Is This Popular Beverage An Effective Alternative To Ibuprofen? Here’s What We Know – Health Digest

Is This Popular Beverage An Effective Alternative To Ibuprofen? Here's What We Know - Health Digest

The psychoactive compound in coffee that gives us that desired burst of energy and focus is caffeine. Caffeine operates by blocking our adenosine receptors, which are instrumental in the neural communication of pain between the brain and our sensory neurons, according to a 2022 scientific review published in Cureus. By barricading these receptors, people who drink coffee may experience a reduction in pain.

In one 2017 animal study referenced in the review, researchers looked at whether the administration of caffeine influenced levels of postoperative pain in sleep-deprived rats. It was found that caffeine hindered postoperative pain sensitivity that would otherwise be heightened due to a lack of sleep. This sounds encouraging for those of us who enjoy a morning espresso, but some research suggests that a combination treatment of caffeine and ibuprofen might prove most effective compared to caffeine or ibuprofen alone. Such was the case in an alternate 2006 animal study published in the European Journal of Pharmacology in which combined doses of caffeine and ibuprofen yielded the greatest pain-blocking effects in mice with arthritis compared to the use of morphine, caffeine, or ibuprofen on their own.

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