The official blog of the Lung Institute.

Caffeine and Lung Disease

1 Jul 2015
| Under Lifestyle, Lung Disease | Posted by | 6 Comments
caffeine and lung disease

A Day in the Life of Your Average Caffeine Connoisseur

6:00 AM: The alarm goes off. Ringing, ringing, ringing. Snooze.

6:07 AM: The alarm goes off again. It only rings once before snooze is hit.

6:14 AM: The alarm goes off a third time. You finally turn it off as a sweet aroma washes into the room. You throw back the blankets and crawl out of bed.

6:20 AM: You brush your teeth, wash your face, and take your morning bronchodilators. Bunny slippers in tow, you pour your first cup of coffee.

6:45 AM: You finished reading the paper and pour your second cup of coffee.

7:30 AM: Shower, dressed, and ready for the door, you fill your favorite travel mug with the final cup of freshly brewed coffee.

8:30 AM: After battling the painful traffic of the morning commute, you stop at the Starbucks next to your office building. Double shot skinny vanilla latte with your name misspelled on the side. The usual.

10:00 AM: Two Monday morning meetings down, two to go. The best way to get through it: an espresso from the new office coffee machine.

12:00 PM: Lunch couldn’t come fast enough. A quick trip to Subway means a cold cut trio on whole wheat, a chocolate macadamia nut cookie, and a Coca-Cola.

2:45 PM: The afternoon fatigue has set in, so your team congregates in the office kitchen for coffee hour, but you swore you’d be healthier, so instead you opt for green tea.

7:00 PM: Finally, you’re home. Dinner plans include a small bowl of bean and sausage stew, a can of soda and the chance to watch a few I Love Lucy re-runs. As usual, you doze off and end up sleeping on the couch that night.


Where to Find Caffeine

For most people, the idea of going a whole day without caffeine seems crazy. Maybe you acknowledge your slight addiction to coffee, or maybe you don’t even realize how much caffeine you really consume each day. Caffeine can sneak into your diet in ways you don’t realize.


Coffee is the go to for a caffeinated beverage. Drinks such as lattes, cappuccinos, espressos, americanos, flat whites and more all contain varying amounts of caffeine. Even decaffeinated coffee options, both brewed and instant, contain a small amount of caffeine.


While tea may seem like a healthier alternative, most teas contain a decent amount of caffeine. Even the so-called “superfood”, green tea, comes with a dose of caffeine leaving drinkers with a small caffeine buzz.

Carbonated Beverages

A lot of carbonated beverages contain caffeine: sodas such as Pepsi, Coca-Cola, Mountain Dew and others, even non-caffeinated varieties, contain caffeine. Energy drinks such as Redbull, Volt, Monster and Venom also contain a large amount of caffeine.


We often don’t think about caffeine popping up in the foods we eat. The biggest offender: chocolate. A candy bar, a cup of hot cocoa and a hot fudge sundae all contain caffeine. Another food with surprising caffeine content is macadamia nuts.

The Effects of Caffeine on Lung Disease

The Cons of Caffeine and Lung Disease

The verdict is still out on the impact caffeine has on sufferers of chronic lung diseases like COPD or pulmonary fibrosis. Historically, researchers have believed that caffeine negatively affected sufferers because caffeine quickens breathing. For individuals who experience difficulty breathing or an inability to absorb large amounts of oxygen, this hastened breathing pattern could be dangerous.

Another danger, associated with caffeine and lung disease, is the potential for caffeine to interfere with medications prescribed to counteract the many debilitating symptoms of lung disease.

The Pros of Caffeine and Lung Disease

Recent studies are telling a different story. In 2009, a study conducted at the University of Texas showed the potential for caffeine to actually improve lung function. The study looked at the amount of coffee consumed, smoking habits and pulmonary function. The results were surprising. Smokers with lung damage actually showed an increase in lung function with an increased amount of coffee consumption.

Sufferers of chronic lung diseases may have more options than they realize. While caffeine is still being studied to determine whether it could be a potential treatment option, sufferers are finding relief and lung function improvement with stem cell therapy at the Lung Institute. For more information about stem cell therapy, contact the Lung Institute at (800) 729-3065.


  1. PB

    8 months ago

    Dear Logan,

    We’re glad to hear you found this information helpful. Thanks for your comment.

    Best Regards,

    The Lung Institute

  2. Logan

    8 months ago

    This website helped me a lot with my 7th grade science fair my question was does caffeine really affect your lungs and all my questions answered almost instantly its just amazingly perfect

  3. PB

    9 months ago

    Dear Tim,

    We haven’t heard of coffee as a way to soothe painful bronchial burning. However, we are glad to hear that you’ve found something that helps you. Please keep us updated about what you find, and we wish you the best.

    Kind Regards,

    The Lung Institute

  4. Tim

    9 months ago

    I looked up coffee and copd in the effort to find out WHY, when I have a painful bronchial burning, coffee soothes it completely away, like medicine.

  5. Cara Tompot

    2 years ago

    Currently, we do not have a clinic open in Houston, TX. We hope to have a clinic in Eastern Texas by the end of the year. Right now the closest clinic for you would be our Scottsdale, AZ location.

    We offer a couple of different stem cell therapy options: venous (blood-derived) and bone marrow. One of our patient coordinators can discuss which treatment options you may qualify for and the associated treatment process for each one. Our patient coordinators are available by phone at (855) 313-1149.

  6. Patsy Bolton

    2 years ago

    please provide more information on stem cell procedure. is there any doctor in Houston Texas using this procedure on COPD patients and other lung conditions?

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* All treatments performed at Lung Institute utilize autologous stem cells, meaning those derived from a patient's own body. No fetal or embryonic stem cells are utilized in Lung Institute's procedures. Lung Institute aims to improve patients' quality of life and help them breathe easier through the use of autologous stem cell therapy. To learn more about how stem cells work for lung disease, click here.

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