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Study: Too much coffee linked to blindness

What's a coffee lover to do?

By Christine L. Chen Oct 5, 2012 1:29PM

If you’re like me, you just can’t see straight when you first wake up. You need coffee, and you might need it all day long. But a first-of-its kind study is now saying you should really dial it down, or you might go blind.  

Really? Okay, maybe the outlook is not that stark. New research shows “vision loss” or “blindness” is possible with heavy drinking of caffeinated coffee. It’s linked to an increased risk of “exfoliation glaucoma,” the top reason people get secondary glaucoma. 

Eh, for us coffee drinkers, the fear of glaucoma doesn’t really send us into a blind panic. Before our first cup, though, we can get that desperate feeling, right? Also, it’s just one study so far, and more research is needed. 

Still, there are many studies to make you to reconsider how much coffee you drink. A lot of coffee per day is linked to depression, fast food cravings, miscarriage and more. (In bizarre news, spilled coffee is linked to loosening the seats on American Airlines  and causing delays.)

Other studies say good things about coffee: It leads to a lower risk of death and a lower risk of skin and other kinds of cancer.

What’s a coffee lover to do?

Whatever the studies say, we know that coffee is a stimulant. Some experts even call it a drug. It perks us up – but only temporarily. When your body relies on that pick-me-up straight out of a cup on a daily basis, and you can’t see straight or do your work without five or more cups a day, I say it’s time to quit. Maybe not entirely, but it’s time to at least scale back.

I used to drink multiple double-shot lattes per day and buzz my way through life. When my job changed to a swing shift, I decided to kick my coffee habit. Most cafes didn’t open that early, and I knew when I didn’t have coffee, I was totally out of it.

I started weaning myself. First, I reduced my number of coffee drinks. Then, I went from double caffeinated to half-decaf to total decaf. I discovered the meaning of “detox,” experiencing blinding headaches and a bunch of other unattractive stuff. Caffeine withdrawal is not cute.

I never wanted to go through that again, and I didn’t regret doing it. Oh, I did miss that smell and bittersweet taste, though. When my shift changed to normal hours, I decided I could handle myself around coffee again without falling down the rabbit hole. I started having one cup, only in the morning, and it has stayed that way for eight years. I make my morning coffee a yummy ritual. Each day, I grind whole beans, use a nice French press and add a dash of special vanilla soy creamer, which is my new addiction, by the way.



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