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07/23/2014 01:40 pm ET Updated Jul 23, 2014

Caffeine May Worsen Hot Flashes And Night Sweats In Post-Menopausal Women

Diane Diederich

That hot cup of coffee or tea you just can't start the day off with, may be keeping you up at night. And it's not just the caffeine.

A new study says caffeine may be the culprit in triggering more troubling night sweats and hot flashes in postmenopausal women. The Mayo Clinic-led study, appearing in the journal Menopause, surveyed over 1,800 women over age 40 with some sort of menopause-related issue.

Researchers observed a link between caffeine intake and bothersome hot flashes and night sweats in women. Nearly 85 percent of the women surveyed said they consume caffeine through tea, coffee, or soda.

However, for perimenopausal women, caffeine consumption was associated with a lessening of mood and memory problems, frequently associated with perimenopause.

Though nearly two-thirds of postmenopausal women experience hot flashes and night sweats, according to the Mayo Clinic, researchers say the findings don't necessarily mean you need to curb your coffee habit.

Lead researcher Stephanie Faubion stressed that the findings are only preliminary and that the amount of caffeine that worsens the symptoms has not yet been determined. But, she says, "If you're having bothersome menopausal symptoms and you're drinking caffeine, it might be worth considering cutting down a bit to see if it has an effect on your symptoms," adding that it doesn't mean you should cut out caffeine entirely.

Caffeine is often considered a trigger for menopause symptoms, known to exacerbate hormonal symptoms. And though you may rely on it to start your day off after a bad night's sleep, some experts say, it only makes things worse, by hindering sleep later on, which can effect your mood.

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