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Caffeine and Candidates

:: Thank you to everyone who wrote or commented about my increased heart rate. Subsequent to having an ECG on Thursday and visiting the doctor, I stopped drinking my Starbucks French Roast coffee. Within 24 hours, my heartbeat was down to the mid-80s. I just checked it again, and the reading was 76 bpm, which for me is remarkable.

Shannon sent a link to an article about high caffeine levels in coffee.

The biggest bang for your buck, with more than double the levels of caffeine compared to the lowest levels, were found in coffee from Starbucks and Second Cup.

Of course, at Starbucks, rarely do they serve French Roast over the counter – you have to buy it and make it yourself, which is what I do with it at work. The article does provide responses from the coffee companies, including Starbucks:

We emphasize that any absolute numbers reported on caffeine levels in Starbucks coffee do not reflect what a customer would receive in every cup of Starbucks coffee. There are many variables that contribute to caffeine content from cup to cup.

Regarding Starbucks regular drip coffees, customers can expect an average of 160 milligrams of caffeine per eight ounces.

The article notes that “Health Canada recommends no more than 400 milligrams of caffeine a day.” That said, if the data from Starbucks are correct, even drinking 1-1.5 cups of regular drip French Roast shouldn’t affect my heart rate. Or should it? In this case, it appears that a particular brand of coffee had an effect on me. On the plus side, the ECG revealed that my heart is in great shape, with no abnormal rhythms of any kind.

:: It is a long weekend in Canada, Victoria Day, and it’s been somewhat lazy. In no particular order, so far today I worked out, weeded a section of a filing cabinet (and fed my paper shredder a lot of paper!), cleaned up stuff in the background of my web site, cut the grass in the front and back yards, watered the small patches of dirt in which plant life can be found, loaned a copy of Time Out New York to someone who is leaving for NYC on Wednesday. I still want to clean one of my bathrooms today if I can find the energy, and add some decorative rock to the base of my little oak tree in my front yard. I also want to put up my backyard canopy, with the help of a neighbour. And go for coffee and read a bit. I am feeling lazy and overwhelmed with life – no different from any other day.

:: A federal election has been called in Canada for June 28, which also happens to be my birthday. At this point in my life, I find most politicians to be without many ethics or principles, if any. In my front yard is a sign supporting the local Liberal candidate. I doubt he’ll win, but I would never vote for the right wing. This time around, I don’t know if I will vote at all.

:: Two weeks from now, I’ll be in Nashville. Three weeks after I return, it’s off to Winnipeg and Newfoundland and then back to Winnipeg. A few weeks later, it’s September. Summer moves by too quickly. It’s isn’t fair.

:: The guy who came to my door on May 19, asking for $5 to refill his daugher’s inhaler, never returned the $5.

6 Responses to “Caffeine and Candidates”

  1. Caffeine Sucks More Says:

    Comments about the average acceptable amount of caffeine don’t necessarily apply to specific individuals. Many people develop an intolerance to caffeine as they get older. The only way to find out how caffeine affects you is to stop *any* food products containing caffeine for several weeks. Since caffeine in trace amounts is often used as a flavor enhancer, you may be surprised how many products do contain caffeine!

    As for the $5 at the door, if someone doesn’t have ID, then it’s unlikely any pharmacy will sell them a prescription inhaler anyway.

  2. Murph Says:

    Little bits of caffeine will put me right over the edge, which as you probably recall is the reason I won’t drink coffee (well, I never developed a taste for it, but that came after).

    The papers here are predicting that the Conservatives will win every BC seat. This place is whackier than Alberta now.

    And we’ll be in Edmonton in early July. You around then?


  3. Keith Says:

    Some requests for charity are real; many are not. Our chuch is in the Mill Creek area, and receives a lot of requests, mostly for money because someone claims to be hungry. There is a family restaurant one block away and we have arranged coupons. The church hands out meal coupons, and when they get redeemed, we pay the restaurant. Usually, they don’t get redeemed.

    Medical textbooks usually claim that caffeine is eliminated from the body in 6 to 8 hours. This is not true for some people. If I drink one can of Coca-Cola (or one cup of coffee) in morning, then I will be unable to sleep until 3 or 4 AM the *next* morning. Doing this on a regular basis would require even more caffeine in the mornings to “get me going”. After a few weeks of this, my body is obviously exhausted and nothing can get me moving.

    This intolerance to caffeine is not unusual, and occurs to many people in various degrees. Usually we don’t notice that it is affecting us, because the intolerance grows gradually with age. Only when you stop the caffeine for a while (as a test of several weeks or months) will you know how much caffeine is affecting you.

    I’m not trying to scare you, Randy, but I am suggesting that this is something you should consider. Breaking my caffeine addiction was difficult (to put it mildly). I still indulge now and then, knowing that the consequences are always the same.

  4. jenB Says:

    i will also vote liberal, part of my anything-but-rahim vote.

    and don’t complain about summer! you are travelling and having fun! it could be worse. 🙂

    love jen

  5. steve 40 Says:

    Recently I would get up in the morning and have trouble breathing if I moved to fast. It was over if I burped, and then everything was back to normal. I thought I would stop coffee (I was drinking 5 cups a day, the last one about 8:00 pm) to see if that was the trouble. All the symptoms went away. I tried going back to one cup a day in the morning after a month of no coffee and I would get paranoid in the evening and and couldn’t sleep. I noticed that my heart rate was also elevated when I couldn’t sleep, I guess as I age I can get away with less. Harder for me as I gave up drinking almost 2 years ago, and thought I could drink coffee at least. Sigh.

  6. Mcgill Says:

    If you ask me, you should take Green tea instead. It’s such a remarkable gift from God almighty. Very balanced in its ingredients. I too am a 60 year old guy having cardiovescular sufferings. But I just feel easy with a cup of green tea.

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