Jake Petz ’14 – Opinion
Caffeine is in countless foods and drinks, used as an energy booster, and is found in everyday consumption. Students pick up coffee from starbucks, and buy energy drinks at speed way every day, filling their lust for caffeinated fuel. There are countless diets preaching the abstinence from caffeine from a health standpoint, but in reality caffeine is not bad for you.
Caffeine has been labeled as a drug because of its shared traits with much more dangerous substances, mostly involving addiction. This natural chemical isn’t nearly as addictive as things like cigarettes, and most people drink caffeine because they want to and not because of an addiction.
Late night study sessions leave many high school students exhausted in the morning, and they often turn to caffeine as a way to make it through the day. Alexander Stefansky (12) is one of a large number of students who look to caffeine for a source of energy.
“Sometimes I feel so lazy and stuck in my bed in the morning, not ready for the drone of the day, so I need a cup of coffee thrown into the schedule,” Stefanski said.
Mr. Lewis Paige, an art instructor at RETC, relies on coffee as a way to cope with the stresses of teaching. He says he drinks an estimated amount of 12 cups of coffee by his third hour class.
“It’s an ingrained habit,” Paige said. “I like the warmth of the drink and it helps me get through my day”.
Side effects known with caffeine are feelings of jitteriness when consuming, and the feeling of drowsiness or “crash” after the product wears off. Other than this there is really nothing to worry about except for the inability to sleep after consumption. There are rumors regarding caffeine stunting growth, but according to studies done by businessinsider.com these rumors have been proven false.
Caffeine is truly not unhealthy in regular amounts. What is really to blame are the products people consume to get their fix. When someone drinks a chocolate latte with whipped cream or an energy drink with hundreds of added chemicals, it becomes a problem. The amounts of sugar added to these foods and drinks is outrageous. So no matter what the caffeine-free diets say, caffeine is not to blame.