Caffeine: Pros and Cons
Caffeine is a mild stimulant, found in substances such as coffee, chocolate, and soda. It can cause fluctuations in psychomotor reaction time and increased sleep latency. It passes directly from the blood to the brain and affects many neurotransmitters. No long-term serious health problems have been conclusively linked to caffeine, but many concerns are still evident, especially about the dependence on caffeine as a drug.
It takes, on average, three to four hours to metabolize and clear half of the caffeine in the body. Age and consistency of use will affect this rate, just as they do alcohol tolerance.
The highest concentration of caffeine in the body occurs about 30 to 60 minutes after consumption. Caffeine can linger in the brain for nine to fifteen hours.
Caffeine deprivation, especially to those who use caffeine on a regular basis, can cause symptoms such as decreased vigor, increased fatigue, and headaches. Deterioration of mood is also evident.
Caffeine has positive effects, such as increased alertness and clear-headedness, but its negative effects, such as the headaches from withdrawal, do not justify the few advantages.