What Is Caffeine & What Foods Can I Find It In?

3D-model of Caffeine A Psychoactive Drug (src)

Caffeine is a central nervous system stimulant with low toxicity and low abuse potential.

The most common dietary source that everyone recognizes with caffeine is coffee.

But it is also common in teas, cocoa beverages, and many others.

Caffeine is a xanthine that is universally available, legal, and socially accepted as the world's most widely consumed psychoactive drug.

Table of Contents

Caffeine Is A Psychostimulant Drug

Caffeine is a psychostimulant drug that is rapidly eliminated from the blood, leading to a brief increase in blood pressure and heart rate (in about 10-20 minutes) and transient feelings of exhilaration.

Caffeine may also lead to significant side effects, including dry mouth, nausea, headache, and insomnia.

For some people, the effects may be more severe or less frequent than for others.

Uses Of Caffeine

Caffeine is found naturally in some foods, including coffee, tea, chocolate, cocoa, guarana, and the kola nut.

It is also found in many medications, such as various types of pain medications, cold and allergy medications, and antihistamines.

Caffeine is available over-the-counter in many different forms, including tablets, capsules, liquids, and powders.

In the old days

Caffeine has been used for more than 500 years as a recreational drug.

It was first used as an aphrodisiac, and later as a stimulant and an aid to weight loss.

Caffeine was also used as a purgative, a treatment for asthma, and as a general tonic and stimulant.

Caffeine And Sleep

The use of caffeine to stay awake and alert is a long-standing habit.

It is believed to reverse the performance and mood effects seen during sleep deprivation. (source )

Caffeine improves both physical and cognitive performance during periods of sleep deprivation.

Caffeine should not be considered as replacement for sleep. (source )

Caffeine In Coffee

Coffee is the most popular beverage after water and is consumed daily worldwide.

Which makes caffeine probably the most frequently consumed psychostimulant in the world. (source )

Caffeine is a universally available, legal, and socially accepted and used stimulant with low toxicity and low abuse potential. (source )

Caffeine In Common Foods

Caffeine has been used for ages and can be found in many common foods, drinks, and medications.

Caffeine exists in more than sixty plants.

The most common dietary source of caffeine is coffee.

But cocoa beverages, energy drinks, medications, and specialized sports foods and supplements can also contain different amounts of caffeine. (source )

Foods You Can Find Caffeine In

You find Caffeine mostly in beverage, and sweets products.

Examples of food sources include

Foods in our nutrition tool

You can find regularly updated top-ranked lists of foods for over 200+ nutrients in our nutrition tool.

If you are interested in what foods contain the most Caffeine, we recommend you visit our tool.

Here's our top-ranked list of foods that contain Caffeine.

Sara Niemelä

co-founder Care Omnia, Head Content Creator

Author Image of Sara Niemelä

Nutrition is my passion. I've spent thousands upon thousands of hours reading, analyzing, categorizing and comparing research studies.

I’m a wife and a mother of three. I enjoy the outdoors, cooking, and spending time with my family.