In this episode, I’ll share why you should avoid having coffee on an empty stomach. Coffee is not your grab-and-go breakfast as it may cause acid reflux or heartburn.
If you travel a lot for work or work in corporate America, you will grow into the habit of “drinking coffee like water”.
Yet if you don’t grow up in a coffee culture like me, I grew up in tea culture. You might not know some common knowledge about drinking coffee and can end up hurting your health or get heartburn.
Recently I’ve visited a friend who was seeing a doctor for acid reflux symptoms. She got heartburn. I wonder what she had been eating.
It turns out that she started drinking coffee on an empty stomach. She needs grab-and-go breakfasts due to a tight morning schedule. She started having coffee as breakfast.
I did that before and end up seeing a doctor, too. The doctor told me that caffeine in the coffee is acid, same as green tea and black tea. One should not have acid drinks on an empty stomach in the morning.
But don’t others get heartburn after drinking 10 cups of coffee?
I asked an American friend.
He said: Americans never drink coffee on an empty stomach. There is actually a saying “Coffee and Bagels”, always have coffee with some food. That’s why traditionally the coffee shops here always sell coffee and bagel or some sort of bakery.
If one must have coffee on an empty stomach, always add milk.
Last week I asked my British girlfriend: do British people do get heartburn from drinking so much tea?
She said British people always add milk in their tea.
What’s beyond coffee
Every country has its own food culture and common knowledge. Yet what is common knowledge in one place are not necessarily so for people from a different culture.
In Shanghai where I grew up, when we have crab, we always add ginger and yellow wine. Ginger and yellow wine, according to Chinese medicine are heat in nature. They balance the “cold” in crab.
A seeming random combo that no foreigners would understand unless someone explains to them.
If you are a business traveler or rushing for an early meeting, never drink coffee or tea on an empty stomach.
And what’s your experience having breakfast on the go on business travel? Love to see your comments below!
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