If you’re a coffee drinker, you already know that it’s much, much more than just a hot drink. For over half of all Americans who drink coffee it’s what helps them get their mornings started. But did you know that coffee also boosts productivity and can help prevent degenerative diseases? Or that coffee can be used to fuel cars? Here are nine fun facts about taking a coffee break.
Coffee Inspires Invention: The world’s first webcam was created in the early ’90s. Its sole purpose? To check if the coffee pot was full. Scientists at Cambridge University got tired of walking all the way to the coffee pot only to find it empty, so they set up a camera to track it
Good and Good For You: Coffee is packed with antioxidants, which have significant health benefits. They might even help prevent cancer, heart disease, diabetes, and Parkinson’s Disease. Drink up.
The Most Expensive Coffee: At up to $100 for a single cup of coffee, kopi luwak is known as the most expensive coffee in the world. What makes it special? The beans have been digested and excreted by an Indonesian Palm Civet. Yes, it’s cat poop coffee. And it’s reputed to be extremely delicious.
Mandatory Coffee Breaks: Ever wish you had to take a coffee break? You might if you work in Sweden. Many Swedish companies require their workers to have “fika,” a break for chatting, eating treats, and drinking coffee.
Coffee=Fuel: Coffee’s great for providing a kick of energy, and not just for people. The world record for longest journey driven by a coffee-powered car is 337km (from London to Manchester). Its top speed: 96km/h.
Grounds for Divorce: In 16th century Constantinople (modern-day Istanbul), it was legal for a woman to divorce her husband if he didn’t keep the coffee pot full.
Invention of the Coffee Break: The city of Stoughton, Wisconsin, takes credit for inventing the coffee break. The story goes that in the early 19th century, the local tobacco warehouse hired female Norwegian immigrants to help at harvest time. The women only agreed on the condition that they be given two daily breaks to go home, do chores and drink coffee. To this day, the city hosts an annual Coffee Break Festival with coffee tasting, food, and a fun run.
Coffee Boosts Productivity: A 2010 study found that caffeine helps you feel more alert, think clearly, make good decisions, focus, and solve complex problems. It also improves short-term memory and athletic ability. In short, coffee basically gives you superpowers.
A Coffee River: According to National Geographic, if every coffee bean produced in a year was made into coffee, the resulting java would have a volume of over 1.1 billion cubic metres. That’s equal to the entire flow of the Mississippi River over an hour and a half.
So, don’t skip your coffee break! It’s not wasted time; you’re protecting your health and preparing your brain to work better. And it might even inspire you to invent something great.