New Research supports the positive effect of caffeinated coffee on mental performance. This suggests that a relationship has been established between a 75mg serving of caffeine (the amount in approximately one regular cup of coffee) and both increased attention and alertness, mainly in situations of lethargy 1.
Recent studies have also shown that drinking caffeinated coffee can help improve alertness. For example , drinking coffee can improve alertness and concentration during long distance driving 2.
Furthermore, brain mapping technology indicates that caffeine is not linked to dependence. This is supported by the fact that individuals do not develop a tolerance to the stimulant effects of caffeine 4. In fact, American Psychological Association also does not recognize caffeine as being an addictive substance 5.
Most people will consume a level of caffeine they are comfortable with, however, for some people a high level of caffeine may lead to hyperactivity or anxiety. These effects are usually short lived once the individual returns to his/her regular pattern of consumption.
Researcher Dr. Sophie Killer commented: “We found that consumption of a moderate intake of coffee – four cups per day, in regular coffee drinking males, caused no significant differences across a wide range of hydration indicators compared to the consumption of equal amounts of water. We conclude that advice provided in the public health domain, regarding coffee and dehydration, should be updated to reflect these findings.”
Current scientific evidence indicates that moderate coffee consumption (typically 3-5 cups per day) fits well with a healthy balanced diet and active lifestyle and may possibly be linked to a range of beneficial effects on health.
1. EFSA Panel on Dietetic Products, Nutrition and Allergies (NDA). (2011) Scientific Opinion on the substantiation of health claims related to caffeine and increased fat oxidation leading to a reduction in body fat mass (ID 735, 1484), increased energy expenditure leading to a reduction in body weight (ID 1487), increased alertness (ID 736, 1101, 1187, 1485, 1491, 2063, 2013) and increased attention (ID 736, 1485, 1491, 2375) pursuant to Article 13(1) of Regulation (EC) No 1924/20061. EFSA Journal,9(4):2054.
2. Sharwood L.N. et al. (2013) Use of caffeinated substances and risk of crashes in long distance drivers of commercial vehicles: case control study. BMJ, 346:f1140.
3. Smith A.P. (2005) Caffeine at work. Hum Psychopharmacol, 20:441-5.
4. Nehlig A. et al. (2010) SPECT assessment of brain activation induced by caffeine: no effect on areas involved in dependence. Dialogues Clin Neurosci, 12:255-6363.
5. American Psychiatric Association (2013) Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM V) ISBN 978-0-89042-554-1DSMV.