This article isn't for those folks who have trouble sleeping. It's for the opposite side of the wheel - those folks who, occasionally, or frequently, have trouble staying awake.
How do you like your coffee? Coffee has been around for a good many years. In fact, the first mention of it is back in the 800s when a goat herder noticed that goats seemed happier after eating coffee berries. He tried them himself, and discovered they energized him as well. By 1995, coffee had become the world's most popular beverage.
Why does coffee have the effects it does? Why are some people more wide awake after drinking coffee? Coffee contains the stimulant caffeine. It increases heart rate and blood pressure and thus makes people more alert and awake.
If you like variety, you'll find it in coffees. The one with the least caffeine, is, of course, the decaf. However, it is impossible to get all of the caffeine out of the coffees beans. Many different flavors exist, including the new fancy flavored varieties. Try other varieties, including cappuccino, French roast and espresso.
Caffeine is found in other products as well as coffee. Chocolate, cola drink and many over-the-counter and prescription medication contain caffeine.
Another way to get your caffeine fix is by taking a little pill. They are easily accessible. You can buy them over-the-counter at your neighborhood drugstore. There are several brands, but, collectively, they are called "stay-awake pills." They aren't expensive, and it's easy to keep a bottle in your pocket or purse for those hard-to-stay awake moments.
There's no brewing involved, and no running out to a nearby convenience store or café. If you're a night shift worker, you might be unable to get away, or there may be no handy source of coffee. One pill is equal to 1 to 4 cups of coffee.
Warning: It's easy to overdose on these little pills, and that can cause health problems, including nervousness, stomach cramps, headaches and, in extreme cases, eve seizures.
For more on coffee and caffeine, watch for my follow-up article later in the week.