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How Does Coffee Prevent Depression?


The sudden wave of sadness that hinders mental, emotional, and physical health is something that we all encounter often. Feeling miserable and gloomy could be due to various reasons, such as relationship problems, going through a difficult phase, etc. However, as soon as the problem comes to an end, you start feeling happy and stable again.

On the other hand, when the feeling of sadness doesn’t end even after passing the difficult phase, that is something concerning. This feeling of sadness starts affecting your mental and physical ability to do things. If you are also facing something similar, it could be depression. This constant feeling of sadness and loss of interest in activities is medically known as depression. The long-term persistence of this mood disorder can lead to negative results on your health.

You are not alone who is fighting against the symptoms of depression. This mood disorder affects around 14.8 million Americans. However, the number of symptoms and their intensity may vary among patients. There are a multitude of treatments available to treat this condition. Which treatment aligns with your requirements will be determined by your doctor.


A girl having coffee to fight against depression.


Note: This medical condition is treated with a wide range of treatments. However, before you pick any treatment, you must consult your doctor. Taking any inappropriate treatment can worsen your symptoms. Therefore, be mindful while choosing the treatment for depression. It is usually addressed with a combination of therapies and medications.

Is it possible to treat depression with coffee? 

Coffee is one of the most popular drinks among all age groups, providing a rush of energy to get up from bed to accomplish your daily goals. This may be the reason why 600 million cups of coffee are consumed each day in the United States. You must be knowing the fact that coffee is a stimulant that works to increase productivity, alertness, and wakefulness. Do you think it helps in overcoming symptoms of depression?

There are studies that confirm drinking coffee improves the symptoms of depression in adults. When people drink coffee, they feel less severe symptoms. Also, people who drink coffee have a decreased chance of coming across a mood disorder, i.e., depression.

In addition to the above information, research also found that the effects of coffee also lead to other benefits, such as

  • Enhancing mental cognitive abilities

  • Decreasing the risk of developing cancer and stroke

  • Reducing the potential of encountering dementia, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s disease

There are multiple studies that disclosed the connection between decreased depression and coffee in adults. However, the results were different when other caffeinated beverages were consumed. It means it is something in coffee that minimizes the risk of depression, not caffeine.

On the other hand, when the effects of coffee were checked on children, it was found to increase the risk of depression. Coffee is a stimulant that affects your sleep, which can affect your mood. Therefore, children should not opt for coffee to address the depression’s symptoms. Please get in touch with your doctor to know about the other possible and effective treatments.

It is confirmed that coffee consumption can help adults going through depression. At the same, you should prevent yourself from the overconsumption of it. The overuse of coffee can result in several problems. Therefore, you shouldn’t make it a staple of your diet.

Is it safe to drink too much coffee? 

Excess of anything is not safe for your health. These days, coffee has become a staple among youngsters and working professionals. It is used as an escape to get through daily tasks and duties. However, the overconsumption of coffee is not safe for you. FDA guides people not to consume coffee more than four regular-sized cups. Consumption of coffee within the limit is safe and leads to fruitful outcomes. So, you should not take too much coffee as it can be problematic for your mental and physical health.

Drinking too much coffee can cause restlessness, insomnia, a rapid heartbeat, agitation, headache, anxiety, nausea, irritability, etc. All these symptoms affect the quality of your mood, which can worsen the symptoms. Hence, don’t exceed the recommended amount of coffee to keep yourself safe and healthy.

What foods should you avoid to counteract depression’s symptoms?

There are certain food items that must be avoided by people going through depression. The foods mentioned below can worsen your symptoms. So, if you have been taking these items, it is high time to quit their consumption to prevent symptoms from worsening.

Refined sugar:

Refined sugar is the first item you must avoid. Taking refined sugar through your daily coffee or cotton candy leads to an immediate rush in your body. As soon as the rush moves away, you may feel a lack of energy and a lower mood. Therefore, you should avoid the consumption of refined sugar.

Artificial sweetener:

The usage of artificial sweeteners is linked to an increased risk of depression. If you are already depressed, it may worsen your symptoms.

Hydrogenated oils:

Hydrogenated oils are present in a variety of food items such as deep-fried snacks, french fries, fast food, etc. Animals showed the symptoms of depression after exposure to a high-fat diet, according to a study conducted in 2019


As you know, alcohol is a central nervous system depressant. The excess usage of it can lead to dependency and hangovers that can affect one’s mood. If you have depression, you should cut off the consumption of alcohol.

The bottom line: 

Coffee and its effects on mental health, including depression, have been a topic of interest for researchers. While it is not a magical cure, coffee does have some potential benefits in preventing depression. Coffee possesses caffeine, which is a natural stimulant. It functions to increase the production of certain neurotransmitters, like dopamine and serotonin, associated with mood regulation. This can help improve mood and reduce the risk of developing depression. However, it is important to note that everyone’s body reacts differently to coffee, and excessive consumption can have negative effects. Therefore, it is always best to take it in moderation and listen to your body.


1. How does coffee affect mental health?

Mental health conditions, such as anxiety and depression, are growing faster than ever, affecting every age group across the world. Various possible reasons can lead to these conditions, such as traumatizing incidents, relationship troubles, the death of a loved one, etc. 

Above all, this medical condition is treatable with a wide range of treatments. Even though coffee also reduces the risk of developing depression in adults. Taking 1 or 2 cups of coffee daily minimizes your risk of developing such conditions. On the other hand, overconsumption can increase the risk of these conditions. 

2. Can coffee make you happier?

It is believed that coffee increases certain hormones in your body, such as dopamine and norepinephrine, that contribute to the feeling of euphoria and happiness. Coffee is a stimulant that works to take up your mood and energy levels by releasing the above-mentioned happy hormones. 

3. Does coffee raise dopamine levels?

Coffee activates the brain's nerve cells, which the pituitary gland sees as an emergency and triggers the production of adrenaline. The neurotransmitter dopamine, which is impacted by substances like heroin and amphetamines, is also elevated by caffeine.

4. Can coffee actually help anxiety?

Caffeine and coffee have other health benefits, like increasing energy and focus. However, a lot of people may also experience anxiety symptoms, which coffee can worsen. It might be wise for some people to look for alternatives to coffee and stay away from caffeine.

It is probably not a good idea to have a cup of coffee anytime you're feeling anxious, even though the current research indicates that caffeine has an anti-anxiety impact. There are some situations, like right before bed, where consuming coffee will make you feel more anxious. Therefore, it is better to dodge its consumption.       

Medically Reviewed By:

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B. Pharma

(Dr. A. Sharma, PharmD, is a licensed pharmacist and a medical writer with 10 years of clinical experience. He strives to empower patients to understand their medications so that they become better healthcare advocates.)


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