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Caffeine is a natural stimulant and energy enhancer, commonly found in drinks such as coffee and tea. Caffeine pills offer a simple way to take this drug. When used correctly, people may enjoy several benefits, including increased alertness, energy, and mental performance.
However, there are some risks with taking too much caffeine, especially for people sensitive to this stimulant. In addition, alternatives also exist for those who do not tolerate caffeine.
In this article, we discuss caffeine in more detail and provide a list of caffeine pills people may consider trying.
Caffeine pills may be suitable for people looking for a natural stimulant and energizer in a simple product. Some may choose caffeine pills over other forms for several reasons.
Some people may also be looking for a higher relative dose of caffeine without drinking multiple cups of coffee for the same effect.
Others may be sensitive to acidic drinks, such as coffee, which may irritate the digestive tract.
Caffeine pills also often combine with other ingredients to help enhance its stimulant effects. This may make them a more well-rounded option for many people.
Caffeine is a highly popular stimulant. A 2014 study estimates that 85% of the United States population consume at least one caffeinated beverage daily. Popular forms include coffee, tea, cola, or other soft drinks.
Caffeine may be a useful substance as a fast-working natural stimulant. A 2019 study notes that this drug’s most well-known benefits include improved mood, physical performance, and brain function.
Additionally, caffeine may temporarily:
- increase energy
- increase alertness
- increase focus and attention
- reduce feelings of fatigue or sleepiness
- reduce headaches
- reduce perceptions of pain and fatigue
- boost metabolism
- improve memory
Importantly, these effects are temporary and only last as long as the caffeine remains in the body.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) note that caffeine consumption of up to 400 milligrams (mg) a day is generally not associated with negative effects in healthy adults.
However, some people are more sensitive to caffeine than others, and each individual will have a different tolerance level.
There are some risks associated with caffeine use, particularly in high use and in people sensitive to the compound. Additionally, too much caffeine can overstimulate the body, causing side effects.
Some adverse effects of caffeine use, especially in high doses, include:
- rapid heart rate
- muscle tremors called jitters
- anxiety or nervousness
- acid reflux
- high blood pressure
The National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health note that there is a link between excessive caffeine and issues such as:
- sleep issues
- digestive problems
Large amounts of caffeine may also cause serious issues in the heart and blood vessels, including:
- rapid heartbeat
- heart palpitations
- increases in blood pressure
Children, teenagers, and young adults should avoid taking caffeine pills. This drug may harm the developing nervous and cardiovascular system in young people.
Using caffeine regularly, then discontinuing use may lead to temporary withdrawal symptoms. These include:
- feeling anxious
- difficulty concentrating
A caffeine overdose is possible in people who take very high doses. Extremely high amounts of this drug are toxic and can even be fatal. Overdose symptoms include:
- erratic heartbeat
- extremely fast heart rate
- large muscle tremors or seizures
- feeling disoriented or being unable to focus
Anyone experiencing signs of an overdose should seek immediate medical attention.
Caffeine pills allow a person to take their preferred caffeine dose easily. People should follow the dosage instructions on each product and monitor any symptoms. Those sensitive to the effects of caffeine pills may need to lower their dosage or switch to a weaker product.
Do not take more than the recommended dose. Even in people with a high caffeine tolerance, other ingredients in the pills may cause adverse effects.
Caffeine pills could also cause dangerous drug interactions, particularly in people taking prescription medicines for:
- high blood pressure
- kidney disease
- heart disease
Even if product labels claim their pills derive from natural ingredients, they can still pose a risk when taken with other medicines. Before using any supplements, speak with a healthcare provider first.
Many caffeine pills are available to buy. Below, we list six products that people may wish to try.
Please note that the writer of this article has not tried these products. All product information is purely research-based.
Vali Caffeine & L-Theanine
These capsules each contain 50 mg of caffeine and 100 mg of the amino acid L-theanine. Research suggests that caffeine and L-theanine can improve cognitive performance, concentration, and alertness. The capsules are suitable for vegetarians and made in the U.S.
Performance Lab Stim
Performance Lab Stim provides a gentle boost of caffeine with other ingredients to help energize the body naturally. Each serving provides 50 mg of natural caffeine, along with B vitamins, L-theanine, and L-tyrosine.
ProLab Advanced Caffeine
ProLab Advanced Caffeine is a high-potency stimulant, delivering 255 mg of caffeine in each serving. The product derives from six natural sources, including coffee, tea, and cacao. The supplement also contains added calcium.
Nutricost Caffeine Capsules come in 100 mg or 200 mg servings. The supplement contains no other active ingredients and consists of only rice flour and a gelatin capsule. It is a simple and pure option but may not be suitable for vegetarians as the gelatin comes from animal sources.
Zhou Nutrition Energy + Focus
Zhou Nutrition Energy + Focus offers a blend of caffeine and L-theanine. Each serving delivers 100 mg of caffeine extracted from coffee, along with 200 mg of L-theanine. The capsules are also vegan friendly.
BulkSupplements offer a simple caffeine solution, with a capsule containing 200 mg of caffeine with no added ingredients. These may be a suitable option for people who prefer a pure product. They are also available in gelatin and vegetarian-friendly capsules.
Some people may not tolerate caffeine well, or they might prefer other options. Several natural caffeine products or alternatives include:
- herbal teas such as peppermint, ginger, or oregano
- B vitamins
- Ginkgo biloba
People should remember that natural or herbal caffeine alternatives are not risk-free. They could still trigger potentially harmful drug interactions in people with health conditions or those who take prescription medications. Discuss these with a doctor before taking any caffeine supplements or alternatives.
In addition, the FDA do not regulate these products. Therefore, it can be difficult to guarantee that their ingredient labels are 100% accurate and that they contain no other harmful or active ingredients. Ensure these products have gone through independent laboratory testing to verify their purity and safety.
As an alternative to drugs, people may benefit from the following to help them feel more awake and alert:
- drinking more water
- taking a cold shower
- taking a brisk walk
- working under brighter lights
Caffeine pills allow people to take measured doses of the stimulant in a simple form, which may provide energy and a boost in alertness and mental performance.
Other ingredients could help enhance the effects of caffeine or provide additional benefits to the body.
However, it is vital to use caffeine wisely and follow the instructions on the label. Consult a doctor before trying supplements first, particularly when taking other prescription medicines.
People sensitive to caffeine may want to avoid caffeine pills and try alternatives, such as drinking more water or going for a brisk walk.