Coffee’s effect on brain shown in new video

It seems the good people at the Institute for Scientific Information on Coffee definitely have coffee on the brain. So with that in mind, they have put together an animated video showing your brain on coffee. The video, which is featured on their website, explains the science behind coffee’s effect on the brain. It explores the role caffeine can play in alertness and performance, as well as reviewing individual sensitivity and recommended intake levels.
Caffeine is considered to be the main component in coffee that impacts brain function. Extensive research has shown beneficial effects of caffeine in the diet, such as improved attention, alertness and physical performance. The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) concludes that a 75 milligram serving of caffeine helps to increase attention and alertness. Although caffeine content will vary according to processing and preparation, a typical cup of coffee provides 75-100 milligrams. The video details how after drinking a cup of coffee, caffeine is absorbed into the blood stream and transported around the body to the brain. In the brain adenosine acts as a central nervous system depressant and promotes feelings of tiredness. Due to its similar structure, caffeine may bind to the adenosine receptors, acting as an imposter and blocking the actions of adenosine, leading to feelings of alertness. Research suggests that coffee and caffeine may improve alertness in situations that require sustained concentration, such as long distance driving and driving at night, and may be effective in improving performance in people who work shifts or are suffering from jet lag. Genetic variability can impact how individuals metabolise caffeine, as can age (younger people seem to be less sensitive than older people). Regular coffee drinkers may be less sensitive to the effects of caffeine, and if someone drinks more coffee than they usually do, it may affect sleep patterns or lead to hyperactivity. These effects are usually short lived once a person returns to their regular pattern of consumption. The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) advises that caffeine intakes from all sources up to 400 milligrams per day (the equivalent of up to 5 cups of coffee) and single doses of 200 milligrams do not raise safety concerns for adults in the general population. Pregnant and breastfeeding women are advised to consume no more than 200 milligrams of caffeine per day from all sources (2-3 cups of coffee).

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