What's in the Cup?

By: Erin Curran

Caffeine is in almost everything- from coffee to makeup, but what is in this waker upper that everyone depends on?

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What is it?

Caffiene is a bitter, white crystalline xanthine alkaloid. It is classified as a stimulant drug and is found in the seeds, leaves, and fruit of some plants, where it acts as a natural pesticide, paralyzing and killing insects that feed on it.

411 on Caffiene

The main methods of getting caffeine are through oral ingestion mostly from coffee and energy drinks. Though there are no street names for it, but there are many slang terms, such as:
  • Java
  • Joe
  • Black Gold
  • Eye opener
  • Cup of mud
  • Get up and Go

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Being a stimulant drug in itself is already going to affect a person's state of consciousness, but caffeine is one of the most well known eye openers there is, in fact its one of the slang terms used (see above). The very point of this drug is to change a person's attitude, to make them more awake an less drowsy. This is one of the reasons it is prescribed by doctors to those with short term drowsiness. The long and short term effects are as followed:

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Addiction and Dependence

When a person is going through a caffeine addiction some noticeable changes will be discovered when going without it. When going from having a cup of coffee a day to having 2-3, that's when you know you're in deep. Many people who have noticed that before when they could go a couple days without it to a couple hours have suffered severe migraines, extreme drowsiness, and trouble to complete daily activities.

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Caffeine helps weight loss


It would take 35 cups of coffee to lose one pound per day. Caffeine can speed up metabolism, but there has been no long-term benefit to weight control. In a study, more than 58,000 health professionals were followed for 12 years, both men and women who increased their caffeine consumption gained more weight than those who didn't.