Beneficial Effects of Caffeine

Many scientific studies have shown that caffeine improves concentration, alertness, reasoning, intellectual effort and vigilance (1-5)

This effect can help counter `post-lunch dip’ in concentration, and overcoming drowsiness in motorists and nightshift workers thus reducing the risk of accidents (6).  The Department of Transport in its Think! Don’t Drive Tired campaign recommends a couple of cups of coffee as an effective method of alleviating driver fatigue (www.dft.gov.uk)

Studies have also shown that drinking strong coffee when there is a demanding physical task ahead helps people to keep going longer and staves off exhaustion (7,8,9).

Caffeine increases kidney blood flow and may help protect the kidneys against stone formation.  Drinks containing caffeine may help prevent kidney stones in both men and women according to recent research (10, 11).

Caffeine has long been known to help asthmatics and many have found regular consumption of coffee to assist in moderating attacks. (12, 13)

Research from Bristol University has demonstrated that drinking coffee has been shown to add a `feel good’ factor and lift some of the sluggish symptoms that are the common after-effects of a cold. (14)

Several research papers have been published in the early 2000’s that have suggested coffee drinking may be protective against the development of Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s disease. (15, 16, 17,18).

Recent research has also shown that coffee may be protective against developing Type 2 diabetes (19, 20, 21).

 

Beneficial Effects of Caffeine – References

  1. Smith, A.P. et al. Neuropsychobiology, 26, 198-204, 1992
  2. Smith, A.P. et al. Neuropsychobiology, 27, 217-223, 1993
  3. Smith, A.P. Journal of Psychopharmacology, Volume 11, 319-324,1997
  4. Bonnet, M.H. et al.  Sleep, 18, 97-104, 1995
  5. Warburton, D.M. Psychopharmacology, 119, 66-70, 1995
  6. Liebermann, H.R. Caffeine.  In: Smith, A.P and Jones, D.M. (eds) Handbook of Human Performance, vol 2.  Academic Press, London, pp. 49-72, 1992
  7. MacIntosh, B.R and Wright, A.M. Canadian Journal of Applied Physiology, 20, 168-177, 1995
  8. Pasman, W.J. et al.  International Journal of Sports Medicine, 16, 225-230, 1995
  9. Ferrauti, A. et al.  Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness, 37, 258-266, 1997
  10. Curhan, G.C. et al. American Journal of Epidemiology, 143, 240-247, 1996
  11. Curhan, G.C. et al. Annals of Internal Medicine, 128, 534-540, 1998
  12. Schwartz, J. and Weiss, S.T.  Annals of Epidemiology, 2, 627-635, 1992
  13. Pagano, R. et al. Chest, 94, 387-389, 1988
  14. Smith, A.P. et al. Journal of Psychopharmacology, 11, 319-324,1997
  15. Webster Ross G, Abbott R.D, Petrovitch H, et al.  Annals of Neurology, 50, 56-63, 2001
  16. Checkoway H, Powers K. Smith-Weller T, et al.  American Journal of Epidemiology 155, 732-738, 2002
  17. Maia L and DeMendonca, A.  European Journal of Neurology, 9, 377-382, 2002
  18. Lindsay J et al.  American Journal of Epidemiology, 156, 445-453, 2002
  19. Johnson et al. Journal of Internal Medicine, 225, 2003
  20. Salazar-Martinez et al. Annals of Internal Medicine, 140, 2004
  21. Tuomilehto et al. Journal of the American Medical Association, 291, 2004

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