Everyone has that time of day when they feel the need for a pick-me-up, that boost of energy to help them get through the next challenge of the day. For 83% of Americans that might come in the form of a coffee beverage.
So if you are someone who staggers out of bed in the morning and stumbles to the coffee pot to get your day started or perhaps youre one who tells friends, family and/or co-workers, dont talk to me until Ive had my morning coffee, you might want to think twice before reaching for your favorite mug or stopping by your local coffee haunt on your way to work.
Scientists believe maximizing the effectiveness of your coffee drink might require you to hold off until the period between 9:30 and 11:30 a.m. This is due in part to the interaction of caffeine with a key human hormone known as cortisol. In short, cortisol helps to regulate the bodys internal clock and promote alertness and cortisol levels are naturally high shortly after waking up and remain high for up to an hour afterwards.
Steven Miller, a neuroscientist at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences in Bethesda, Maryland, believes its better to drink caffeine after this peak as to promote cortisol production. If we are drinking caffeine at a time when your cortisol concentration in the blood is at its peak, you probably should not be drinking it, Miller says.
Maximizing your coffees effectiveness isnt limited to just the morning hours. Scientists have also found cortisol is responsible for synchronizing the internal daily rhythms that operate in the body and even further research states that drinking coffee in the afternoon can help to offset lapses in attention that occur after a large lunch.
This may explain why the foodservice industry is seeing a large uptick in coffee-based beverage consumption in the afternoon. Demand for iced coffee in the afternoon is increasing quickly According to research firm NPD, over 25 percent of iced coffee consumption takes place after 1 p.m. and the firm projects that number to potentially increase by seven percent in the year ahead.
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