Caffeine, good or bad?

I remember the first day I tried a cup of coffee, I made a face of disgust.  I never thought I could drink it at all within my life, but my mom kept telling me to wait- I would be addicted to her one day.  Consequently, she was 100% right.  If I had to endure a day without a cup of coffee, it will most likely be a huge struggle.  When I was in the 6th grade, I recall learning from my drug abuse program that a drug was defined as anything that you could form a dependence on, and caffeine fell under that category.  I finally developed a taste for coffee, and I now crave it at all times. I know I am not alone, and millions of other people around the world share the same addiction.


The effects of coffee definitely have had mostly positive effects on me (from what I know).  It wakes me up in the morning, gives me a wave of energy, and boots my morale. However sometimes it may give me a little “too much” energy.  If coffee is iced, I tend to chug it down fast, and my body shakes.  Sometimes I even get a headache.  Also, If I drink coffee a few hours before I am trying to go to bed, falling asleep can be a challenge.

So should I keep drinking it?

According to a study at Syracuse University, researchers performed an experimental study on a group of people manipulating the amount of caffeine ingested.  Some were given a caffeine drink, while others were given a placebo one.  The people that had the caffeine performed better at the given task, but the group that was given the fake caffeine still reported that they felt the effects. Caffeine definitely has similar effects as other drugs and alcohol on people’s bodies and brains.

According to a researcher at John Hopkins, caffeine can make someone anxious, increase blood sugar levels, and negatively affect the stomach.  This definitely does not sound enjoyable. However, scientists have done studies that provide evidence that coffee can decrease one’s risk of type 2 diabetes and some cancers.

There is no definite answer whether coffee is “good” or “bad” for your health.  There are studies that try to support both sides, but it is really up to each individual person to decide if the pros override the cons, or vice versa. Personally, I will take the risks because I enjoy drinking coffee every day, and the caffiene makes me feel energized.  Everyone’s body and mind are very different, therefore their reactions will be too.



8 thoughts on “Caffeine, good or bad?

  1. Charles Tyler Hart

    As you stated, there are so many conflicting opinions about caffeine’s benefits, or lack thereof, to our bodies and minds. If the Syracuse study was done properly, this definitely gives some momentum to the theory that caffeine does not actually make you feel anything, but rather it is a mindset. I would propose another experiment be done to test this theory. Add another group that does not drink coffee into the mix, and give half of them a placebo. If the group that receives the placebo believes they feel better after taking the fake coffee, it would align with the Syracuse findings.

  2. David Ross

    I hardly ever drink coffee. It has probably been months since I’ve had a cup. One thing I do find myself drinking is Red Bull and 5 hour energy. As college students we often need something to help us wake up for an 8 a.m. class since we probably had a healthy 3 hours of sleep. I just happen to rely on energy drinks for that temporary boost. I often wonder if drinking coffee would be healthier than drinking energy drinks. Even though I only drink sugar free Red Bull, it is rumored that energy drinks are bad for you. If coffee has some potential downsides, are the downsides for energy drinks even more drastic? Either way, we’re young, so none of that really matters.

  3. Derrek Koblinsky

    Caffeine is the only way I make it through my days, which may be a bad thing. I constantly find myself making coffee in the mornings. Speaking from experience I can tell you that there is a difference in my days when I drink coffee or Coca Cola (my favorite drink) and when I do not. If I do not have coffee in the mornings I find myself yawning or tired by 4 pm. If I do get my coffee in the morning I am usually good to go until around 7 or 8.

  4. Peter Bott

    I too am a caffeine junky. I’ve never heard of any negative affects from coffee itself, it is the caffeine you need to look out for. Most doctors (source below) say that anything under 400mg of caffeine is safe to ingest over the course of a day. So unless you’re drinking more than four cups of coffee a day you should be fine!

  5. Amanda Grace Thieu

    I’ve had a constant love/hate relationship with coffee my entire life. Sometimes I absolutely crave it and other times I tend to stray away as far as I can. Drinking coffee in middle school was the cool thing to do, you would go to Starbucks after school and drink coffee like it’s water. As I got older, I learned so many interesting facts about drinking coffee, like it stunts your growth (I’m 4″10) and that it stains your teeth. After hearing those facts I got too scared to be addicted to something that can harm me. Although reading new articles like this, it says that there isn’t any evidence that proves the hypothesis of coffee stunning growth! (in children)

  6. rbl5123

    I’m totally addicted to coffee and have no shame in saying that. Both of these studies really made me think about how much I drink coffee, but I’ve heard it all before. I’ve tried to cure my coffee addiction with ton’s of other things, but to no avail. I realize the older I get, the more “immunity” I build to coffee, so my coffee intake has increased dramatically since i started college. If anyone else is looking to kick their coffee habit this article has 14 different ideas!

  7. Patrick Winch

    I am not a coffee drinker. My whole family drinks tea, and a few of my friends drink coffee. But, strangely enough, one of my best friends from high school one day decided that he “had to” drink coffee every day because it was a part of being an adult, or something ridiculous like that. So, for pretty much all of senior year, Garrett came into school with a cup of black coffee, which he drank, despite the fact that he didn’t enjoy it. Now, he drinks coffee often, and at least claims that he enjoys it. This got me thinking, is it possible to convince our bodies that we like something? The article attached gives 10 ways in which we can attempt to convince ourselves of things.

  8. Anna Josephine Wisniewski

    Coffee is essential for me making it through the day. The Syracuse study is interesting, and a great example of how the placebo effect works. I think it is hard to say whether coffee is good or bad for you. I know some people become “caffeine dependent”, which can be detrimental to your health if you cannot live without coffee each day. Some people, like myself, will experience headaches or an extreme crash of overwhelming tiredness. I think that it truly depends on the person. I personally do not think there is anything wrong with coffee drinking, but again I am a little biased.

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