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Myth Busters: Will Caffeine Help You Lose Weight?

Posted on: by Women's Health
A cup of coffee with a major dose of caffeine

Photography by Unsplash

Can you slash kilojoules while you caffeinate?

The argument for glugging down espressos to lose weight is tempting. After all, the dark brew’s associated with a healthy heart and longer life – why not a slimmer waist, too? But will caffeine help you lose weight?

The Argument For Caffeine 

The theory behind caffeine and weight loss is twofold. First, it’s thought to help with appetite suppression, but only for a short period of time. Second, caffeine may stimulate thermogenesis, or your body’s ability to produce heat, which in turn torches fat. But research has shown that you’d have to drink up tons of caffeine in order for thermogenesis to have an effect.

The Caveat 

The most obvious argument against drinking caffeine for weight loss is the form in which you drink it. Energy drinks are spiked with sugar and sometimes, other dangerous chemicals, while your fave coffee order is part espresso, but mostly kilojoule-dense milk and sugar. Your move? Keep your coffee order to one creamy one a day, and make the rest as milk-and-sugar-free as possible. And, watch your intake: drinking too much coffee could make you agitated, nervous and unable to sleep. But, if you’re still keen on caffeine and weight loss, try the chemical in your lotion: one study found a cream enriched with 7% caffeine, applied twice daily, showed significant reduction in the circumference of the participants’ thighs.

Looking for more on coffee? Here’s the lowdown on the link between caffeine and cellulite, the pros and cons of caffeine plus what it’s like to actually ditch the drink all together. 

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