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French Press coffee - good and very bad

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  • French Press coffee - good and very bad

    Recently I have been enjoying a mug of French press coffee, black, in the morning. It sure makes good coffee. But the coffee is very strong. I have been getting sicker and sicker every day that I've been having a cup of this coffee. The last two days I've suffered terrible gas and an inability to sleep. Today I just felt horrible. I have had to pee a million times. I feel anxious and unwell. I'm bloated and my stomach is huge. How can you be peeing so much AND be bloated??? Anyway, caffeine intoxication. No more French press coffee! It's very good but it's also very very bad.
    Female, 5'3", 50, Max squat: 202.5lbs. Max deadlift: 225 x 3.

  • #2
    Interesting, I've heard of some people having this kind of reaction to coffee. Does it happen with other coffee, or only your french press stuff? Is it possible you got a bad batch of something, maybe it came with some kind of mold, and that's what you're reacting to?

    I remember you mentioned that you didn't do well with the potato thing, but you were suspicious that it could be due to your coffee. Maybe it wasn't the potatoes, after all? (Or maybe it was both and it gave you a real double-whammy!)

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    • #3
      Wow, I just about can't live without my french press coffee. Midnight black and strong as an ox.
      "Go For Broke"
      Fat Kine-230/24% @ 6'2"
      Small Kine-168/9%
      Now- 200/8%
      Goal- 210/6%

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      • #4
        if french press is what i call plunger coffee it is weaker than expresso? i love my coffee but too much spins me out too. not in the same way as what you are describing as i get no bloating or gas. i do get early morning insomnia and i have even had heart palpitations on those mean ass fat burners when i have been training hard. what i think it is ( i studiously try not to delve too deep ) is caffeine ups the cortisol production by stressing the adrenals. so if you are marginal in the stress dept too much will push you over the edge. i would guess the symptoms would then vary from person to person as it depends on your initial state. i limit myself now to 3 cups a day and i am fine. i also get decaf beans which are passable as it is the flavour not the caffeine i crave.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by sbhikes View Post
          No more French press coffee! It's very good but it's also very very bad.
          They do make strong coffee.

          It's interesting that the original maker of these does them in 3, 6, etc. cup sizes and if you check the capacity of the container their understanding of "a coffee cup" is around 3 or 4 ounces.

          Maybe the problem comes from combining Continental European strength coffee with Anglo-American serving sizes -- "a mug" (which I guess is usually at least double that).

          You could try an aeropress. Quick to make in those, and they're easier to clean. It is wasteful inasmuch as it uses more coffee, but the result is quite mild, since the grounds get filtered out.

          Otherwise, maybe dilute the coffee from the cafetiere/press half-and-half with boiling water? "Americano" style as they'd say in the coffee shops, long but not so strong.

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          • #6
            I think there's also a difference between the strength of boiled coffee (espresso, press, cowboy) and drip. In the drip, the water cools a little as it drips down onto the coffee; this would make a slightly weaker coffee.

            Also, beans make so much difference. Counterintuitively, darker roast beans are easier on the stomach and the nerves.

            I use a stove top espresso maker. It takes 3.5 "scoops" to fill the basket, which means the same amount I would have used to make 3.5 cups in my drip coffee maker. It makes one large mug. That sucker wakes me up in the morning.

            I would try different beans if you miss coffee. The Americano is a good idea also.
            "Right is right, even if no one is doing it; wrong is wrong, even if everyone is doing it." - St. Augustine

            B*tch-lite

            Who says back fat is a bad thing? Maybe on a hairy guy at the beach, but not on a crab.

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            • #7
              As ever, use a good quality coffee and the right roast for you. DH went from a darker roast (his preference) to a milder roast, and got rid of the stomach aches from the coffee. He then decreased the amount of coffee and increased the water, and only steeped it for the exact amount of time recommended by the roaster (we have an artisanal roaster here. . .in fact, several).

              This made a huge difference for him, and he could have a regular mug of coffee.

              In the alternative, he adds hot water to his darker roasts.

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              • #8
                You're sensitive to high amounts of caffeine, then? I'm the opposite, I add 5 80mg shots of espresso to my daily coffee and it doesn't even get my heart rate up...
                F 28/5'4/100 lbs

                "I'm not a psychopath, I'm a high-functioning sociopath; do your research."

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                • #9
                  I can drink more espresso than french press or even brewed coffee, although I typically don't consume a whole mug of espresso. I'll usually add brewed coffee to my espresso if I want a mug's worth.

                  I've been using the same old coffee as I always do, just using my french press. I have the 3-cup size, which fills a regular coffee mug. Then I'd have another cup of brewed coffee once I got to work. A year of just making espresso (with a cheapass machine) at home in a big mug and then having a 2nd cup at work didn't do this to me. And even making coffee in my french press but adding butter and cocoa powder or heavy cream didn't do this. It's a combo of the french press and drinking it straight up.

                  I've never taken one of those fat burners, nor have I ever drunk an energy drink. So if they do to you what too much caffeine does to you, I highly doubt you can lose any weight from them. I'm a believer in how messing up your adrenals/cortisol can mess up any weight issues. Not only did I feel fatter but I felt awful and was in search of something to make me feel better. I considered sugary stuff but went for salty nuts instead.
                  Female, 5'3", 50, Max squat: 202.5lbs. Max deadlift: 225 x 3.

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                  • #10
                    It's counterintuitive, but a shot of espresso has less caffeine than even drip coffee, so an Americano is actually easier on the system than a cup of the "regular" stuff. The speed at which the water goes through the grounds in the espresso process allows for a very strong tasting coffee, but to extract more caffeine, the brewing has to be longer.

                    I love my french press but it does tend to result in stronger coffee, although you can reduce the quantity of coffee and/or the time you allow it to sit before plunging, which will reduce the strength of your brew. I don't drink huge mugs of it, though. And yes, the cream or butter will cushion it. My grandmother used to insist that drinking black coffee (without any dairy) was very hard on your body and especially your stomach.
                    “If I didn't define myself for myself, I would be crunched into other people's fantasies for me and eaten alive.” --Audre Lorde

                    Owly's Journal

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                    • #11
                      I've noticed that my caffeine effect (mild shakiness) are nil when I moderate the coffee with cocoanut milk (lots of it). I used to love lattes in my dairy days. But even with the milk I'd have nasty effects with the second cup. Now I can drink two full mugs without feeling anything like jitters. But only when I really bump it up with that delicious, fatty cocoanut milk.

                      Good to know that coffee can be so powerful.

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                      • #12
                        Whether I use my french press, or my classic corning ware stovetop percolator, or my good old sunbeam drip coffee maker, I use the same amount of the same ground coffee, and about the same amount of water. They all taste different, probably because of the different water temp and amount of steeping time. I don't notice one being more 'caffeinated' than another.

                        The biggest difference between the french press and the filtered drip (with paper filter) is that I get more of the natural oils from the beans with the press. The paper filter seems to catch the oils.
                        Sandra
                        *My obligatory intro

                        There are no cheat days. There are days when you eat primal and days you don't. As soon as you label a day a cheat day, you're on a diet. Don't be on a diet. ~~ Fernaldo

                        DAINTY CAN KISS MY PRIMAL BACKSIDE. ~~ Crabcakes

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                        • #13
                          French Press rebuttal

                          Originally posted by sbhikes View Post
                          Recently I have been enjoying a mug of French press coffee, black, in the morning. It sure makes good coffee. But the coffee is very strong. I have been getting sicker and sicker every day that I've been having a cup of this coffee. The last two days I've suffered terrible gas and an inability to sleep. Today I just felt horrible. I have had to pee a million times. I feel anxious and unwell. I'm bloated and my stomach is huge. How can you be peeing so much AND be bloated??? Anyway, caffeine intoxication. No more French press coffee! It's very good but it's also very very bad.
                          If I were you, I'd look at what kind of beans you are using. Arabica beans have 1/2 caffeine as Robusta beans. If the coffee is still strong, cut back on how many grams you are using. More info can be found on French Press Authority.
                          Resolve to Evolve

                          Jeff

                          Twitter: @jpickett1968

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                          • #14
                            I don't think it has anything to do with the press. What kind of coffee are you using, and how freshly ground? Anytime I drink bagged pre-ground coffee (folgers, et al) I end up feeling like I have the flu, and on a few occasions stayed sick for days. Fresh stuff from a local roaster is entirely the opposite.
                            “The whole concept of a macronutrient, like that of a calorie, is determining our language game in such a way that the conversation is not making sense." - Dr. Kurt Harris

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                            • #15
                              I was using the same French roast stuff I always buy from Trader Joe's. I cut way back on the coffee and feel infinitely better. At most I put about 2 level measuring teaspoons in the press now instead of an 8th of a cup. And when I get my second cup later, I make it half a cup. I think I will taper off the stuff because since I've cut back not only do I feel better but I think I have better definition. Could be a reduction in edema around the knees and ankles where it's most visible for me.
                              Female, 5'3", 50, Max squat: 202.5lbs. Max deadlift: 225 x 3.

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