Can Coffee Give You Food Poisoning

Can Coffee Give You Food Poisoning?

Yes, coffee can give you food poisoning. However, food poisoning from coffee results from many triggers, including contamination.

Typically, things such as eggs, meat, and milk are the biggest culprits of food poisoning.

However, if you start to feel discomfort after drinking coffee, it’s only natural to question whether coffee may induce food poisoning.

Keep reading to learn the following:

  • Why coffee may give you food poisoning
  • What you can do to avoid food poisoning from coffee

What Triggers Food Poisoning From Coffee

Although uncommon, coffee may result in food poisoning. Since nutritionists classify it as food like other foods, such as meat, there’s always a possibility of developing food-borne illnesses after consuming coffee.

In certain circumstances, coffee may leave you nauseous, mainly if you drink it before breakfast, but that does not imply that you have food poisoning.

Here are several reasons why coffee may cause food poisoning.


Contamination is the main reason why coffee might induce food poisoning. That includes both microbial and fungal toxins.

If coffee undergoes proper roasting, contamination is quite unlikely. However, under-roasted coffee provides ideal conditions for the growth of bacteria.

Furthermore, leaving coffee at room temperature for a long time promotes high microbial growth. That gets even worse if your coffee contains creamer.

Although some individuals enjoy sipping their coffee leisurely for an hour or two, doing so exposes your body to contaminants inducing food poisoning.

It’s better to consume your coffee as quickly as possible to avoid compromising its flavor due to the breakdown of protein components.

Moreover, you could be suffering from food poisoning after consuming coffee due to a dirty coffee maker.

When your coffee-making machine has seen better days without being cleaned, there are higher chances of contamination. Such a machine becomes a breeding ground for salmonella and E. coli.

The outer layer of coffee beans is fatty and oily. The coffee beans you use to brew your coffee at home are raw.

They harbor germs and other pathogens that, under the appropriate circumstances, could get you ill.

While coffee beans’ microbial infiltration can occur during manufacturing in underdeveloped nations, it’s uncommon to happen once they reach their destination.

That’s assuming you haven’t preserved the beans at inappropriate temperatures for long.

A Case of Bad Coffee Creamer

Sometimes it’s not the coffee itself that’s bad, but rather the creamer. A creamer sitting in the fridge for a long time may have spoiled.

That’s likely to trigger a digestive reaction, resulting in stomach issues like diarrhea, vomiting, and nausea.

In addition, your coffee creamer may grow toxins and molds, leading to discomfort upon consumption. Therefore, always remain vigilant of the coffee creamer you use.

Presence of Mycotoxins

Molds can contain substances known as mycotoxins. The microscopic fungus tends to be hazardous to one’s health when consumed.

Inappropriately preserved coffee is particularly prone to fungi contamination.

Ochratoxins A and aflatoxins B1 are the primary forms of mycotoxins in coffee. Besides triggering food poisoning, these substances may cause liver problems.

So, preserving your coffee as recommended is advisable to avoid potential health problems.

You’re Not Used to Drinking Coffee

Caffeine, one of coffee’s active ingredients, has been linked to side effects such as headaches, restlessness, and sleep loss.

If you’re not a daily coffee drinker, you might develop these symptoms when you consume large amounts at once.

What To Do After Getting Food Poisoning From Coffee

Here are several things to do if you suffer from food poisoning after consuming coffee.

Drink Water

You’ll need to drink a lot of water to replenish the fluids your body is losing.

Water is your best bet in maintaining hydration, but soup and apple juice are good choices to speed up recovery.

That also mitigates the coffee’s diuretic effects.

Have Enough Rest

Your body will need some time to rest. Thus, avoid depriving yourself of strenuous physical activities.

Ensure you eat in modest amounts because your stomach will need to rest too.

Overeating might trigger nausea or stomach distress. As your digestive system heals, you’ll need to increase the small portions you consume daily.

Once you return to eating normally, pay attention to how your body reacts.

Avoid Taking Caffeinated Drinks and Alcohol

Consuming caffeinated drinks is a bad idea when dealing with food poisoning. Avoid things like hot chocolate, espresso, sodas, and energy drinks.

While it might sound obvious, you’ll likely have snack cravings which would mean putting even more caffeine into your system.

If you consume alcohol, giving your body some days to recuperate is a good idea. That’s because alcohol increases the chances of developing diarrhea or heartburn.

Consume Food Rich in Fiber

Research suggests that eating foods rich in fiber may help reduce the effects of caffeine by eliminating it from the digestive system.

It’s also good for slowing down the release of caffeine.

As a nutritionist, I recommend eating fruits while waiting for your body to release the caffeine. You should avoid spicy foods because they’ll only make things worse.

Furthermore, digesting fat takes a little more work than carbs. So, don’t eat anything too fatty. That includes not spreading butter on your bread to hasten the recovery process.

See a Doctor

In most cases, food poisoning signs clear up within 48 hours. Diarrhea that lasts more than three days requires medical attention.

Always pay close attention to severe symptoms like headache and gastrointestinal discomfort.

If you’re experiencing any of these signs, don’t wait for them to go away before getting medical help.

Final Thoughts

Whereas food poisoning from coffee is very rare, that doesn’t mean it’s impossible. Discomfort might result from toxins or consuming coffee containing bad coffee creamer.

The best thing you can do for yourself, whether drinking coffee in a café or making a cup at home, is adhere to proper hygiene standards.

Nevertheless, the biggest concern with this condition is that most individuals make the blunder of waiting too long before seeking medical attention because they believe it to be a temporary irritation.

You should consult your doctor immediately if you feel uncomfortable after consuming coffee.

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