The Coffee Lifeline
What Coffee Does?
In your brain, caffeine is the quintessential mimic of a neurochemical called adenosine. Adenosine is produced by neurons throughout the day as they fire, and as more of it is produced, the more your nervous system ratchets down.
Your nervous system monitors adenosine levels through receptors, particularly the A1 receptor that is found in your brain and throughout your body. As the chemical passes through the receptors, your adenosine tab increases until your nervous system pays it off by putting you to sleep.
The remarkable talent of caffeine is to mimic adenosine’s shape and size, and enter the receptors without activating them. The receptors are then effectively blocked by caffeine (in clinical terms, caffeine is an antagonist of the A1 adenosine receptor).
This is important not only because by blocking the receptors caffeine disrupts the nervous system’s monitoring of the adenosine tab, but also because of the players who make an appearance as this is happening.
The neurotransmitters dopamine and glutamate, the brain’s own home-grown stimulants, are freer to do their stimulating work with the adenosine tab on hold, and that’s the effect you feel not long after downing your triple shot skinny mochachino.
In other words, it’s not the caffeine that’s doing the stimulating. Instead, it’s keeping the doors blocked while the real party animals of the brain do what they love to do.
A May 2012 study published in the New England Journal of Medicine found that coffee drinkers “who drank at least two or three cups a day were about 10 percent or 15 percent less likely to die for any reason during the 13 years of the study.”
For one, after we drink a cup of coffee we become less drowsy and more alert. This can lead to increased productivity in the workplace. One study actually proved that caffeine increases cognitive function. This study measured the effects of 0, 12.5mg, 25mg, 50mg, and 100mg of caffeine on cognitive performance, mood, and thirst.
After receiving the dosage of caffeine the participants were then required to take two performance tests, a reaction test, and a rapid visual examination test. All levels of caffeine had a positive effect on those tests, thirst, and mood (Smit, 2000).
Due to the increased cognitive function and mood associated with caffeine consumption, it will bring about a more focused positive attitude and increased performance.
Behind every technological breakthrough there lies a dream. Behind every new product there lies a dream. Dreams create realities – through hard work.