Sometimes You Need Caffeine

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Sometimes, you need to stay awake. You're bone tired, exhausted even. But you've got a job interview, and you need to be clear-headed and enthusiastic; you need energy. Luckily, we live in a culture that values its instant energy, and there are a plethora of options for anyone who needs to rev it up for a day, or who just needs a little pick-me-up in the morning, before the day starts. The obvious contenders are coffees and teas, energy drinks, and “other” (think caffeine pills, caffeine infused gum, energy bars, etc). However, make no mistake, caffeine is an addictive substance. If you drink it every weekday and then skip the weekends, chances are, you're going to get a splitting headache and feel like crap on Saturday and Sunday. This is not to say that caffeine is heroine. But, anyone deciding to start drinking it once a day (or twice a day) should go into it with their eyes open.

Coffees and teas are probably the most socially acceptable (that is, the oldest) way of getting your caffeine. These two have obviously been around longer than any of the newer caffeine choices. They aren't necessarily safe, or better for you, and there has been some evidence that coffee is a carcinogen (there's also been evidence that one cup a day keep Alzheimer's at bay), but it's definitely an acquired taste. Black coffee is typically quite bitter, and if you're new to it, you may want to try some sugar and cream (although the sugar could lead to a jittery crash later, and the cream adds tons of calories). In the end, it's a judgment call. I should point out, for the sake of fairness, that coffee is indeed this author's caffeine of choice.