5 Surprising Facts About Caffeine

​​​​Caffeine is a drug because it elevates the central nervous system, increasing mood and energy. It is a widely used pick-me-up in the U.S., found in coffee, tea, soft drinks, chocolate and even some pain relievers. Read on to learn some surprising things you may not know about something you probably consume every day.

​The effects of caffeine can last several hours

When you consume caffeine, increased alertness can begin in as little as 10 minutes. However, the effects of caffeine reach their peak level in 30 to 60 minutes and can last as long as 14 hours, so if you have trouble sleeping, you may not want to consume caffeine in the afternoon or evening hours.

Dark roasted coffee doesn't have more caffeine

Some people assume that coffee with a more robust flavor equals higher caffeine content, but lighter roasts actually pack more caffeine. The process of roasting burns off some of the caffeine. 

​Drinking more caffeine won't wake you up more

The more caffeine you drink, the less your body will respond to the effects. Limit your consumption to once a day when you need it most. This could be in the morning when you first wake up or in the late afternoon when you hit a slump. 

​Caffeine is not addictive

There is nothing in caffeine that creates a physical dependency. You may get into a habit of drinking it every day, but you won’t be addicted. However, withdrawal symptoms can be real, but they should only last a few days. So if you plan to quit, don’t go cold turkey. Try reducing intake over a week or two.

​Thank your parents for your caffeine sensitivity

The breakdown of caffeine within the body is a metabolic process and genetics can affect this. If your parents are sensitive to caffeine, don’t be surprised if you are, too.

Read​ more about the effects of caffeine.