Caffeine is a natural ingredient of various plant parts. This chemical compound is found, for example, in coffee and cocoa beans, tea leaves, kola nuts, and guarana berries. In processed form, caffeine is often found in products such as coffee, cola drinks, energy drinks, or even in workout boosters.
The active ingredient stimulates your nervous system and is known for its wake-up, performance-enhancing effect. The reason for this is the similarity of caffeine with the messenger substance adenosine, which is responsible for your tiredness.
Caffeine blocks your adenosine receptors shortly after consumption. This way, the receptors that signal fatigue to you are weakened or no longer function properly.
Blocking the adenosine receptors also increases the release of dopamine, adrenaline, and noradrenaline hormones. Your blood vessels constrict, your blood pressure rises, and your heart pumps faster, causing increased blood flow. This has an attention- and concentration-increasing effect. The effect of caffeine starts shortly after ingestion (about 15-30 min) because it spreads quickly in the bloodstream. The effect can last for several hours.
Even if the effects of caffeine seem positive at first glance, you should not overdo it with the consumption. Due to increased blood pressure, an overdose can lead to cardiovascular problems.
Headaches, sweating, nervousness, and sleep problems are possible side effects. In the worst case, it can even lead to cardiac arrhythmias. For this reason, you should use training boosters that contain caffeine with caution and be aware of possible side effects. A caffeine intake of up to 200 mg daily seems harmless for adults.
Also, your body gets used to the effects of caffeine over time. To feel consistent effects, you would have to increase the dose again and again with regular consumption.
However, this is harmful to your health in the long run. Therefore, an often-used strategy is caffeine cycling, where caffeine is consumed over several weeks, and then no caffeine is taken for 1-2 weeks for resensitization. In the resensitization phase, however, you will feel flabby and may experience headaches and similar symptoms.