Yesterday I had a way too big, way too strong cup of 100% Robusta. I had never tried pure Robusta before, so I had no idea what I was getting into. I experienced strong caffeine effects 6+ hours after consumption, and had mildly shaking hands + felt a little ill for six more hours (and then I went to bed).

I'm fine now, but what could I have done (or eaten, drunk) to weaken the effects of said cup? There are "home remedies" for hangovers, and if one has eaten too spicy food, bread is usually good. What works on caffeine?

  • 2
    Just curious, was it an actual cup, or more like a mug? That's .. a lot of rocket fuel we're talking there. Ouch.
    – user101
    Commented Jan 29, 2015 at 16:30
  • 2
    It was about 0.6 litres, so you're right, a cup isn't the correct word. Yeah, wasn't fun... I knew I'd had too much from the first 15 minutes. On the plus side, now I know my boundaries better, and I got a lot of programming done...
    – Ludwik
    Commented Jan 29, 2015 at 16:37

2 Answers 2


What you experienced was a caffeine overdose, however mild, and that's something that you shouldn't really try home remedies to correct. Had you gone to the emergency room, you probably could have expected to been given a laxative, activated charcoal, and possibly I.V. fluids. I doubt that they would have pumped your stomach over a single cup, but they might have if your heart was beating irregularly.

Absorption of most things you swallow generally depends on how much you've had to eat - so yes, eating something filling (e.g. bread soaked in water) would probably have alleviated some of the discomfort, especially if you had the coffee on an empty stomach. Staying hydrated (but not over-hydrated) would also have been important.

I wouldn't advise self-medicating in circumstances like this, all you can do is be very mindful of symptoms getting worse (particularly any sign of irregular heart activity) while you wait it out and (eventually) crash into bed.

But, bread / crackers / water - not going to hurt, and might make you feel a little better, or better sooner. While symptomatic, I wouldn't take anything over the counter or prescription unless you checked with a doctor (because of possible heart implications)

And really, if you feel at all beyond 'blaugh' - you should see a doctor quickly. People die from too much caffeine, and it's not pretty, so be careful.


Yup, you had a caffeine overdose and some symptoms of acute caffeine toxicity.

Caffeine is metabolized by your liver, specifically by the CYP1A2 pathway of the cytochrome P450 enzyme complex and there are a lot of prescription drugs, foods and herbal remedies that will slow or speed up caffeine clearance (elimination).

What you could have done to speed up your recovery was to stay well hydrated, consider moderate aerobic exercise and if possible sleep through the worst of it. But to answer your question directly, a meal of charbroiled beef with cabbage, cauliflower or broccoli, all foods known to induce CYP1A2 activity would hasten caffeine elimination.

As would, in theory, the prescription drug regadenoson (adenosine agonist) or varied mild anti-anxiety or tranquilizers for symptomatic relief.

You'd especially want to avoid, if possible foods the following that would prolong the half life of caffeine: grapefruit juice, cumin, tumeric, St. John's wort, peppermint tea. And if practical avoid prescription drugs that would strongly inhibit CYP1A2 e.g. ciprofloxacin, fluoroquinolones, fluvoxamine, verapamil and oral contraceptives.

  • Those are some very specific health advice. While interesting and valuable, do you have some sources to back them up?
    – Ludwik
    Commented Jun 6, 2020 at 11:28

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.