midterms made easy, with coffee [podcast]


For most of us college students, the stress of midterms make us rely a little more on coffee. While regular coffee drinkers — like me — live life by the cappuccino, others are left wondering what a cup of joe is really all about. And, does it actually help you study? Dietitian JoAnn Daehler-Miller says, yes; it can.

“Coffee is a stimulant; caffeine is a stimulant. So, it does help with alertness. We also find that [it] improves concentration and focus for many people, so it actually can be an effective boost.”

Coffee shops can be intimidating for non-regulars, and it’s important to know the basics before ordering. Coffee in its most basic form is simply called brewed coffee — the kind of coffee that’s generally made from home.

Cafés, on the other hand, usually feature a few different methods. Most popularly, the espresso [method], which brews coffee by applying pressure. A small drink typically comes with one shot of espresso, but that doesn’t mean you can’t add more.

Max Johnson, a local Iowa City barista, tells me about the most ambitious drink order he’s ever heard.

“A friend of mine did try and make a nine shot cappuccino, which was… that was the most ambitious drink I’ve ever seen.”

But nine shots of espresso might do more harm than help. JoAnn mentioned that while coffee has its benefits, too much of it can hinder your sleep.

“Usually beyond about four cups of coffee, even if it’s far in advance of bedtime, it will impact your sleep. Maybe not the length of time that you sleep or ability to fall asleep, but it might interfere with the quality of sleep.”


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