Looking to increase your productivity? Look no further than your morning cup of joe!
Coffee has been used throughout history by many great thinkers, musicians and artists. Find out how you can rev up your productivity with coffee!
What exactly about coffee makes us more productive? To better answer that question, we have to understand how the caffeine in coffee affects the body.
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How Caffeine Works
Every waking moment, neurons in the brain are firing away. As they work, they produce something called adenosine – a chemical compound in the brain called a purine nucleoside.
There are several different adenosine receptors in the body, but there is one in particular that caffeine seems to have the most affinity with, it’s called the A1 receptor.
When we consume caffeine from a standard cup of coffee, it heads to the A1 receptor and impersonates it. Because caffeine is so similar to adenosine, the body accepts it as its own and then binds with these receptors. What happens from here, in simple terms, is that they become “plugged” and the brain no longer produces its own dopamine and glutamate; instead, coffee has taken over that job.
This is good on one hand because caffeine can keep the brain from coming to a halt when you’re becoming fatigued and need a break. The caffeine comes in as an adenosine receptor imposter and starts producing its own stimulants. The bad news is that if drawn out, the body has a weakened ability to produce its very own. Therefore, the usage and amount of coffee consumption is very important! (1)
Most of the time, people drink coffee for a way to jump-start their day. Others drink coffee to carry them through an energy slump or to stay on task while at work.
So as long as you are aware of your purpose for coffee consumption, there are many well-documented benefits of the magic bean. Here are just a few ways that coffee can help boost productivity.
1. Coffee Improves Physical Endurance
It’s common for athletes to consume coffee for a competitive edge. Caffeine from coffee actually has ergogenic benefits, meaning it enhances physical performance. This is great news for anyone in manual labor and sports but also for anyone doing daily housework and basic exercise. (2)(3)
2. Coffee Protects Our Brains
The oils in coffee – kahweol and cafestol – are unique potent neurological anti-inflammatory agents that actually protect the brain against oxidative stress and DNA damage. An inflamed brain is surely a poorly functioning brain. Regular consumption of coffee can keep our brains safe from the many stressors and therefore, healthy for the long run. Be sure to use a French press, gold filter or good espresso machine to preserve these precious oils, though! (4)(5)
3. Coffee Increases Energy
Studies show that caffeine increases energy availability in the body.
4. Coffee Increases Motor Function
While most of us know that caffeine has the overall ability to stimulate us and improve our abilities, studies show that it’s not caffeine alone that is responsible. In fact, coffee in achievable amounts has the ability to improve both our cognitive and physical motor senses.
So whether you are busy at the keyboard typing and thinking, or out and about doing manual work, the consumption of a daily cup of joe can keep you going for longer. Coffee curves the decrease in motor and cognitive function as we age, so picking up a coffee habit might just serve you well later in life. (8)(9)
5. Coffee Increase Focus and Attention
There are several studies that have explored the effects of caffeine consumption on visual attention. Most of these studies have concluded that caffeine – found in coffee – increases both selective and sustained attention (maintaining focused attention over an extended period of time). However, more isn’t better when it comes to coffee; there is a point of diminishing returns.
6. Coffee Increases Endurance
Studies demonstrate that caffeine can extend the time it takes to reach physical exhaustion – decreasing our sense of effort during any sort of activity, even prolonged breathing. The studies concluded that caffeine is capable of doing this by enhancing muscle endurance, while simultaneously reducing our sense of effort commonly accompanying muscle contraction. (12)(13)
7. Coffee Rituals Increases Creativity
We know that coffee improves our ability to focus, but does this interfere with our creative thinking ability? Research suggests that coffee can actually help people to be more creative.
However, the research isn’t specifically from a chemical reaction from drinking the coffee itself; it’s from what coffee inspires. Coffee can be social and if you’re brewing your own, it can be a creative act in and of itself! Getting together with friends and co-workers over a cup of coffee can break through social barriers, leading to more free flowing conversations. A recent study shows that ambient noise and low-level sound prompts abstract thought processes. So be sure to take your coffee to the local shop or sip on your front porch — or even better, over a campfire sometime! (14)(15)
8. Coffee Helps You Learn Things Faster
How much more productive would you be if you could learn stuff faster? Well there’s good news, a study from PLOS One reports that intake of 200 mg of caffeine – 2 cups of coffee worth – prompts the brain to identify words and phrases more quickly. The study also found that coffee consumption leads to improved short-term memory and an increased ability to solve reason-based problems. Whether you’re learning new technology, attempting a new hobby or simply going over paperwork, coffee can give your productivity a boost. (16) (17)
9. Coffee Blended with Butter Helps You Burn Fat
When you blend a quality fat like grass-fed butter or coconut oil – as you see in Bulletproof coffee – it breaks up what are called micelles, which helps the body to use fat for energy. Fat as a fuel source of energy provides more stability than sugar for energy. Consuming sugar as a primary source of energy can produce energy highs and lows.
Metaphorically speaking, if your metabolism were a fire, consuming sugar is like throwing wads of paper on the fire, where fat is like a bright, slow burning log that goes all day.
Ever tried to accomplish something while hangry? It just doesn’t work. How this works comes down to our gut bacteria – when you drink coffee with fat, you temporarily suppress all gut bacteria. By temporarily starving them, they produce something called fasting-induced adipose factor or FIAF. FIAF blocks an enzyme called LPL, which tells the body to store fat. This means when FIAF is high, the body starts to burn fat, which means ketones. A ketogenic diet, involving a low-sugar, higher-fat diet rich in MCTs, has been shown to improve cognitive function. (18)(19)
(Read This Next: 9 Easy Ways To Make Your Coffee Healthier)