Arguing Cause Belinda Corniea
  • I found this part of my paper to be particularly interesting: I didn't know a lot about caffeine myself before I started this arguing cause paper. I found a lot of the information about how caffeine is really a drug very interesting. I also didn't know that caffeine is in so many food, drinks and medicine.
  • This part was surprisingly difficult: What I thought was surprising difficult would be finding a good counter argument that you can pick apart. I had a hard time finding a good source & finding a way to include it into my paper.
  • Next time I would do this differently: Next time I am going to get a good head start on the paper. I always procrastinate until the end to do a paper and end up hating myself for doing so.

Caffeine. Is it healthy or unhealthy?

Caffeine is a big part of our daily lives. It is now in a lot of the food and drinks that we consume, it’s in some of the pills that we take, and even in some ointments/creams that we use. There are a lot of reasons why people consume or use caffeine. The most common reason why people use it is to feel alert and awake. Many people rely on caffeine to get them through the day. For years people have been debating whether or not caffeine is healthy for the human body. Countless studies have been conducted to find the truth about caffeine and its effects on the human body. Many studies have shown that caffeine does have some benefits when you drink it however; many studies have shown exact opposite. So which is it? Should we or shouldn’t we be consuming caffeine? Several of the problems with caffeine revolve around people’s misunderstanding of caffeine and its effects on the body.

There are two problems with society's attitude toward drinking caffeine. The first problem is that people are so uninformed about caffeine. People don’t know they are really consuming when they drink caffeine. Caffeine is a naturally occurring, flavorless chemical that is found in many plants. Some of these plants include tea leaves, cocoa nuts and coffee beans. It is found in a wide range of food products including tea, cola, chocolate and coffee. Caffeine is artificially added to many other products such as pop, candy, and energy drinks. Caffeine is also found in many pain relievers, over-the-counter diet pills and in cold medicines (Villanova University Student Life). Caffeine is a huge part of our daily lives and it is literally everywhere. Many people are unaware that they are consuming caffeine because not a lot of people actually take the time to read the food labels. The reason why people consume caffeine in such high amounts is because they are misinformed about caffeine. If people knew what caffeine really is and how it effects the human body, I think many people would find a substitute and stop drinking caffeine.

People are so uninformed of what caffeine really is that many people are unaware that caffeine is actually a drug. Caffeine is a drug because it’s a substance that, when consumed, alters the body’s function psychologically and physically. Caffeine is one of the most popular drugs that people consume on a daily basis. The average daily consumption of caffeine is estimated to be 70mg per person. 54% of the caffeine that is consumed is from coffee, 43% is from tea and 3% is from other forms (energy drinks, etc.)(Drug Aware, Caffeine the Facts). Caffeine is a stimulant drug and a psychoactive drug. It is a psychoactive drug because it alters thinking, behavior and mood. Caffeine is also a stimulant drug because it affects the central nervous system (CNS), the center that controls blood pressure, muscles and heart rate. It is known to raise blood pressure, increase urine flow, body temperature and sugar levels. Some other effects that people may experience when caffeine is consumed are: muscle tremors, dizziness, nausea, diarrhea, anxiety, irritability, insomnia, and blurred vision (University Health Service). Even though caffeine effects are weaker, it operates using the same brain pathways as heroin, cocaine and amphetamines (Villanova University Student Life). Caffeine affects each person differently. People who don’t drink a lot of caffeine or drink it on a daily basis tend to be more sensitive to its negative effects. Studies have found that men tend to be more susceptible to caffeine’s negative effects than women. How caffeine will affect a person all depends on their weight, gender, diet, type of exercise they do and the amount of caffeine they consume regularly (Mayo Clinic).

Caffeine is a drug and because of that it is actually possible for people to be addicted to it. People who are regular, heavy caffeine drinkers usually develop a tolerance for it along with becoming dependent. Being addicted to caffeine isn’t the worst thing in the world; however, people who are addicted will experience withdrawal symptoms if they stop drinking it cold turkey. Some of the withdrawal symptoms include: severe headaches, flu-like symptoms, tiredness or fatigue, poor concentration and irritability. These withdrawal symptoms usually begin 12 to 24 hours after the last dose of caffeine and may last up to a week (Drug Aware).

The second problem with drinking caffeine is that caffeine is bad for the human body. Caffeine has many negative effects to the human body when consumed at a high amount. Not only does caffeine have negative effects on the whole human body but it has the most negative effects on the human mind. Instead of just doctors studying and analyzing the effects caffeine has on the human body, psychologists have focused more attention on the effects as well. A study was conducted by a man named Greden who used a population of college students to see if caffeine had any effect on the human mind. Greden found that the students who drank caffeine in a moderate or high amount showed more depression and anxiety and poorer work performance than those who didn’t consume caffeine (Lubit & Russett 91). Other studies have been conducted that showed the same results but discovered that caffeine consumption can also cause anxiety about grade point average, muscle tension and stress in students (Troyer & Markle 407). College is when most young adults start drinking caffeine and where the addiction starts. Many college students use caffeine to help them stay up all night to finish homework or in the mornings to help them wake up when they have had a long night.

Psychiatrists have also connected caffeine consumption to mental disorders. Some of those mental disorders that have been tied to caffeine consumption are: people with anxiety, schizophrenia, psychosis and sleeping disorders. People with these types of metal illnesses can’t be drinking too many caffeinated beverages because the caffeine really affects their daily lives. They have to be monitored closely and watch how much caffeine they are consuming each day. A study was done that discovered that hospitalized psychiatric patients who consumed either moderate or high amount of caffeine had poorer physical health and were more depressed and anxious. These people had to stay in the hospital longer than those who didn’t consume caffeine (Troyer and Markle 408).

Not only does caffeine have negative effects on the mind but it has negative effects on organs as well. A study was done at Harvard that resulted in finding a strong connection between caffeine consumption and cancer of the pancreas. Pancreatic cancer is the fourth most fatal form of cancer. The study had discovered that two cups of coffee a day increased the risk factor of getting pancreatic cancer by a factor of 1.8 percent and three or more cups of coffee a day increased the factor by 2.7 percent (Troyer and Markle 407). Research has discovered that not only does caffeine raise the risk of pancreatic cancer but it also raises the risk of developing osteoporosis. A study was done with women at the ages of 65 to 77 to find out if drinking caffeine really does raise the risk of osteoporosis. The study found that women at these ages who drank more than 300 milligrams of caffeine daily showed a greater bone loss over a three-year period than those who drank less (Collins). Caffeine raises the risk of osteoporosis because it takes calcium out of the bones. The more caffeine you drink, the more milk you need to drink to replace the calcium that was lost.

Despite of all the studies that show us that caffeine is bad for the human body, people still drink it. These people believe that the health benefits of caffeine outweigh all the negatives effects it has. That’s right; there are some studies that show us that caffeine does have some benefits to drinking it. People drink caffeine for multiple reasons. One of the main reasons why people consume caffeine is to improve their memory and to feel alert and awake. Caffeine helps a lot of people make it through the day. Another reason why people drink caffeine is because it helps protect against type two diabetes. A 20-year-long study was done, with more than 125,000 participants, by researchers at the Harvard School of Public Health and Women’s Hospital. This study discovered that people who drink coffee regularly had significantly lowered the risk of getting type two diabetes, compared to the non-coffee drinking participants (Brown).

The debate about whether or not caffeine should be consumed will continue on for years and years to come. Studies will keep being done to find the most absolute truth about this drug that is consumed daily by billions of people. There are studies that show us that caffeine has negative effects on the human body when consumed at high amounts but there are also studies that show us that caffeine does have some benefits to drinking it. So should we be consuming caffeine? The answer to the question is caffeine is unhealthy when it is consumed in high amounts. Not only is caffeine unhealthy but people are unaware about caffeine. The choice of continuing to drink caffeine or to completely stop is up to you. What will you decide?

Arguing Cause Peer Review Belinda Corniea

Works Cited

"Caffeine the Facts." Drug Aware . N.p., n.d. Web. 6 Mar. 2014.

"Caffeine." University Health Service, University of Michigan. N.p., n.d. Web. 6 Mar. 2014.


Troyer, Ronald, and Gerald Markle. "Coffee Drinking: An Emerging Social Problem." JSTOR. N.p., n.d. Web. 13 Feb. 2014

Lubit, Roy, and Bruce Russett. "The Journal of Conflict Resolution." JSTOR. N.p., n.d. Web. 7 Mar. 2014.

"About Caffeine ." Villanova University Student Life. N.p., n.d. Web. 6 Mar. 2014.

Collins , Karen . "How much caffeine is too much?." N.p., 3 Dec. 2004. Web. 14 Mar. 2014.


"Caffeine: How much is too much?." Caffeine. N.p., n.d. Web. 12 Feb. 2014.

Brown, Emily. "Health benefits of caffeine outweigh any negatives." Collegiate Times. N.p., 2 Mar. 2010. Web. 15 Mar. 2014.


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