5 fascinating facts about caffeine (that you might not know)

5 fascinating facts about caffeine (that you might not know)
Written by
Teodora Tepavicharova
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In acknowledgment of Caffeine Awareness Month, we wanted to share 5 fascinating facts about caffeine with you:

1. The origins of caffeine & coffee can be traced back to the 15th Century

The earliest evidence of coffee use is from 15th century Africa. Coffee use spread to Europe in the 17th Century, while the first Tchibo coffee shop opened in 1955! Coffee had long been recognised as a stimulant, yet it was only 225 years ago that the German chemist Friedlieb Ferdinand Runge [1] isolated the active chemical component in coffee beans that we now know as caffeine.

2. Decaffeinated coffee still contains caffeine!

A common misconception is that decaffeinated coffee is caffeine-free. Decaffeinated coffee contains 2-12mg [2] of caffeine while a regular cup of coffee contains 70-140 mg of caffeine [3]. The decaffeination process can remove approx. 97% of the caffeine, but the exact percentage depends upon several factors including the type of bean, the roasting process and the decaffeination process used.

3. Caffeine is a natural pesticide

The two main species of coffee plant are Arabica and Robusta. The Robusta bean contains 25-50% more caffeine on average than Arabica. Caffeine acts as a natural pesticide, and it’s this higher caffeine content that helps make the Robusta coffee plant less susceptible to pests, disease and makes it easier to cultivate than Arabica. [4]

4. In addition to drinks, you can find caffeine in foods such as chocolate, energy bars, cereals and ice cream

Chocolate is made from the seeds of the cacao tree. The higher the cacao content, the greater the percentage of caffeine. Dark chocolate has a higher cacao content so contains more caffeine than milk chocolate. Similarly, any product containing “real” chocolate, will also contain caffeine, including chocolate bars, ice cream and breakfast cereals.

5. Most teas contain caffeine, but not all!

Around 5-64 mg of caffeine [5] can be found in most teas. For those looking to enjoy a calmer (less stimulating cup), there are lots of herbal and fruit caffeine-free teas including Chamomile, Honey & Vanilla Infusion, Peppermint, Summer Berry, Lemongrass & Ginger, etc. Discover our caffeine-free collection here.


 Shop our coffee selection here.

 

References:

  1. https://io9.gizmodo.com/how-the-man-who-wrote-faust-helped-discover-caffeine-1731471406
  2. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/how-much-caffeine-in-coffee
  3. https://www.sleep.org/articles/foods-with-caffeine/
  4. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Caffeine
  5. http://www.unlockfood.ca/en/Articles/Caffeine/Facts-on-Caffeine.aspx