How Coffee Works

More like how caffeine works. And you’ll find a much more thorough explanation here, where I read about this. But here is the gist:

  • If you have never consumed caffeine before, it will initially increase your focus.
  • Saturation of this increase occurs after just two to three weeks of consumption.
  • At that point, the caffeine no longer increases your focus. Instead, you need it to reach your normal level of thinking.
  • Drinking more coffee will not further increase your focus once you’ve reached the saturation point.
  • Merely abstaining for five to ten days will return you to normal levels form saturation levels.


Lately I’ve been trying to decrease my caffeine intake. Most days I drink 20oz of coffee, and I usually drink 30 to 35oz one or two days a week. I’ve only been counting my liquid caffeine, so anything I get from chocolate, etc. is unrecorded. Also, the 20oz limit is a bit misleading because 8oz of coffee has about 135mg of caffeine while 12oz of soda only has about 40mg.

I definitely notice the difference between Starbucks coffee (about 440mg per 12oz), or an excessive amount (over 20oz) of caffeinated beverage now that I’ve cut back. Although I don’t feel like I’m sleeping significantly better, it is easier to fall asleep earlier or more quickly. I haven’t noticed many other benefits.