Caffeine craze

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Photo by Sashrika Shyam

A cup of coffee from Starbucks. Students have been drinking a lot more coffee during the pandemic, due to popular coffee shops being closed.

Sashrika Shyam, Bear Facts Contributor

From classic home-brewed Folgers to iced white chocolate mochas, there is no doubt that America loves coffee. Caffeine has proven to be a staple part of many adults and teenagers’ days. But the change in learning environments has allowed coffee to further steep itself into students’ routines.

The pandemic may have put the world to a stop, but it did keep the coffee grinding. A survey conducted by Nestlé shows that more people have become regular coffee drinkers during the pandemic. Students like Katie Zigic, freshman, make extra cups of coffee just to keep up with the structure of at-home learning.

“I do make extra coffee on days that I need extra energy when I stay up late doing homework,” Zigic said. “Procrastinating has been a big thing with e-school, so I definitely drink a lot more coffee so I can focus on school work.”

With the increase in coffee consumption, teenagers have started to develop preferences and different techniques to make their favorite caffeinated drink. From different machines to the famous Tik Tok Whipped Coffee, there have been many takes on this timeless drink.

However, people like Katy Norberg, French teacher,  don’t prefer all the bells and whistles. For Norberg, plain black coffee is her go-to.

“I used to put sugar and cream in [my coffee], and then I just felt like those things aren’t good for you, so I slowly weaned myself off of them,” Norberg said. “And then, sometimes we’ll buy a flavored coffee, and mix the regular coffee with the flavored one.”

Although Norberg loves her coffee plain, others prefer different coffee flavors and different coffee shops that make their favorites just how they like it. 

“[My favorite coffee shop is] Dunkin Donuts for sure,” Zigic said. “I like sweeter drinks like an iced vanilla latte because it’s not too bitter.”

Over time, people’s tastes have slowly evolved and changed. People have branched out from a typical coffee, to other caffeinated drinks.

“Every once in a while I get a chai tea latte from Starbucks,” Norberg said. “I feel like that’s a treat, and those are really good.”

There are different types of caffeinated drinks, such as tea and soda, which deliver the caffeine without also delivering the bitter tang of coffee. 

“[My favorite caffeinated drink is] probably green tea,” Lia Carroll, freshman, said. “I drink it almost every night, I like the taste.”

While people rely on caffeine to pick them up, there are some bad side effects. A study conducted by Harvard University shows that although it would take an excessive amount of cups, caffeine may be dangerous to some with heart disease.

As it is very easy for teens to get addicted to caffeine, especially during the pandemic, students like Zigic try to be aware of how much caffeine they drink each day to avoid these harmful effects.

“[When I feel like I’m drinking too much caffeine] I usually try to drink a lot of water,” Zigic said. “It’s supposed to keep you up and energized and hydrated too.”

The pandemic has caused coffee to become a vital part of students’ days. With coming years, even more Internet trends and busy lives, the caffeine craze of the twenty-first century is not going anywhere.