Stress and a bad mood are some things we all suffer from every now and then. But we don’t have to, because researchers have found that there’s one thing we can do to stabilise them every single day.
What is it? Have a cup of coffee!
Researchers from the University of Columbia have reported that caffeine can stabilise stress and emotional balance – and have discovered the reason why.
The incidence of depression and risk of suicide have been inversely correlated with caffeine consumption. However, this is the first time the reason for this relationship has been known.
Rodrigo Cunha and colleagues tested whether adenosine A2A receptors (A2AR) in the brain, which are known targets of caffeine, control the negative effects of chronic unpredictable stress. Mice subjected to stress showed significant behavioral changes consistent with increased anxiety and reduced memory, compared with unstressed mice. The behavioural changes were accompanied by reduced synaptic plasticity and synaptic protein density, compared with unstressed mice, but caffeine consumption prevented several of these changes.
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Stress also enhanced A2AR levels in synapses, and blocking A2AR using drugs or deleting the gene for A2AR had the same effect as caffeine consumption. Notably, drugs that blocked A2AR could not only prevent but also reverse the stress-induced behavioral and synaptic changes. The results implicate A2AR as a potential link between chronic stress and mental health deterioration, and suggest that A2AR blockers might help treat stress-induced declines in mood and memory.
So to keep prevent stress and keep your bad mood at bay, just have a dose of caffeine each day!
Tell us, how often do you drink coffee? Do you prefer coffee or tea? Share your thoughts in the comments below…