Coffee: A Pick Me Up?

As I sip on my much needed coffee, I cannot help but wonder how this cup-of-joe gives me energy when all I want to do is take a nap. I’m sure you’ve seen adults frantically drinking their coffee at home or on the go every morning, but what is it? Coffee comes from a shrub of the bedstraw family that yields the coffee seeds, two of which are contained in each red berry. Most coffee is grown in tropical America and then distributed to places all over the world. Coffee contains a drug called caffeine. In humans, caffeine acts as a central nervous system stimulant, temporarily warding off drowsiness and restoring alertness.

There have been many studies on this popular drink to better understand how coffee affects us. According to Coffee & Health, the scientific institute for scientific information on coffee, caffeine can improve wakefulness in situations of reduced alertness or lack of sleep, like when studying late for an exam and then having to stay awake in your class the next morning (a situation I’ve been in many times).While caffeine may enhance memory performance, particularly when tedious, repetitive tasks are involved, higher intake may decrease performance, possibly due to over-stimulation.

Before you go brew yourself a nice cup of coffee, studies have shown that children should not consume coffee due to many possible health risks. Caffeineis absorbed in every tissue of the body. It increases your heart rate and as well as your blood pressure.  The brains of child are more sensitive to caffeine’s effects than the brains of adults. As a result, children can become hyperactive, nervous, and anxious, worsen stomach problems and create sleep problems. If you ever find yourself always depending on coffee to get you through the day I recommend you make more time for sleep. Remember everyone should be getting 8 hours of sleep a night!

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