How Does Caffeine Work??

I listened to Episode 282 of “Stuff You Should Know”  Podcast today. It was about caffeine and how it can benefit & harm you. I actually thought I knew the benefits already, but I was wrong. There was so much I hadn’t heard before. First of all, these guys are sort of funny, dry humor, but I did chuckle a few times. I will be listening to more episodes! I love listening to Podcast while driving, especially ones I can learn from or get motivation from.  Leave a comment and share your favorites with me here!

Caffeine Photo

I drink caffeine daily, maybe you can relate? Coffee is my go to, every morning. This post isn’t about coffee per say…but that is where I get most, but not all, of my caffeine from. I rarely drink soda…my go to for caffeine other than from coffee is from a natural energy shot. Like a 5 hour energy but without all the junk & synthetic caffeine! This Healthy Energy Shot is made with adaptogens & natural forms of caffeine (yerba mate & green tea).

The guys from Stuff You Should Know, gave some tidbits about coffee in regards to caffeine. They state that a lighter roast coffee actually has more caffeine in than a darker roast. This was surprising to me! I guess the longer it roasts, the more caffeine is roasted out of it. Arabica coffee beans have 1.5% caffeine per bean, Robusta has 2.4%. If you’re looking for more caffeine, go for the Robusta bean. Grapefruit consumption can slow the removal of caffeine from your brain. Having grapefruit with your morning coffee can make the caffeine effect last longer! Who knew?!

Caffeine works by tricking your brain, it poses as adenosine.  Adenosine is a molecule that actually helps slow your neurons down to make you feel sleepy. Ironic! When caffeine mimics adenosine and binds to those adenosine receptors, your neurons speed up instead of feel sleepy.  Your neurons are stimulated (because caffeine is a stimulant), which in turn stimulates your Pituitary Gland to make Adrenaline which causes your body goes into flight or fight mode; your pupils dilate, digestion slows, blood pressure increases, your liver releases sugar into the bloodstream; you’re ready to fight! Once the caffeine wears off, the adenosine takes over and you feel sleepy…aka “the crash” you feel post caffeine. Your brain also releases dopamine with caffeine on board, which makes you feel good. Also a component that leads to addiction. When dopamine wears off, you want more of the stimulant to boost dopamine again. This cycle can cause sleep disruption. Note that caffeine’s half life is 6 hours. This means if you have a cup of coffee at 2pm with about 100mg of caffeine, at 8pm you will still have 50mg of caffeine in your system. For a comparison, Pepsi One (has the highest amount of caffeine of all sodas) has 51mg. Also note that the caffeine found in soda is synthetic vs naturally occurring caffeine found in coffee or the above mentioned Healthy Energy Shot.

Another great Podcast, all about the E+Shot 🙂

Lets talk about synthetic vs naturally occurring caffeine briefly. Synthetic caffeine is listed on an ingredient list as “caffeine.” Naturally occurring caffeine would be listed as Guarana, green tea, or yerba mate. Synthetic forms of caffeine are made by a chemical synthesis and can cause a quicker spike and a quicker crash, along with jitteriness, nausea, headaches, heart palpitations, nervousness, & difficulty sleeping. This is why I get my caffeine from coffee or the Healthy Energy Shot, I mentioned earlier! Also remember the FDA regulates the amount of caffeine & sugar found in soda, but they do not regulate energy drinks; you have to check the labels!

Caffeine is perfect for athletes! Caffeine gives you an increase in energy and feelings of alertness.  It also helps your mood & decreases your perceived exertion, making you more effective in your workouts. Your body will fatigue slower when you have caffeine prior. It also helps your muscles’ ability to use glycogen so they fatigue slower as well. Caffeine is not only good for your mental endurance, but also your physical endurance. Most athletes consume caffeine prior to working out. Caffeine and working out

The awesome thing about the Healthy Energy Shot I use, is it has adaptogens in. These are botanicals that help improve the body’s response to stress. Thus, it helps prevent the post caffeine crash!! The adaptogens act like a vaccine almost, inoculating you from stress. These energy shots also have real sugar in them, but not too much, since carbohydrates are necessary when putting your body under stress (exercising). Watch labels on other energy drinks that may have artificial sweeteners like Sucralose in them which are harmful to your health.

Also check out the clean pre-workout I’ve been using, Amped Nitro

Not me pictured below…but goals…haha 😉



How I Stay Healthy as a Mom of 4 😷🤧🤒

There is a nasty bug, or should I say MANY nasty bugs going around lately!! There are many things I’ve been doing to stay healthy this winter. Somehow, I have not been sick. Two of my kids keep getting colds (runny noses & rattly cough)but not limiting, they haven’t been down and out or anything. The older two of my kids have been healthy, my husband and I have also been healthy. Some things I’ve noticed that have helped us are here! I’d love to hear what has helped you too!

There are a couple of things we do everyday.

First, exercise! I truly believe this has had a major impact on our health. The days I don’t workout, I feel exhausted, it’s crazy! The days my husband does not exercise (they are rare), he is cranky. Exercise is so important, it actually helps rev up your immune system, releases those feel good chemicals our brains love, and helps the physique too!

Next, (literally in this order lol) we have breakfast. I truly believe the first thing you put into your body each day has a major impact on your health. We always have a well rounded breakfast. For example, most mornings I have a shake, it’s prepackaged, I just add water & ice then blend it. So simple. The one I use is a meal replacement, because we need the calories and it has the perfect ratio of macronutrients. Carbs, fat, & protein (and fiber, & many other nutrients & minerals too!) are completely balanced so I stay full till mid morning snack and I feel good! Sometimes, on the weekends, we will make a big breakfast. Same deal though, it’s balanced with carbs, fat, & protein. Egg bake, eggs, toast, avocado, bacon, etc. All the usual breakfast stuff, I just make sure it has around 20gm of protein, otherwise I’m hungry an hour later!

I also consume vitamins daily, sometimes twice a day when I remember my PM pack! This is key because although my breakfast is on point, my lunch, snacks, & dinner aren’t always. The vitamins, minerals, & telomere support help fill in the gaps that I’m not consuming. It also fills in the gaps of what I AM consuming because we all know that our food isn’t what it once was!

I do also make sure I get fruit & veggies in my body in some way, everyday. Generally, fruit is easy to get in (I love sweet things!). Veggies, not so easy. We usually end up throwing fresh veggies out because we don’t eat them quick enough. Frozen though, I always have on hand, and make a serving with dinner every night. Days when I’m not home for dinner or eating on the run, I’ll have my “Greens.” It’s a powder I buy that mixes with water and tastes ok, but I’m not really drinking it for the taste…more for the effect. I’ve noticed fuller hair, nails, and smoother skin from this stuff!! Love.

One more thing, Adaptogens! If you aren’t familiar, google! They are amazing and help control excess cortisol from stress. We have 4 kids, jobs, we exercise, we breathe air, and thus, we have stress! This day and age, we all are over stimulated and over stressed. This stuff works. No more anxiety. No more all-day-every-day fatigue. This is what has me sharing an amazing nutritional cleansing system with so many people. Seriously, if you haven’t tried, you need to contact me and I’ll get you hooked up! It’s legal, I promise.

Our health is also, literally in our hands. So, wash your hands!! This is a proven fact of helping to prevent sickness. I’m a nurse, in critical care, so I wash my hands umpteen times per day, I get it, it sucks in the winter, but it works & is so necessary. Sing The Happy Birthday song when you do so that you know you are causing friction long enough to get rid of the germs! Get your hands wet first, and scrub. The friction is what kills the germs. I also wash my kids’ hands, even the baby. Especially the baby’s hands, lol.

If you’d like details about the products I’m referring to, contact me! I’m part of a huge community of support, the quality is the best I’ve seen, and I love to help people. I’m a helper, a do-er, I care about you, and the health of our world! Low energy & sickness is not a thing in my life anymore and I want that for you too!


Cookies 🍪 & Cream 🥛 Protein Balls

I love keeping these on hand for lunches, snacks, parties, & play dates. My kids LOVE them. I LOVE that they love them because they are a healthier treat 😁 and they are super easy to make! Store them in the fridge.

4 scoops Cookies & Cream Isalean Shake

1 1/3 c. Nut butter

1/4 c. Agave

1/8 c (ish) Flax, Cold-Milled (optional)

1 1/3 c. Old Fashioned Oats

1/4 c. Mini Chocolate Chops(optional)

My First Blog Post

I am Holly. A mom of 4 kiddos, 3 girls and a boy. They inspire me everyday and the adventures I’ve had with them have led me to want to write here. I am a nurse and have been the past 11 years, 10 of those years spent working 12 hour shifts at a local non-profit Hospital in Critical Care. In my spare time I like to inspire others to lead a healthier life through nutrition & exercise. I have a virtual health & Wellness franchise and am partnered with an awesome company. See more about them here Convenient Nutrition .

I like to shop via Stitch Fix & Trunk Club. I wish I could sign up for every subscription beauty box. I’m not very “up” on all the fashions, I’m more about comfort and ease. I generally live in leggings & tunics, sweaters, or workout clothes. Lulu is my fave. This is why I like these fashion subscription boxes, they send stuff that’s on trend and looks good together! Another favorite is FabFitFun.

My husband and I like to travel, go out to eat, drink IPAs & red wine. 🙂 With 4 kids under 8, it’s the small things we enjoy. We don’t get away or go out without them often. A couple favorite cities we have traveled to are Fort Collins, San Francisco, and some we want to go to are Seattle, Austin, & Nashville. We live in the Midwest where it’s super cold in winter. Skiing helps us get through the long winters. One of these years we will get out west to ski! We both enjoy fitness. I’ve ran one half marathon, he’s ran several, including a full marathon & a mini Tri. We own a Peloton bike & love it. I’ve recently started lifting more weights at a training facility called D1 & have been loving it! Unfortunately, they’re closing in February 😆 so I have to find something to replace! I do subscribe to a cool at home workout series that includes great recipes & incorporates TRX & 100 reps, it’s called Praxis Health & they even have a nice app!

I’m typing this as I breastfeed (maybe some of you can relate??) my littlest. She’s 15 months old and does not want to give up the breastfeeding snuggles. Which, is fine with me, most days. In the middle of the night it gets a little annoying…but I try to be positive and remember how quickly they grow and soon don’t want to snuggle at all 😭. Currently she has a nearly constant runny nose, so she’s been up in the night a lot! I am new to blogging but have been thinking about it a long time! I honestly wish I had started sooner. I’m excited to have it for memories with my kiddos. I also love to share information, especially health related. Many of my patients are in situations that may have been prevented by healthier habits! My husband is an amazing cook (the no recipe type!) so I hope to share some quick easy healthy homemade meals & snacks here too. Ok so this first one isn’t healthy lol…banana split, vanilla bean Edy’s icecream, chocolate syrup, & blackberries. So good. Life is all about balance. <img