Your Brain On: Coffee
For most college students, coffee functions as an eye-opener when they need to go to classes early in the morning and a stimulant when they have to study late at night for an exam. Coffee helps feel sharp and lucid, and most people think that its effects end right here. However, that’s not truth. There are many other ways this delicious drink positively affects your memory, mood, and brain functioning. Let’s see what they are!
Benefits of Coffee for the Brain
It Perks You up
Caffeine – the element in coffee that makes you alert and awake – works by ceasing the production of neuro-chemical receptors that are commonly produced in response to the hormones that make a person feel exhausted and trigger the desire to fall asleep. In the meantime, caffeine boosts the production of such chemicals as dopamine and glutamate that give you additional energy. Thus, caffeine actually functions like a DJ at a party. It turns on the music that keeps you going.
It Enhances Your Memory and other Processes
A recent study held at the John Hopkins University has shown that caffeine consumed in certain amounts increases the information retention by approximately 10 percent. It is done by boosting the brain chemicals that are responsible for memory storage. Other evidence shows that caffeine improves the sense-based perception. Besides, one of the studies has proven that brain sensitivity to sound, color, and light increases after drinking coffee. For this reason, most students find it useful to drink coffee while preparing for exams. Multiple researches also suggest that caffeine increases focus, improves decision-making skills, boosts the attention span, and even helps prevent dementia and other age-related ailments.
It Boosts Your Mood
If you feel blue or even depressed, a cup of coffee might help you cheer up. A number of studies have proven that caffeine increases the production and activity of serotonin – a so-called “hormone of happiness.” Moreover, one of the studies also suggests that drinking coffee in the morning makes people feel more delighted and welcoming.
A Couple of Things to Look out for
Do not Overdo
If you consume too much caffeine, you can increase your stress as well as the feelings of anxiety and tension. You might want to ask “What is the limit?” Well, it mostly depends on you. The amount of caffeine that is good for you depends on the amount of caffeine your organism may deal with. So if you drink two cups per day and feel fine, keep on. And better don’t increase that amount.
Avoid Getting Addicted
According to multiple studies, caffeine consumption is a tolerance- and habit-forming. In other words, if you constantly stimulate your brain with coffee, it might happen that it won’t function as well if you don’t drink coffee. It makes you increase the consumption to attain the same result.
The bottom line is: if you like coffee and feel that it helps you study, drink it. But be careful and don’t form an addiction!