Caffeine vs. Human


There are many different methods to brewing coffee and there are some common misconceptions about caffeine content in each beverage that I’d like to clear up.

One thing I hear more often than not, is that folks think espresso has more caffeine than drip coffee. Ounce for ounce, yes, but beverage for beverage, no. On most occasions in the U.S. of A, when someone is drinking espresso it is watered down with 12+ ounces of milk. Therefore your latté or cappuccino has much less caffeine than if you had a drip coffee of the same size. Actually somewhere around half the amount.

After doing some research, relative to my weight and tolerance, I found out exactly how much coffee could kill me. I can drink 70 (or so) cups of drip coffee before keeling over. But I would have to jump well into the triple digits, drinking 133 cups of espresso before I would suffer a ‘Death by Caffeine’. Now to make things a bit more interesting and to really encapsulate the essence and art of extraction, some rough math shows that I would have to eat nearly 1,500 coffee beans before croaking. Interesting.

Now of course different roasts, beans, brewing methods and tolerance levels will cause this to differ from person to person and coffee to coffee. And to be honest I have yet know anybody that has suffered a death by caffeine. Though there are a couple of documented cases, they are much less common than what popular opinion conveys. Studies show that Tylenol kills more people per year than caffeine. So next time you think you’ve had enough, have another! It probably won’t kill you.

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