Your Brain On Coffee

Your Brain On Coffee

With it’s stimulating effects, it’s easy
to understand why coffee is the second most traded commodity on Earth after oil. For many,
it keeps us awake and moving through our busy days. But how does it work? What exactly does
coffee do to your brain? Whenever you’re awake, a chemical called
adenosine slowly accumulates in your brain. And this adenosine binds to receptors which
slow down brain activity – ultimately, the more adenosine there is, the more tired your
brain feels. Which makes sense, as the longer you’re awake, the more fatigued you become.
Conversely, while you sleep, the concentration of adenosine declines, gradually promoting
wakefulness. But it turns out that the caffeine in your
coffee is incredibly similar to adenosine in structure. The caffeine works it’s way
through your bloodstream and into the brain, where it starts to compete and binds with
adenosine receptors. But because it’s not adenosine, the ‘sleepiness’ effect isn’t
felt. Adenosine can no longer bind, meaning it’s calming properties are diminished.
Which is great for you when you’re feeling tired! However, with long term use of caffeine,
your brain responds by creating more adenosine receptors – which means more caffeine is required
to elicit the same response. It also means that when you try to quit drinking coffee
or miss your daily intake, you might experience some withdrawal symptoms and feel more tired
than you would have before you ever drank coffee! But the caffeine doesn’t stop there! It
also stimulates the production of adrenaline – you know, the Fight or Flight hormone? This
increases your heart rate, gets your blood pumping, and even opens up your airways. Furthermore,
it affects Dopamine levels by preventing its reabsorption in the brain, which makes you
feel happy! In fact, this is the exact same thing that cocaine does, just to a lesser
degree. It’s a drug, afterall! This dopamine stimulation is also the aspect of coffee that
makes it moderately addictive. So can you drink too much coffee? It turns
out there is a lethal dose of caffeine which is somewhere around 150mg of caffeine per
kilogram of your body. This means if you weigh 70kg you would require 14,000mg of caffeine
to overdose. Put into perspective, an average cup of coffee contains roughly 150mg of caffeine,
meaning if you are 70kg, approximately 70 cups of coffee would kill you. However, you’d
have to drink those cups all at once making it effectively impossible to overdose on caffeine
from coffee, since you wouldn’t be able to physically fit that much in your stomach.
You’d also start experiencing mania and hallucinations before getting to this point. Caffeine also has a halflife of around 6 hours
-so if you drank a standard coffee with around 150mg of caffeine, after about 6 hours there
will only be 75mg left in your system and you’ll be feeling half of the effect. And
6 hours after that, you’ll have 37.5mg – leaving more room for adenosine to jump back into
action. Which is why you may reach for another cup throughout the day, to maintain that glorious,
alert and energetic feeling. So drink up! And enjoy the buzz…while it
lasts 🙂 And for all of you in school, while we know
caffeine is key, so are good deals on textbooks! So we’ve teamed up with to
get you the cheapest prices for the books you need. All you have to do is head to
and search the ISBN number of the books your looking for. SlugBooks will then compare prices
from all across the net. Seriously, we know how expensive textbooks can be, so hopefully
this will save you some money! Special thanks to SlugBooks for supporting AsapSCIENCE. Got a burning question you want answered? Ask it in the comments or on Facebook or Twitter. And subscribe for more weekly science videos!

100 thoughts on “Your Brain On Coffee”

  1. Is it possible to become immune to coffee

    Because i chug it and it does nothing to keep me awake

    I just wanna get my work doneeee

  2. Caterina Christakos

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  3. I'm not sure how you did your math, but 150 mg/kg times 70 kg is 10,500 mg – your 14,000 mg calculation is off.

  4. Caterina Christakos

    Really video. I have made money with the 7 figure franchise program and have really made money with it. Click here to view my testimonial}:

  5. well I had some idea few days ago,I was not a coffee drinker,I drank maybe 5 coffees in my life,but since I was a child I experience hard times to fall asleep,so I thought to myself,maybe I can start drinking coffee and maybe this somehow makes me more sleepy at evening,so in the night I can fall asleep better,well this video somehow confirm this theory is it follows:
    I can grow my adenosine receptors by drinking 1-2 coups of coffee per day,so my adenosine receptors starts to multiplicate,and after that I can fall asleep easier in the night by having more adenosine receptors where adenosine molecules can bind,am I right?

  6. Coffee had no effect on me ever since the first time I tried it. But then you move on to bigger stuff that doesn't have that simple 150 mg, it has just about 750. Then you start feeling stuff, and then you get worried, because now 70 cups at once just wont kill. 10 in one day will, and isn't that interesting.

  7. False. Overdosing is using the amount of a drug at which adverse health affects appear. Overdosing happens long before lethal dose.

  8. maruxa cabaleiro saco

    I drink coffee in the mornig , afternoon and after dinner , even ,when I am too tired to sleep , I just have a cup of milk and coffee , and I sleep faster . I suppose I am a bit of an addict .

  9. hmmm if drinking much caffeine has the response of making more adenosine receptors do they also go away if you stop drinking caffeine?

  10. how should we stop eating coffe ? 🙁 I can Not control myself😭 I am eating more than the day before 🙁

  11. I had a full on panic attack earlier because I consumed 100g choc coffee beans and felt weird. I thought I overdosed and was one of my triggers for summer time depression.
    I’m okay now… I forgot about the caffeine in the beans. Scary to say the least

  12. I remember going to a friends house one night after work, and his brother and I were really into coke heavy at the time and I had drank the large cans of redbull before going into work, I made the mistake of doing about a gram and a half with them and we stayed up all night playing super smash bros melee till 5 a.m. and I was pacing back and forth around his living room because it felt like my heart was about to come out of my asshole. Needless to say I never touched a redbull again

  13. just do a caffeine fast for One week and everything goes back to normal , i do this every month so i can experience the full benefits with 1-2 cups

  14. I’m scared for doing something like I’ve got a job (work experience) I have to do for a week, I’m scared of talking one on one with my worker, so if I drink coffee in the morning would it help me to Carm down or make me not scared to talk?

  15. Weitter Kadenokouji

    I can drink plain coffee and I will still sleep like a baby. I wish coffee made me awake like the others

  16. Israel andersonHOME

    A few years back, I would always drink caffeinated soda, and I was really feeling the effects. One effect that overwhelmed all was anxiety. I constantly felt anxious. I decided enough is enough, and I went cold turkey. I cheated here and there, but eventually I quit. It is amazing how much better I feel now.

  17. The other addictive substance mixed with coffee is sugar.
    Remember to time your coffee's half-life to when you need to sleep.

  18. I do wish people would read and learn more. It's a psychoactive drug as well as a pesticide. It's a natural insecticide, covered in unnatural pesticides (unless it's organic) that can't be rinsed or boiled away.

    Some people are sensitive to it. Others have high tolerance. Some have an allergy to it and don't know it. This video is incomplete. You can experience mania and even a long bout of psychosis with way less than 14000mg!!! And it's not just a handful of people. Have you seen these pre-workout powders with 350mg or more per dose? It's insane. Btw, I'm far from a coffee hater.

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