How to Enjoy Coffee Without Creating Hormone Imbalances

Millions of people all over the world can’t start their day without a cup of joe.  It’s what most people go-to for an afternoon pick-me-up.  If you’re like me and love coffee, please don’t feel like you have to stop drinking all coffee in order to support hormone health.  

Is it safe to drink coffee?

Caffeine has gotten a bad rep of being more of a drug than a food. It is said to be more harmful than nutritional. Contrary to this, studies have shown coffee drinkers to have better health outcomes than their non-drinker counterparts. The article Caffeine: A vitamin-like nutrient, or adaptogen, by Ray Peat, details some of the health benefits of caffeine. I have highlighted some of them below:

  • Lowers incidence of thyroid disease, including cancer
  • Protects the liver from toxins like alcohol and acetaminophen (Tylenol)
  • Protects against cancer caused by radiation, chemical carcinogens, viruses, and estrogens
  • Increases progesterone concentration in the blood and tissues
  • Lowers incidence of suicide
  • Supports movement of serotonin into nerves

And much more!

 The role of coffee and other forms of caffeine should be reconsidered as it relates to health. 

The consumption rate of coffee could be the most critical contributing factor to adverse health outcomes.  There’s a lot of information out there claiming that coffee isn’t good for hormone health.  Personally, I think it depends on the person, how much coffee they are drinking, and their health history.  It is also important to understand exactly HOW coffee impacts our hormones and then decide for yourself what is best.

How Does Coffee Potentially Impact Your Hormones?

  • Impacts Cortisol Levels.  Caffeinated coffee causes a release of the stress hormone, cortisol.  This leads to a stress response in the body.  When our bodies are stressed they are not prioritizing hormone production.
  • Impacts Blood Sugar.  The rise in cortisol leads to our livers breaking down sugar for energy in response to the stress.  This can lead to a rise in our blood sugar, which will then lead to a drop in blood sugar.
  • Impacts Liver Enzymes.  Caffeinated coffee has been shown to reduce liver cancer by up to 50% as well as help the body process alcohol and acetaminophen.  Optimal liver health is important for optimal hormone health.
  • Impacts Mineral Levels.  Caffeinated coffee depletes magnesium so make sure you eat magnesium-rich foods daily if you regularly drink coffee.  Magnesium is one of the building blocks of our sex hormones.  Magnesium-rich foods include leafy greens, avocado, dark chocolate, plantains, mackerel, banana, pumpkin seeds, hemp seeds, almonds, and cashews.

A study by Tsedeke Wolde, Effects of caffeine on health and nutrition: A Review, dives deeper into the effects caffeine has on nutrient depletion and mineral malabsorption.  

How to Create Hormone-Friendly Coffee?

  • Add a protein, fat, and carb.  My favorite way to do this is using Paleovalley bone broth protein, 1 Tbsp organic heavy cream, and 1 tsp coconut sugar.
  • Drink your coffee early.  Drinking your coffee with breakfast or soon after a meal will help reduce the blood sugar disturbance.
  • Opt for decaf or low-caf.  Drinking decaf or low-caf coffee helps reduce the stress response and blood sugar impact.  If you already have a lot of stress, I highly recommend starting with this step.
  • Drink responsibly.  Don’t overdo it.  Limiting yourself to 1-2 cups will also reduce the overall stress response and blood sugar disturbance.

How Much Coffee is Right for You?

Personally, I recommend taking a break from coffee or reducing the amount of caffeine you’re drinking for at least two weeks and see how you feel.  If you feel better with less, then drink less or opt for decaf or low-caffeine option.  Savorista Coffee makes a low-caf and decaf coffee that tastes AMAZING and has offered to give my community a discount.

You can use the code AMANDA to get 25% off your order or 30% off a subscription.  This is an affiliate code and supports all of the free content I share.  Plus, I LOVE their low-caf coffee!

Drinking coffee can have an impact on our hormones.  The release of cortisol; which causes an increase and then a drop in blood sugar, is most impactful.  So, keep your stresses low, increase magnesium intake, and switch to a lower caffeinated coffee.  Find your perfect balance of hormone-friendly coffee!

Photo by Gian Cescon on Unsplash

Amanda Montalvo

Amanda Montalvo is a women's health dietitian who helps women find the root cause of hormone imbalances and regain healthy menstrual cycles.

Master Your Minerals

Created by
Hormone Healing RD

what are you waiting for?

Your Health.