No, I don’t mean the kind of buzz that precedes “tipsy” or “drunk”, I mean the kind of buzz that keeps your brain alert even after sleep deprivation: caffeine.
You’ll find it in the hands of an elderly gentleman perched on a Starbucks bench reading the morning paper. You’ll find it in the hands of the under-prepared freshman cramming in the library before her next exam. You’ll find it in the hands of frantic businessmen in the most prominent corporate offices downtown. You’ll find that caffeine is America’s favorite drug. Actually, it is the most commonly consumed psychoactive drug in the world! Unlike most drugs, this one typically does not come with “directions” on how to take it! Can you believe that?! The most used drug in America is left for all of us to just cross our fingers and hope that we take it correctly. Has it been possible that you’ve been drinking your Cup o’ Joe incorrectly your entire young adult life!?
Most of us (myself included) take a huge jolt of caffeine in the morning to jump start their day- I mean hellooooo Starbucks Venti Iced Latte. According to a recent Harvard Medical School study, this causes your caffeine levels soar quickly, but fall as your day progresses and as your sleepiness rises. As the day goes on though, you get drowsier and less alert- just when you need the caffeine the most, it is not even in your system! The Harvard study shows that it is better to take low doses of caffeine frequently throughout your work day, rather than a very large dose of caffeine concentrated just in your morning Starbucks run.
The maximum daily caffeine intake that is considered “healthy” is a dose of up to 400 mg a day. This amounts to approximately three 8-ounce cups of coffee, OR four cups of tea, OR six 12-ounce sodas. Not only should you try to stay below the 400 mg, but you should also taper off caffeine as you go about your day. Begin your day with the most highly caffeinated drink and ease off the intensity as your day goes on tapering off so that you are easily caffeine-free by the mid-afternoon.
We have come up with a way for you to stay buzzed ALL DAY at work, for the typical 8-5 work day:
7:30am Starbucks Tall Brewed Coffee [180mg]
Get your morning going with a bold strong coffee for an immediate and effective caffeine boost! The average US commute time is 25 minutes and studies show that the amount of caffeine circulating in your blood peaks 30-45 minutes after you have consumed it. This will put you at work at 8am completely alert and ready to begin your day full force.
10:30am Lipton Green Tea 8oz [35mg]
A couple hours after you arrive at work, be sure to keep your buzz going to lunch with some green tea. As you can see, the caffeine level has begun to taper off with only 35mg, and not only that, but drinking the green tea before your lunch break will help your body store your lunch’s carbohydrates into energy instead of storing them as fat- giving you more energy and less weight gain! Bonus!
12:30pm Coca-Cola (or other caffeinated soft drink) 12oz can [90mg]
A caffeinated soda to accompany your lunch will help you push that buzz through the post-lunch food coma!
2:30pm Bar of Hershey’s Dark Chocolate [20mg]
Mid-afternoon, taper off your caffeine buzz completely with a bar of chocolate to get you through to your 5pm adios to the office. Studies show that late-afternoon caffeine can cause problems for your sleep, so be sure to not have anything with too much caffeine this late in the day to avoid sleep disruption later. Chocolate proves the perfect candidate to finish off the work day buzz since it’s caffeine levels are so low.
The final caffeine count for the day puts you at 315mg- which is still under the 400 limit!
So, darlings, use America’s #1 addiction to your advantage, and stay alert at work tomorrow all day long! Our foolproof plan doesn’t replace a good night’s sleep, but it sure will help you stay buzzin’ when last night’s midnight HIMYM marathon starts to catch up to you at work the next day! Now if you’ll excuse me, there’s a fresh pot of coffee that’s calling my name!