11 Coffee Myths

Here are 11 coffee myths you may have heard, spoiler, they aren’t true! See how many you knew to be false from the list below.

1. Your afternoon cup will cause insomnia

Caffeine is a stimulant. However, the caffeine you consume in your post-lunch cup of is processed through the liver at lightning speed and nearly all of it (roughly 75 percent) is flushed out of your body within four to seven hours. So, if you drink your second cup at 3 p.m., it’s completely gone by bedtime, unless you’re really lame.

2. You use boiling water on the grounds

If the temperature of your water goes above 200 degrees Fahrenheit, the water will start to extract some of the bitter oils from coffee grounds and may even scorch them. You can attribute the burnt taste of coffee to extra-hot water.

3. Coffee dehydrates you

Not true. Why exactly? Well, take a look at your cup of coffee. Notice the watery consistency? You can attribute this characteristic to all the goddamn water in a cup of coffee. The amount of H2O in a cup makes up for the dehydrating effects of caffeine.

4. A cup of coffee will sober you up

The amount of drinking myths rivals that of caffeine myths, but the short answer is: no. Caffeine can make an intoxicated person more alert, but a study by The American Psychological Association concluded that coffee does not reverse the negative cognitive impact of alcohol. It’s actually even worse for you, they report: “People who have consumed both alcohol and caffeine may feel awake and competent enough to handle potentially harmful situations, such as driving while intoxicated or placing themselves in dangerous social situations.”

5. Coffee helps you lose weight

Not exactly. The stimulating effects of caffeine can slightly—and I mean very slightly—increase your metabolism, but not enough to make a dent in your diet, especially in terms of long-term weight loss. Caffeine may reduce your desire to eat for a brief time, but there’s not enough evidence to show that long-term consumption aids weight loss.

6. Coffee stunts your growth

This myth has been around forever and is the sole reason why my mother thinks she hovers above five feet. However, the belief that coffee does stunt your growth is—forgive the aged expression—nothing more than an old wives’ tale. It’s unclear how this myth got started, but there’s no scientific evidence supporting it.

7. Caffeine is highly addictive

While there’s a little bit of truth to this one, it’s not as bad as Jessie Spano made it seem in Saved By The Bell. Caffeine stimulates the central nervous system, which causes a very slight dependence, however, the withdrawal effects last only a day or two and are a far cry from the withdrawal effects of, oh, heroin.

8. Coffee causes heart disease, cancer, osteoporosis, rabies

Calm down, everything is going to be fine. Consuming a moderate amount of (up to 300 milligrammes or three cups of coffee) caffeine on the daily isn’t going to hurt you. If you have high blood pressure, you could potentially experience a temporary rise in heart rate, but there is no link to caffeine and high cholesterol, cardiovascular disease, or rabies. Especially rabies. There’s even plenty of evidence from places like Harvard that coffee is good for you.

9. Pregnant women shouldn’t drink coffee

Caffeine won’t harm a fetus, however, it is advised that women should limit their caffeine intake to only 200 milligrams—about one cup of coffee. Caffeine can pass through the placenta and reach the baby, but there are no concrete studies saying it’s harmful. But better safe, right? So, just be careful.

10. The darker the roast, the stronger the coffee

Quite the opposite, actually! Roasting actually burns off the caffeine and gives you more of an acidic taste.

11. All coffee has the same amount of caffeine

Not all coffees are brewed the same and some cups have a hell of a lot more caffeine. For instance, McDonald’s has a measly 9.1 milligrammes per fluid ounce as compared to the goliath 20-milligram cup of Starbucks.

Written by Jeremy Glass.