad for your adrenal health.

Ever wondered why?

Coffee triggers your adrenal glands, which are responsible for releasing hormones that signal your body to go into fight or flight mode.1 This is our age old response system that tells our brain, ‘Yes, fight and challenge that predator!’ or, ‘No, run away as fast as you can!’ As you can imagine, this is a stressful situation for you to be in, and every time you drink coffee, you’re putting your adrenals (and the rest of your body) through this plight.2 This is why many people feel a crash after drinking coffee, or even experience anxieties while drinking it.3

In addition to hurdling your adrenals through this fight or flight, high alert battle, you can actually end up with adrenal fatigue if your coffee habit persists.2

If you’re overworking your adrenals everyday by being under stress at work, sitting in traffic or arguing with your partner, plus you add on drinking coffee regularly, it can be very taxing. Your adrenals simply can’t handle that much stress, even if you’re the healthiest eater out there!


Caffeine acts as a diuretic in your body and actually dehydrates you,4 which is why you might feel the need to go to the washroom after drinking a cup of coffee. This isn’t good for your skin, as it needs hydration to stay strong and healthy. Coffee can also have a toxic effect on your liver. The liver acts as a purifier, separating all of the toxins that come in the body from the good stuff your body needs and uses. Naturally, prolonged exposure to the toxins in coffee can cause your liver to be built up with toxins to the point where it can’t purify your blood anymore.4

Now, of course, you can stop all of this from happening by limiting your caffeine intake as much as possible!


Quitting coffee when you’ve relied on it for so long can be extremely difficult. Follow these 3 steps to freeing yourself from your coffee addiction!

1. Establish why you’re drinking coffee. Is it because you’re tired, constipated, or is it simply a social luxury you feel pressured to partake in? Regardless of the answer, this will give you a reason which you can then use to find a more sustainable answer to. (ie. If you’re using coffee for energy, perhaps try to cut your consumption in half, and replace the caffeine you cut out with natural sources)

2. Get down to one cup of organic, fair trade coffee a day. From there, you can choose to pursue cutting it out altogether. Many people drink coffee because they need more energy. A good quality whole food, organic B vitamin supplement will provide your body with the sustainable energy it needs. This is because your body uses dietary B vitamins to make energy.

3. When you are ready, swap coffee out for a natural source of caffeine. Try using organic matcha powder (make sure it’s not sourced from China), organic green tea, our PureFood B or Harmonic Arts’ Kick Start! Superfood Upgrade.

Whether you choose to cut coffee out for good is up to you, but relying on it to get through the day is not sustainable and it’s probably covering up a more serious health issue. Not only that, but it’s proven to run down your adrenal glands. Your adrenals are linked to your thyroid, metabolism and other significantly important functions of your body. We strongly recommend cutting out coffee if you are dealing with adrenal fatigue, chronic fatigue or notice you experience negative symptoms after drinking it.

To learn more about how you can beat adrenal fatigue, read our blog post Adrenal Fatigue – A Nursing Student’s Story and check out How to Stay Energized at Work for more holistic energy tips.

Written by Madison Arrotta, Pranin Organic