Week of:
May 17, 2019

Does caffeine affect athletic performance?

Alice,

I play on the varsity soccer team. My team's coach and captains have told us not to drink beverages with caffeine because they dehydrate you. Is this true? Are there any other harmful effects of caffeine on athletes?

What's the 411 on Four Loko?

Dear Alice,

Obviously drinks like Four Loko and Joose are dangerous for many reasons. Can you please explicate the science beyond my general understanding that "alcohol is a depressant and caffeine is a stimulant and thus, Four Loko is dangerous?” Exactly why on a chemical level is it a dangerous drink? Does it kill brain cells more consistently than traditional alcohol? Will it weaken my short term memory? Once I understand in greater detail, I'll probably be able to make the conscious decision to stop drinking "alcopop." Thank you very much.

Grapefruit juice and coffee

Hey Alice!

I've heard that drinking coffee and grapefruit juice at around the same time can extend the effects of caffeine. Is this true? I know that grapefruits can increase the bioavailability of some drugs... what about caffeine? Is this at all dangerous?

Thanks. You're awesome, Alice!

Can caffeine make social anxiety worse?

Dear Alice,

My partner suffers from mild social anxiety. Is it possible that this disorder can be aggravated by stimulants such as coffee? I have noticed that on days he drinks lots of coffee, the disorder seems worse, and he is more uncomfortable.

Please help! If we can eliminate possible aggravates of the disorder, he would be so much happier!

Thanks,

Caring Partner