Tag: latte

12 Reasons Why I Love Caffeine

Photo by Tadas Mikuckis

Photo by Tadas Mikuckis

Everyone has their favorites when it comes to certain food, drink and leisure-time pursuits. For some, a day just wouldn’t be right without that first cup of coffee. I can certainly relate. My day doesn’t begin until I have that first sip. It’s fair to say I love caffeine. Here are 12 reasons why.

Reason #1: I enjoy the experience. I wouldn’t say this about drinking V-8 juice, although I do like the flavor of that beverage. When it comes to my café latte, I have to say that it’s an experience that I truly enjoy. Yes, water is hydrating, but it’s boring, right? On the other hand, a well-crafted latte is a pure delight. For me, anyway.

Reason #2: It gets me going. I’m fortunate to have a home espresso machine. That’s enough to get me going first thing in the morning. For the times when I know it’s going to be hours before I can leave the house for any reason (errands, just to get out, whatever), it helps knowing there’s caffeine readily available when the machine heats up. Besides, when I first get up in the morning, my eyes aren’t fully open until I smell the beans being ground, hear the milk being steamed and the espresso flowing into my bowl-sized cup.

Caffeine is a source of instant energy. Some people say they get a hit from drinking coffee, as in brewed coffee. I’m not that type. While I used to drink many cups of coffee when I worked in a corporate office, that was long ago. And the coffee tasted really rank late in the day. It always seemed a waste to brew a fresh pot when no one else was going to drink it. I used to tell myself I needed the energy. My go-to energy source today – and for many years – is a hot latte. No matter what time of the day, it gives me instant energy.

Reason #4: It helps me think clearer. When I feel that instant energy boost, I’m sure I think more clearly. What was foggy becomes less confusing. I don’t tend to bump into the counter on the way to the sink or stumble over the newspaper in the driveway. Thinking things through beyond putting one foot in front of the other is a lot easier after a refreshing and eye-opening latte.

Reason #5: I can see better. I take certain vitamins to help my eyesight, among them lutein and bilberry, but I think one of the best vision boosts – especially early in the morning – is caffeine.

Reason #6: It doesn’t have many calories. I use non-fat (skimmed or skinny) milk, Splenda and just a touch of cocoa or splash of chocolate. Compared to many beverage items available with caffeine, my drink of choice is relatively free of calories. Can’t say that about the Frappuccino’s, which are delicious, but far too calorie-laden.

Reason #7: It’s available anywhere, anytime (almost). If you really want or need caffeine, it’s likely within reach in short order almost any time of the day or night. Granted, Starbucks and other coffee shop chains like Peet’s, Coffee, Bean & Tea Leaf and others do eventually close. But there’s still all-night diners for those who just have to have a cup of joe.

Reason #8: Caffeine speeds up my metabolism (see #2 and #3). A boost of wakefulness and increased energy are the direct result of increased metabolism. Knowing this makes me feel more confident that caffeine is one of the good things I’m doing for my body.

I feel better after drinking it. Call it instant gratification, but there’s something about drinking my café latte that makes me feel better. A lot of this is that I really enjoy lattes, but the rush I get from the caffeine probably has more to do with it.

Reason #10: It’s a social experience. I’ve never been to a coffee shop where there weren’t any customers. Well, maybe one time near closing and we were far from home, needed the jolt from the caffeine to drive another 150 miles. But, generally speaking, all the coffee shops we go to have lots of customers. Nobody seems in a bad mood, just waiting patiently in line for their favorite drink or food item. I enjoy that, especially since I know they’re passionate about their brand. They, like me, wouldn’t be here otherwise.

Reason #11: I can get out of the house/office. After working hard at the computer for most of the day, my favorite afternoon outing is to one of several nearby Starbucks coffee houses for a latte, hot or cold, possibly a pastry or to pick up beans for our home espresso machine. This is not only a reason to get out, it’s also a destination I go to either before, during or after running other necessary errands. Truthfully, I probably motivate myself to do what I need to with the knowledge that I’m going to stop for my coffee sometime during the trip.

Reason #12: My coffee habit has its rewards. As a longtime Starbucks gold member (for life, it seems), I earn free food or drink as a result of my regular patronage. Beyond the stars that translate into freebies, there are other special deals on coffee, mugs, occasional contests (haven’t won anything yet, but there’s still hope), and the knowledge that there’s always going to be a Starbucks somewhere nearby.

A downside to this is the amount of money I spend annually buying my lattes and such at Starbucks. Hey, at least it’s not booze. And it’s so much more socially accepted.

What about you? What are your reasons to love (or not) caffeine? I’d love to hear them below.

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