Does Coffee Cause Acid Stomach? Exploring the Effects of Coffee on Digestion


Ever since I can remember, I have been a coffee lover. The rich aroma and bold taste of my morning cup of joe always bring a smile to my face. However, recently I have been hearing a lot of chatter about coffee causing acid stomach and its negative effects on digestion. Naturally, this piqued my curiosity and led me down a rabbit hole of research. In this article, I will explore the effects of coffee on digestion and answer the burning question – does coffee really cause acid stomach?

Coffee and Its Acidity

Let’s start by diving into the nature of coffee itself. I discovered that coffee is naturally acidic in nature. This acidity is due to the presence of certain compounds, such as chlorogenic acid and quinic acid. These compounds can stimulate the production of stomach acid, which can lead to the feeling of acidity or heartburn. However, it’s important to note that the acidity of coffee does not necessarily equate to its effect on stomach acid levels.

The Role of Stomach Acid

To understand the relationship between coffee and acid stomach, we must understand the role of stomach acid in digestion. Stomach acid, or hydrochloric acid, is essential for the breakdown of food and the absorption of nutrients. It helps kill harmful bacteria and aids in the digestion of proteins. Adequate levels of stomach acid are crucial for a healthy digestive system.

Coffee and Gastrointestinal Motility

One interesting aspect to consider is the effect of coffee on gastrointestinal motility, or the movement of food through the digestive tract. Coffee has been found to stimulate the contractions of the muscles in the colon, which can promote bowel movements. This is why some people find that a cup of coffee can help kickstart their morning routine. However, excessive consumption of coffee may lead to increased bowel movements or even diarrhea, which can be attributed to its laxative effect.

The Myth of Coffee’s Dehydrating Effect

Another common misconception about coffee is its supposed dehydrating effect. While coffee does have a mild diuretic effect, meaning it can increase urine production, it doesn’t significantly dehydrate the body. In fact, the water content in coffee can contribute to your daily fluid intake. However, excessive consumption of coffee without drinking enough water may lead to mild dehydration. It’s always important to stay hydrated by drinking enough water throughout the day.

The Impact of Individual Sensitivity

It’s essential to note that each person’s body reacts differently to coffee. Some individuals may be more sensitive to the effects of coffee on their digestion, while others may not experience any issues at all. Factors such as age, overall health, and even the type of coffee consumed can play a role in how it affects your stomach.

Reducing the Potential Effects

If you find that coffee tends to give you an acid stomach or indigestion, there are steps you can take to reduce these potential issues. Here are a few tips to consider:

1. Opt for low-acid coffee

Certain coffee beans and brewing methods produce coffee with lower acidity. Look for beans labeled as low-acid or go for coffee that has been subjected to a cold brewing process, as it tends to be less acidic.

2. Use coffee additives

Adding milk or cream to your coffee can help neutralize its acidity, as dairy products are alkaline. You can also experiment with adding a pinch of baking soda to your coffee, as it can help reduce its acidity.

3. Limit your consumption

If you find that coffee consistently causes discomfort, it may be beneficial to limit your consumption or switch to decaffeinated options. Decaffeinated coffee has lower levels of some irritants, such as chlorogenic acid.

4. Drink plenty of water

To ensure optimal hydration and minimize any potential dehydrating effects of coffee, make sure to drink plenty of water alongside your coffee consumption.


After delving into the effects of coffee on digestion, I can confidently say that coffee does not directly cause acid stomach in all individuals. While it is naturally acidic, the impact on stomach acid levels and digestion can vary from person to person. Sensitivity to coffee, overall health, and other factors play a crucial role in determining how it affects the digestive system. By understanding your body’s response and making small adjustments in your coffee consumption, you can still enjoy your cup of joe without experiencing discomfort.

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