Does Coffee Wake You Up? The Science of Coffee

Let's Talk About Coffee for Energy, Memory, Headaches, ADHD, and More! 

Rolling out of bed to face the day isn't always easy. Sometimes, that snooze button seems like a genuinely good idea! Picture this, it’s 7:30 in the morning and you have an hour to get ready before you need to head to work. It’s rainy and cold outside, and the idea of getting moving simply isn’t hitting home. Then, you catch a whiff of fresh coffee brewing in the kitchen. Someone has already started a pot of Java and it’s ready for cream and sugar. Talk about an encouraging motivator! 

Or, maybe you just left your hotel in an unfamiliar city on your way to an event. You’re not in the very best of moods, so you Google “coffee near me” to find the most opportunely placed coffee shop near you. As the barista hands you a delicious latte, you take your first energizing sip of “wake-up fluid” and all seems well. 

But First, Coffee.

Either way, the catchy slogan “But First, Coffee” hits home with many of us. After all, what else can get us up and going like a fresh cup of Joe, latte, or Americano with cream? But exactly why does coffee wake you up, and how does that all work? Are the effects psychological, or is there something more at play here? 

In this blog, we will look into just why coffee gives you energy and how that actually works. Below, we are going to cover how coffee gives you energy, what to know if coffee doesn’t wake you up, and even some coffee ADHD facts for those looking to better understand the effect of coffee on the mind and body. Let’s get to it!

How Many People Drink Coffee: Interesting Coffee Stats in the United States 

For many people across America, waking up simply isn't the same without a fresh cup of hot coffee. Of all of the morning energy drinks available, coffee is without a doubt the top option in the United States. In fact, If you were wondering how many people drink coffee in the US, statistics reveal that 64% of adults in America consume it every day. 

Moreover, some studies indicate that people in America consume more than 400 million cups of coffee daily! That's 146 billion cups of coffee every year. And as far as whether men or women drink coffee more coffee, the numbers are roughly equal. In America, 66% of women and 62% of men consume coffee regularly. 

But why is there so much popularity around coffee? Well, most would agree it’s because it gives us energy. 

Does coffee wake you up?

Coffee contains caffeine, a stimulant that is quickly absorbed in the digestive system and distributed throughout the body. Caffeine affects the brain as well, where it elicits the classic effect of “waking you up”. So yes, coffee wakes up most people. However, things are a little bit more complicated than this. Let’s get into why caffeine gives you energy. 

What is caffeine? 

Caffeine is a stimulant that affects the central nervous system. It's used as a cognitive enhancer because it increases alertness and performance. Caffeine can help people pay better attention by blocking and binding something known as adenosine. This blocking action enhances the release of a substance from your neurotransmitters called acetylcholine

Caffeine also increases cyclic AMP levels. Caffeine can be found in many plants, fruits, nuts, seeds, and leaves. Some scientists theorize that plants produce caffeine to attract insects. One of the most popular plants to produce caffeine is the Coffea plant, which, you guessed it, yields coffee. Okay, so now that you know this, does caffeine give you energy? 

How does caffeine give you energy? 

To simplify things, you should understand that caffeine doesn’t so much “give” you energy as it “takes away” the feeling of being tired. You see, caffeine gets in the way of a neurotransmitter called adenosine. This increases the way other neurotransmitters in your brain can function to regulate your energy levels. When it comes down to it, caffeine is a stimulant that mildly affects the central nervous system and helps you feel more awake. 

Can caffeine stop migraines? 

Researchers speculate caffeine relieves migraine headaches because it has vasoconstrictive properties. Caffeine has an effect on neurotransmission, blood flow, and inflammation. It can also impact your dopamine production. For these reasons, some doctors believe that caffeine may help prevent migraines in certain people. In many instances, migraines are caused by issues with neurotransmission in the brain. Additionally, when your neurotransmitters are stimulated in different ways, it can sometimes stop severe headaches. That’s why Excedrin Migraine contains caffeine and aspirin as two of its main ingredients. 

For some people, migraines are more likely to occur if sleep disruption has taken place. Additionally, those who suffer from migraines are likely to agree that insufficient evidence exists on the topic. If you deal with migraines, sleep regulation, stress reduction, and the maintenance of energy levels may play an important role. To reduce migraines, try to decrease stress, regulate your sleep schedule, and balance your neurological systems healthily.


Can caffeine help your memory?

Caffeine is known to have cognitive-enhancing effects and can impact your memory by enhancing your long-term recollection. According to findings in a double-blind study from Johns Hopkins Medicine, caffeine may enhance long-term memory. 

What if coffee doesn't wake me up?

Are you one of those people wondering “why doesn't coffee wake me up”? There could be a few reasons coffee isn’t working for you. If you are dehydrated, for example, your body might not be able to perk up with coffee, since coffee is a diuretic.

Also, you could have excess adenosine in your system, making you feel extra tired on a level coffee can’t help. If this is the case, put down the espresso and have a power nap. You may also have a caffeine tolerance, meaning that your body is used to the amount of caffeine you give it and now doesn’t react as strongly as you like. 

Why is coffee making me sleepy?

Can too much coffee make you tired? Sometimes, yes! This could be because your body is responding to epinephrine and cortisol being produced. If your body is responding to the stress by tiring out, you may need to take some time for yourself and relax. Being stressed to the point of exhaustion is rough on both your body and your mind! So, consider taking a personal day to focus on wellness and mindfulness.  

What about ADHD coffee use? 

You may have heard that ADHD coffee drinkers use caffeine as a way to calm down and stay focused. This theory correlates with mixed-result studies that conclude that caffeine is more effective for the self-regulation of ADHD than placebos or non-treatment. The "ADHD caffeine opposite effect" states that caffeine can sometimes have a sedating effect on people who suffer from attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. 

What is the best coffee to use for energy? 

If you are drinking coffee as a way to help you wake up in the morning, you should choose the brew you personally like best. Some types of coffee contain more caffeine, such as the Robusta bean. However, this type of coffee only has a little bit more caffeine and tends to be a lot more acidic and bitter. For this reason, most prefer high-quality Arabica coffee brewed nice and strong as a way to wake up.

At One Great Coffee, all of our brews are made with only the finest Arabica beans. We roast, custom grind, package, and ship your fresh Arabica bean coffee on the same day to deliver the tastiest energy possible in your cup! See our awesome organic coffee selection here. We also have delicious flavored brews to tantalize your taste buds and wake up your senses (and you)! 



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