What Causes Coffee Nausea?

Samanta Fryer
Samanta Fryer
Samanta Fryer is our senior editor and content writer, at CoffeeVibe. Apart from writing and reading, she’s fond of the coffee brewing process and enjoys tasting new coffe read more
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Ryan Hendricks
Ryan Hendricks
Ryan Hendricks is our tester, who puts products through their paces. He used to be a barista and is now a full-time coffee enthusiast. He’s always testing out new gadgets, read more
Last updated: August 22, 2023
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Nausea is a term used to describe the feeling of dizziness, discomfort, and sickness. It is a common symptom of many health conditions and can be caused by food poisoning, side effects of medications, drinking too much alcohol, and even pregnancy. But, do you know that drinking coffee is one of the culprits of this uncomfortable and sometimes painful condition? Read on to find out more.

Can coffee cause nausea?

What Causes Coffee Nausea?

Yes, it can, especially if you have a sensitive stomach. This, of course, doesn’t make coffee a bad drink, as it has a lot of health benefits. From waking you up to making you mentally alert, coffee is the ideal morning beverage. Nevertheless, the drink is not all perfect, as it has been scientifically linked to conditions like nausea.

Below are some reasons why coffee makes you feel sick.


As you likely know, there are various types of acids found in coffee. They contribute immensely to the overall taste of the brew. To sum it up, the acid in coffee is part of what makes it taste great. However, these acids can make you feel nauseous and uncomfortable, especially if you just woke up. These acids may hurt or irritate the lining of your stomach.

To forget about this feeling, opt for darker roasts, as the acidic level is significantly lower than regular roast.

Drinking coffee on an empty stomach

Drinking coffee on an empty stomach is a recipe for disaster, especially if your stomach is sensitive. Truth be told, coffee is a strong, bold, and rich drink with complex chemical makeup. So, drinking it without having something tangible for breakfast isn’t really a good idea. The best course of action for people with an unpredictable stomach reaction is to avoid caffeinated drinks in the morning.


What Causes Coffee Nausea?Caffeine, which is present in coffee, is a stimulant that can affect everything from your brain function and pulse rate to your blood pressure. It can also catalyze the production of stomach acid. The effect of caffeine can last for 6 to 12 hours.

The main problem with caffeine is that it promotes the production of stomach acid, which can lead to ulcer, nervousness, nausea, and dizziness. Studies have shown that drinking coffee on an empty stomach can cause the stomach to produce excess hydrochloric acid, which can lead to severe stomach pain.

Bear in mind that ingesting a small amount of coffee won’t necessarily lead to these reactions. Only people that consume large amounts of it may experience the unpleasant effects of caffeine. To be on the safe side, ensure that your coffee doesn’t contain more than 100 mg of caffeine.

If you don’t feel nauseous after drinking coffee or aren’t experiencing any of the unpleasant effects of caffeine, then you can decide to take multiple cups of coffee, but try not to take things too far.

How to get rid of coffee nausea

Let’s face it; nausea is one of the most uncomfortable feelings in the world. Since nobody prays to get sick after taking a delicious cup of coffee in the morning, it critical that every coffee drinker learns how to reduce the unpleasant effects of coffee nausea.

In this section, we are going to be looking at a handful of things you can do if you start feeling dizzy or nauseous after downing a few cups of coffee.


What Causes Coffee Nausea?Drinking coffee when you are not properly hydrated may make you feel drained out. Drinking a cup of coffee shouldn’t be the first thing you do when you wake up in the morning. Instead, drink one or two glasses of water to hydrate your cells and flush out dangerous toxins. Never should you use coffee as a substitute for water.

Bear in mind that water can also help decrease the effects of caffeine. And the good thing about it is that it works almost instantly. So, you may experience some level of relief or start feeling better shortly after drinking water.

Drink herbal tea

Herbal tea contains antioxidants and a few other components that can help you feel less nauseous after drinking coffee. Apart from neutralizing the effect of caffeine; herbal tea also has a lot of health benefits like protecting the cells and promoting digestion.

Take vitamin C

What Causes Coffee Nausea?

Eating fruits that are high in vitamin C can go a long way in helping you recover quicker. High level of caffeine can have a profound effect on your blood vitamin C concentration. At times, taking too much coffee may trick your brain into thinking that you don’t have enough Vitamin C in your system.

A great way to add some vitamin C back to your bloodstream is by chomping on grapefruits or oranges.


Another great way to get excess caffeine out of your system is by exercising. You see, when you exercise or engage in some sort of physical activity, you metabolize the excess caffeine bottled up in you.

You don’t have to lift heavy weights, or engage in an extreme workout just to get the caffeine out of your organism. Simple activities like jogging, brisk walking, and stretching can help you feel better. But that’s not all; these exercises will help you improve your body, mind, and soul.

Wait it out

Even if you aren’t able to do any of the above, the caffeine in your system will eventually go away. Depending on the severity of your nausea, you may not be able to move or drink anything. Well, if that is the case, then you should find a comfortable place to relax and wait it out.

Final note

Coffee is a great beverage with bunch of health benefits. However, when it is taken on an empty or weak stomach, it can do serious damage. So, whether you are new to coffee drinking or you have been drinking it for years, try to be moderate, as it may make you feel nauseous. And if for some reason you are not feeling well after sipping a cup of coffee, then you should apply any of the tips discussed in this article.

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