back to article Drinking coffee offers no real benefit, say eggheads

Deluded academics in the UK and Germany have produced "research" purporting to show that coffee drinkers receive no tangible benefit from their morning cup of beautiful, life-giving beany caffeine goodness. The foolishness was presided over by Peter Rogers of Bristol Uni's experimental psycho department. He and his allied …


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  1. EddieD

    Who bloody cares?

    Fresh ground coffee tastes nice. Decaff coffee(and tea) tastes wrong. Drinking something that tastes nice in the morning is better than drinking something that tastes wrong, and puts me in a better mood. If they can make a decaff that tastes as good as Blue Mountain, or Kona, or even Lavazza, I'll give it a whirl. Until that day my Bialetti will be serving unnecessary and ineffective stimulants.

    Now, as for "alchohol-free beer" let me tell you.....

    1. Jim Coleman

      Blue Mountain?

      Blue Mountain? Seriously? Isn't that......instant?

      Sorry but anyone who drinks instant and claims any kind of authority on "taste" deserves to be slapped with a wet herring.

      Any coffee lover knows the only way to drink coffee is to buy beans, keep 'em in the freezer, grind them on demand and use a proper pressurized espresso maker. Anything less is bleurgh. Instant doesn't even qualify to be called "coffee".

      I wonder if you eat instant mash and have Angel Delight for dessert?

      1. Shinobi87

        are you joking

        Angel Delight is quality

      2. IanPotter

        Re: Blue Mountain

        "Blue Mountain? Seriously? Isn't that......instant?"

        I suspect he means Jamaican Blue Mountain beans which retail at about £10 per 100g. Massively overpriced if you ask me but each to their own.

        1. Will Leamon

          Really dude?

          Blue Mountain here I believe is referring to Jamaican Blue Mountain Coffee which comes in bean form and is considered some of the finest in the world by a lot of people. Personally I think it's the scarcity equals value thing but I digress.

          FROZEN BEANS. GTFO with that. Cool, dry, drak and preferably vacuum sealed.

          Pressurized? God help you if that means a steam driven machine! Trust me you will burn in hell (much like your coffee) if that's what you recommend.

        2. Pete 2 Silver badge

          But is it real?

          The price of Blue Mountain makes it the most faked coffee in the world. I've read estimates that up to three quarters of the stuff purporting to be BM is not. But since it's so scarce and so few people have drunk the real thing, most people would not be in a position to tell the difference.

          Still, at least it hasn't been crapped out by cats

          1. Will Leamon

            Blue Mountain Fakery

            Is mostly the result of blends. Say 1 Tablespoon of the good stuff mixed with 1 lb of crap and you have Blue Mountain Delicious Blend.

          2. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            nothing wrong with

            coffee picked out of cat crap, it's not half bad, if overpriced.

            plus you get the feeling of smug satisfaction in knowing that someone has had to root around in crap to provide you with your morning drink

      3. Dom 1

        Blue Mountain

        Is actually a coffee from Jamaica. It is incredibly expensive, costing up to (and over) £100 per kilo.

        It is also regarded as one (if not the) best coffees in the world. You should try some, before getting out the wet herring!

      4. vic 4

        @Jim - Blue Mountain

        Blue Mountain coffee is coffee that is grown in the blue mountains in Jamaica. I don't doubt there is an instant coffee with that in the name but you can also buy beans anywhere. BTW, it is considered by many to be the bets coffee and is certainly one of the most expensive.

      5. technome

        Blue Mountain? Instant?...


        You are obviously no coffee lover!

      6. John H Woods Silver badge

        blue != red

        ... but it wasn't me who downvoted you

    2. TeeCee Gold badge


      Not bothered about coffee, never have been. Decent tea however.....

      I do drink coffee, loads of it. The only reason for this is that most offices will provide something that tastes fairly coffee-like and while I can tell the difference between decent coffee and crap, I'm not too bothered as I don't actually like it anyway.

      Office tea on the other hand tastes like someone's boiled up the contents of the nearest hoover bag and pissed in the end result to add colour.

    3. EddieD

      I did mean the Jamaican stuff

      I'll agree it's massively overpriced, but I think that applies to most luxury brands - whether it's coffee, whisky, cars, whatever.

      I just like it - probably there's a small section of my brain that says "after shelling out that much, you're going to like it, whether you like it or not!"

      All the best.

  2. Anonymous Coward


    Scorn and derision for actual science? That's a bit lame, Reg'. Your reporting is also a bit patchy, as I believe that the research shows that it does have benefits: But only for those who use it when they need it, and aren't already addicted and using it constantly.

    I'm a coffee addict, and I'm certainly not more awake and alert than my non-addicted co-workers and friends. And when deprived of coffee, I'm a darn sight worse: My weekends devolve into dozing and massive withdrawal headaches if I forget to have three or four cups before midday.

    It's a dependency. It doesn't help me out-perform everyone else; it just helps dredge my performance up to normal levels again. Which is exactly what this and other studies have shown.

    1. Sarah Bee (Written by Reg staff)

      Re: Hmm.

      Lewis doesn't have a coffee problem. He can quit whenever he feels like it.

    2. Charlie Clark Silver badge

      Fuck me but you're dull

      Lewis' article is not derisive simply nicely ironic. But you obviously don't appreciate the difference.

      @Lewis lovely stuff. But what's that big word in the article? Is it another attempt by so-called scientists to bamboozle us with jargon while they are lying through their climate-changing and presumably pearly white teeth?

      1. frank ly Silver badge

        @Charlie Clark

        I'm not sure if the article is in fact ironic. It is certainly comic, as Lewis often is. In this article he seems to employ classical techniques of irony but for some reason, it doesn't strike me as being 'ironic'. I'll get another cafetiere brewed mug of Cost-Rican down my throat and try reading it again.

        1. Sarah Bee (Written by Reg staff)

          Re: @Charlie Clark

          You lot are all so sharp.

          1. Ed Blackshaw Silver badge


            It's the effects of the caffeine dont-you-know?

          2. frank ly Silver badge

            Not sharp enough...

            Yes, but I mis-spelled 'Costa-Rican', in a post with a pedant icon. Now that IS ironic.

            1. Charlie Clark Silver badge


              Would that be "iconically ironic"?

              God, I'm so sharp I'd cut myself if I could get out of this straitjacket! That would make a good icon for funny puckers like me!

            2. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: Not sharp enough...

              Ironic, maybe. But is it iconic?

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Paris Hilton

                Charlie: What would make a good icon for...

                puny fuckers?

                Time for my second, and last, cup of the day. While I love coffee, really love the stuff, I get all shouty if I drink more than two cups. Sad but true.

                1. Naughtyhorse
                  Thumb Up

                  2 cups.. shouty??

                  I never noticed the caffene lift, and reckoned it was all bollocks, being a 20 cup a day man since i was knee high to a plectrum.

                  then I got me one of them there esspresso machines...

                  Still kepy my old 'fat bastard' size mug.

                  drining 4 or 5 pints or esspresso a day for a week dont half impinge on your perception of the world!

                  also makes ones teeth itch

        2. Charlie Clark Silver badge
          Paris Hilton

          Fired up

          Certainly a good idea to dose the neurons with stimulants before approaching keyboard.

          The irony is in the mock outrage on the scientific value of the report which so angered our HYS friend. It's a sort of post-modern, Ben Eltonish irony but, as it still puts interpretation at a distance to experience, it is still irony. The more traditional irony is the lampooning of the science rather than the questionable value of this supposedly new investigation into established fact - the body develops tolerance to stimulants.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Lol @ life-giving beany caffeine goodness

    Much as I hate pointless studies I actually agree with this one. You only get any benefit from caffeine if you drink it very rarely. Try not consuming caffeine for a few weeks to completely detox from it and then have a nice triple espresso, it leaves you bouncing off the walls. Just like a first cigarette leaves you dizzy and feeling queasy but your body soon gets used to it.

    Not that it'll stop me from drinking coffee.....

  4. Bassey

    Actually rings true

    A colleague is a real caffeine junky - drinks red bull* and Irn Bru* like it's going out of fashion. One Saturday, after a heavy Friday night, he got through four cans of Red Bull in just a couple of hours and scared the shit out of himself. The shakes carried on most of the day.

    So, he cut it out. Within three or four days he said he genuinely felt fantastic - even in the mornings. And he is most definitely NOT a morning person!

    Of course, as I look across now, he's got a can of Red Bull on the go.

    * Other caffeine based drinks are available.

  5. serviceWithASmile

    this article is why

    i love the register

    keep up the good work :D

    and damn those truth-deniers

    1. paulf Silver badge

      The title is required, and must contain letters and/or digits.

      Agreed - excellent article. I noticed only a small touch of editorial bias.

      "their morning cup of beautiful, life-giving beany caffeine goodness."


      "The foolishness was presided over by Peter Rogers of Bristol Uni's experimental psycho department. He and his allied truth-deniers wrote:"

      Psycho dept? Superb!!

      Off for my next cup of beany goodness, although I might cook them, then grind them into powder first before infusing with boiling water. Actually - if they're a powder form, cut out the middle man, ahem <sniff> <sniff>?

    2. lpopman

      titular doohickey

      It sounds like your colleague was getting off on that other active ingredient in Red Bull, namely Taurine. Studies have shown that it can have psychoactive effects see for a brief mention.

      as a side note, I once drank a whole case of 24 Red Bull in the space of a couple of hours, and was tripping my box off.

  6. Rob

    Which one is a Placebo

    According to this research then coffee is an extremely good placebo that appears to have an effect even if it is psychosomatic.

    1. HighlightAll

      I prefer to think of it

      as charismatic like Real Ale. People look cooler drinking coffee than they do snorting white stuff.

      1. Rob

        I agree...

        ... Not quite as many flavours as the Real Ale world though.

        I couldn't drink as much Ale as I do coffee in the morning and still be conscious either.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Big Brother

    Stop this dangerous stuff

    So they're saying that the desire to drink coffee is merely a self sustaining reaction to the lack of coffee. Sounds like a classic addiction scenario.

    If the government get to hear of this, coffee will be banned as a Class A drug before you know it.

    1. Disco-Legend-Zeke
      IT Angle


      ...when coffee was first introduced to Europe there were many attempts to ban it. Much of the government's fear of coffee was more about the (subservisive) conversations in the coffee houses than the drug itself.

      Today, my coffee connection ships me 2 pounds every month, still hot from the roaster when packed.

      Tip: Always buy whole beans and grind just before brewing.

      Without coffee, there would BE no IT. (we need a coffee icon)

    2. lglethal Silver badge
      Thumb Down

      No Coffee is safe...

      Coffee is safe - its already a taxed drug. Its only untaxed drugs which are bad,/naughty/wont someone think of the children types of evil...

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I call bollocks.

    Coffee emits a smell that makes me forget how painful it is being awake.

  9. Matt Newton

    What a pointless piece of research

    I am addicted to caffine. I am well aware that I have a high tollerance to it and that I don't "out perform" others. No shit. Caffine is an addictive substance.

    I'm on cup number 4 already today. It's 11am and I'm tired :D

  10. Chris Harden


    Burn Them!

  11. Reading Your E-mail

    Two things....

    1) So those people that get tachycardia from drinking too much caffeine are imagining things, as are heart monitors attached to said persons?!?!

    2) I thought academia was facing budget cuts, surely this sort of time wasting would be a great one for the chop, as who really needs a Dept of pointless research anyway?

  12. nichomach

    Decaf chugging...

    ...muesli-munching yoghurt-knitting freaks.

  13. lee stone

    legalise ALL drugs

    so caffeine is addictive like most other drugs, then? wow - who'd have known?

    yet another argument for legalising and taxing them ALL ....

  14. Stanislav

    ... and therein lies the problem

    "The team asked 379 adults ... to give up caffeine for 16 hours"

    ... which naturally gave the non-bean-lievers an advantage right from the start.

    We who are wise in the ways of espresso are well acquainted with its life-enhancing properties. However, we also accept that they come at a price: the constant need for a refill. Laying off for 16 hours is just not playing fair.

  15. breakfast


    That's the last time I buy the new-romantic-cyclist-farmer-ecologist journal.

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Coffee is mud

    and it's high time it was outlawed, especially amongst the schoolchildren I see clutching a Starbucks cup in the morning

  17. Bunglebear

    Sweeeeeet caffeine

    Reading Your Email, the stimulant effects (and its effect on heart rate) of coffee and caffeine were not disputed, its whether this increases "alertness", whatever that means.

    As far as I'm concerned, decaffeinated coffee is like non-adhesive glue. Bean me!

    1. archengel46

      Did you mean...

      Bean me Up, Coffee! (Rhymes with Scotty you see?)

      I think alcohol picks me up further than coffee does.

  18. Tom 7 Silver badge

    Coffee Fanbois?

    Never could understand the obsession with drinking burned baked beans - I've been praised on the outstanding quality of a drink I made from just that and passed off as Blue Mountain!

    iCoffee - all marketing and customer loyalty?

  19. Anonymous Coward


    "...the revivifying morning cup offers no more than a return to normal performance..."

    So drinking coffee does help. I'd rather perform normally than not.


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