Sleep series: A helpful caffeine consumption calculator with download

Sleep series: A helpful caffeine consumption calculator with download
Photo by Hans Ripa / Unsplash

Caffeine is a stimulant substance that is found naturally in over 60 plants, including the coffee beans, tea leaves, kola nuts and cacao pods. It is thus found in coffee, tea, cocoa, chocolate, in some soft drinks and some drugs (e.g., some migraine and pain relief pills or allergy pills).

Caffeine can take up to three to ten hours to be metabolised in your body, with some people, depending on genetics and age, experiencing its effects for up to twelve hours.

Caffeine can prevent you from falling asleep and/or cause awakenings during the night. If you have trouble falling asleep it is advised to consume it moderately and to not consume any caffeine after noon.

If you would like to keep track whether your caffeine consumption affects your sleep, download and complete our helful caffeine consumption diary at the bottom of the page.

Things to note:

* Most coffee shops use double shot of espresso for cappuccino and latte. If you are not sure ask your barista how much they serve in theirs.

* Average values for caffeine per serving based on various sources. Keep in mind depending on the brand or extraction method there could be more or less caffeine than what is indicated here.

Overall caffeine consumption:

Add up all values from serving per day before noon and servings per day after noon

Overall caffeine consumption before noon:

Add up all values from serving per day before noon.

Overall caffeine consumption after noon:

Add up all values from serving per day after noon.

If overall caffeine consumption is over 200:

Your overall daily caffeine consumption is over 200mg. Research suggest that you should limit morning intake of caffeine to 200mg maximum. If you have sleep problems such as difficulty falling asleep and other insomnia related issues you should avoid having any caffeine after noon.

Foot note: In 2020 I worked alongside three academics who helped build a CBTI sleep therapy app for me. I decided against starting the project as I felt the medium at the time (mobile phone apps) was not immersive enough to do the excellent work justice (but watch this space).

The three were Achilleas Pavlou who is currently a Lecturer in Psychology and Clinical Communication Skills at the University of Nicosia Medical School. Tania Karina Garcia Vite BSc Psychology, MsC Sleep Disorders. Dr Nicholas Cooper Senior Lecturer Department of Psychology University of Essex.

The sleep series is thus based on that collaboration...

Check our another blog on sleep? Try Deep Breathing part 1