Caffeine Zone 2: an iPhone app to manage your caffeine consumption
Author: Darren Date Posted:23 March 2012
I'm a caffeine fiend. If you're a customer of Bluepod Coffee, you probably are too. This is nothing to be ashamed of!
The idea that caffeine is something unhealthy is a myth. We've even written before about the health benefits of coffee. Using caffeine to optimise your concentration and general mental performance is more than okay, and in fact encouraged by health professionals. Not using caffeine is what's really unhealthy, if you ask me. Just thinking about decaf makes me feel queasy (although we do have a nice decaf pod here at Blue Pod).
What can be dangerous though is misusing caffeine. Too much coffee and you may get fidgety or have trouble concentrating. Drinking it too late and you could be up all night, which will leave you tired and needing even more caffeine the next day - an exhausting energy-sapping cycle. Using caffeine properly is about getting it right, which isn't always that easy.
Caffeine Zone 2 is a free iPhone/iOs app designed to get it right for you. Developed by scientists at Penn State University, you enter details about yourself and coffee consumption and it calculates optimal suggested consumption times and quantities. From The Age:
"The scientists said they used peer-reviewed studies to determine that caffeine drinkers are in an "optimal mental alertness zone" when they have between 200 and 400 milligrams of caffeine in their bloodstream. But going above this range can cause nausea and nervousness.
When they want to sleep, drinkers may discover that they have problems when they have more than 100 milligrams of caffeine in their bloodstream."
The app should be especially useful for those with irregular sleeping habits. The study was apparently supported by the US Office of Naval Research for this reason - the app will help sailors figure out how best to schedule caffeine into their everchanging schedules. If you indeed are a coffee-drinking sailor, give us a call and we'll try arrange getting one of our coffee machines onboard with you.
Personally I don't have an iPhone, so I may have to continue with the less-sleep more-coffee diet. For those who do have an iPhone or iPad, there is still hope! Click to view or download the app here.