I’m not a coffee drinker, but I’ve been around enough coffee drinkers (especially living in Portland) to know that people are a lot happier after their morning cup of joe.  For many people coffee is a necessity for survival, but a new study out of the University of Bristol found that the energy boosting effects of coffee might just be in your head.

In this study subjects were given either a caffeine pill or a placebo and their alertness was measured through computer testing.  The results of the testing showed that caffeine did not improve the alertness of the subjects who took the caffeine pill.

The take home message from this study was that People who drink coffee experience an acute caffeine withdraw fatigue that makes them more tired and require coffee to return back to normal.

Study researcher Peter Rogers, from the University of Bristol’s department of experimental psychology, says in a news release: “Our study shows that we don’t gain an advantage from consuming caffeine — although we feel alerted by it, this is caffeine just bringing us back to normal. On the other hand, while caffeine can increase anxiety, tolerance means that for most caffeine consumers this effect is negligible.”

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