There are some scientists who believe that caffeine intake can cause or aggravate urinary incontinence.
In a study published in Neurourology & Urodynamics Paper in 2015, scientists studied the effects of regular and decaffeinated coffee on urinary symptoms in young and healthy volunteers.
The study focused on the effects of caffeinated and decaffeinated coffee on urinary symptoms.
Forty nine young men and women took part in the study. After subjects completed 5 days of caffeine abstinence they consumed regular coffee (450 mg/d caffeine content) or decaffeinated coffee (12 mg/d caffeine content) for 5 days. Previous caffeine use and urinary symptoms were assessed by a diet survey, urogenital distress inventory, and interstitial cystitis problem and symptom indices (ICPI, ICSI).
The study concluded that high caffeine consumption is associated with increased urinary frequency and urgency.
- Both urinary frequency and urgency were increased in the high caffeine intake group.
- No changes in urinary symptoms were noted in the decaffeinated coffee group over the course of the study.
- Coffee drinking habits before the study were an important factor in how caffeine intake affected urinary symptoms during the study.
- Participants who had a history of ‘low coffee use’ (less than half a cup per day) showed a more dramatic increase in urinary symptoms with high caffeine intake.
- In contrast, those with a history of ‘frequent coffee use’ (more than 1 cup per day) were less affected by regular coffee consumption.
- However, frequent coffee users showed a significant decrease in urinary symptoms while consuming decaffeinated coffee.
The study suggests that avoiding high‐dosage coffee consumption prevents urgency and frequency, which supports recommendations to limit caffeinated beverages.