Myth #1 Caffeine is bad for your heart
MYTHBUSTER: A Harvard study found that people who drank up to six cups of coffee per day were at no higher risk. And studies have shown that people who drink three to five daily cups of coffee, on average have a 10-15 per cent reduced risk of cardiovascular disease, compared with people who drink more or fewer cups.
Myth #2 Caffeine causes dehydration
MYTHBUSTER: No, it won’t. While caffeine does have a mild diuretic effect, most people consume caffeine in beverages, so the diuretic effect is counteracted by the fluid that you’re drinking, explains leading caffeine researcher and neurobiologist Jennifer Temple, PhD.
Myth #3 Caffeine is addictive
MYTHBUSTER: Consuming caffeine does cause a small rise in dopamine, a chemical in the brain’s reward centre associated with addiction, but caffeine doesn’t produce the large surge that truly addictive drugs do. Giving up caffeine may make you experience headaches and jitters, but the drug doesn’t meet the criteria for an addictive substance. “Researchers are very careful not to talk about caffeine ‘addiction’ because the effects of caffeine are not in the same category as those of heroin, cocaine or opioids,” Temple says.
Myth #4 Caffeine can help you lose weight
MYTHBUSTER: Sorry, but while caffeine is a stimulant and has a mild metabolism-boosting effect, there’s no evidence that it can help you shed kilos (even though many weight-loss supplements list caffeine as an ingredient). “If caffeine had major effects, people who consume it regularly would weigh less than people who don’t,” Temple says. “And that’s just not the case.”
Myth #5 A large cup of barrista-made coffee has more caffeine than a regular cup
MYTHBUSTER: Nope. The same quantity of espresso is used, and it usually has 45-65mg of caffeine. You’ll need to order a double shot to boost the jolt you receive. You can also find strong varieties of coffee pods that contain up to 90mg per cup. By contrast, American-style brewed coffee has about 95-165mg of caffeine per 250ml cup.