I've been working out 5 days a week. Lifting followed by a 20-30 min cardio session. I've been sticking to my diet as well. "Good" carbs, good amount of proteins, veggies, no soda, only water and green tea (sometimes, mostly only at lunch). However, I haven't been able to reduce my coffee intake, and, I wanted to know if it would affect my weight loss, or, my muscle building progress.

I currently drink from 3 to 4 cups of coffee (one 0 calorie sugar packet per cup) and one tea spoon of creamer per cup.

  • 1
    Just keep in mind some artificial sweeteners can make you hungrier. Also coffee is quite good for you, especially when you're trying to lose weight. I've read that it helps you burn a greater percentage of fat after exercise. Also make sure you are still getting enough sleep.
    – Aequitas
    Oct 26, 2015 at 1:43
  • I didn't know the sweeteners issue, thanks for pointing it out @Aequitas
    – Just Do It
    Oct 26, 2015 at 17:13

1 Answer 1


Research is pretty divided. On one end, there are claims that it reduces performance and muscle growth by slowing muscle reaction and displacing calcium:

Regular intake of caffeine reduces your muscles strength and resistance training performance by slowing down the muscle contraction and relaxation cycle.

High intake of caffeine also displaces calcium absorption, which may partially explain the adverse effect to muscle contractions, as calcium plays an important role in nervous system function, as well as bone growth and structure.

Others claim that it improves performance:

The primary effect that caffeine has is on your central nervous system. The drug increases the firing of your neurons and triggers your pituitary gland to release adrenaline. American Council on Exercise sports nutritionist Fabio Comana states that reputable studies have shown this stimulating effect to improve endurance exercise performance. By allowing you to perform exercise for longer periods of time and a sustained intensity level, caffeine may aid in muscle growth.

A second mechanism through which caffeine may enhance your muscle growth is through the release of fatty acids into your bloodstream. In a review of energy beverages presented in 2010 in the "Mayo Clinic Proceedings," Dr. John Higgins and colleagues noted that your muscles will use fatty acids as an energy source before the stored glycogen in your muscles. Preserving your muscle glycogen may help you exercise for longer periods of time without reaching muscle exhaustion.

Overall, I'd say that 3-4 cups of coffee isn't really going to break the bank either way. If it keeps you moving to perform more exercise, that's good. If the caffeine is disrupting your sleep habits, that's bad. The creamer is less than 10 calories per teaspoon, so 3-4 cups will neither result in massive weight gain or much extra fuel for muscle-building. It's pretty much a wash.

  • Caffeine has been proven to be a performance enhancer, so much so that WADA has set upper limits (Which are really high) on caffeine levels during competition. That effect is blunted, however, with daily caffeine intake. For the most part, you are correct, it's pretty much a wash. +1.
    – JohnP
    Oct 26, 2015 at 20:07

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