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Coffee & Productivity

August 5, 2016 -

Coffee is so much more than just a vehicle to deliver caffeine, but we all have those days that we turn to coffee to give us a boost of productivity. At MistoBox, we spend a lot of time talking about the story of a coffee, evaluating it from a flavor/quality perspective, and finding the best ways to enjoy it, but I wanted to explore actual effects that coffee has on us. I wanted to know the science behind it and find ways that I could consume coffee in order to maximize for productivity.

Coffee & Productivity in the US

Coffee has been a staple in the U.S. workplace since the mid 1900s. Even before the science entirely was totally understood, the benefits workers got a cup of coffee were obvious. Fast forward to the present, studies have shown that the caffeine found in coffee has three main ways that affect your productivity: it increases your alertness, it makes you more sociable, and it can actually help to improve your memory. It’s no surprise that caffeine has become the world’s most popular psychoactive drug.

The Science

But how does the caffeine in coffee actually work in our body? It turns out your body breaks down the caffeine molecule into 3 different molecules (theobromine, paraxanthine, and theophylline) that have unique properties to help increase flow of oxygen and nutrients to the brain, produce heightened brain activity, and up your ability to concentrate. If you like to nerd out on science like me, you’ll find this video interesting.

Maximize productivity from coffee

I’ve found that coffee doesn’t always increase my productivity. Sometimes it’s more helpful than other times, so I set out to find strategies to maximize the amount of productivity you can get from a cup of coffee. While these tips aren’t how I would typically enjoy a cup of coffee, I found that they were effective when I needed to rely on coffee for a productivity boost.

Eat food first – If you drink coffee on a empty stomach, your body starts digesting it as if it was food. You’ll get a boost of energy, but you need food in order for your body to sustain that energy and not crash.
Wait until you need it – Instead of drinking a cup right when you wake up, wait to drink it right before you’re ready to work. This will maximize the effects when you need to be most productive.
Drink it slowly – Drinking coffee over a longer period of time releases the caffeine more steadily, which will help to sustain the effects of the caffeine. The downside is that you’ll be drinking cold coffee, but the upside you’ll be able to taste how the flavor profiles change as the coffee cools.
Wait for your next cup – I have a habit of refilling my cup as soon as it is empty, but the better strategy is to wait until you feel like you need a little productivity boost, which for me is right after lunch.
Don’t overdo it – Drinking too much coffee can leave you with the jitters or an upset stomach, which can end up stalling your productivity.

While there is so much more to a coffee’s story today, it’s still interesting to explore the effects that made coffee so popular in the first place. Tweet @mistoboxcoffee, and let us know if you have any other tips for maximizing your productivity when drinking coffee.

 


Sam Meis

Sam is a MistoBox co-founder. She loves traveling, business, minimalism, mindfulness, and (of course) coffee. When she's not embarking on adventures around the world, she calls San Francisco home.

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