Coffee is a drug


I enjoy a cup of coffee.

In fact, I probably drink on average, 2 cups of tea, and 4 cups of coffee a day. Actually ‘mugs’ might be a better descriptor than cups – a ‘small’ drink is a dirty word in a coffee shop these days, it has to be a ‘Tall’ or a ‘Regular’ or a ‘Medio’.

Recently I’ve noted that my wife and some colleagues have started to go ‘decaf’, so I thought I’d look into some of the research out there on caffeine intake, and here’s some fascinating facts for you:

  • 80-100 cups of coffee in a day will kill you.
  • It takes around 5 hours for the caffeine to wear off (bear this in mind before bed unless you want to ‘dream faster‘ as Wutang Clan once discussed with Bill Murray).
  • It is the world’s most widely consumed legal psychoactive drug. Withdrawal symptoms – including potentially intense headaches, irritability, inability to concentrate, drowsiness, insomnia, and pain in the stomach, upper body, and joints – may appear within 12 to 24 hours after discontinuation of caffeine intake, peak at roughly 48 hours, and usually last from 2 to 9 days.
  • The body/brain becomes ‘tolerant’ to the level of caffeine that you are ingesting within 10 days – meaning you stop gaining any ‘highs’ unless you up the dose. There’s also debate (and clinical studies) that suggest you don’t get any ‘benefits’ at all.
  • Decaf contains caffeine.

I could go on, as there’s lot of articles and wikipedia pages into the potential positive and negative effects of caffeine on the body. Really, it’s a mixed bag.

Overall, I think caffeine affects each person in a different way, and you will make your choice and/or find your perfect dose. But, as ever, it pays to know the facts so that you can make an informed decision.

For me, part of my enjoyment of coffee is about the flavour, the experience, the connotations and the jitters. So I won’t be stopping any time soon. Though I may drink more water.



  1. Interesting stuff ! Expanding things slightly, this infographic helps show how coffee and beer may help us create and execute great ideas …

    1. Thanks Carl! Obviously many famous creative types are fuelled by alcohol ( ) but not sure how many corporate B2B marketers can use this excuse…

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