Red Bull has undoubtedly done a lot to popularize energy drinks and shoot them into the spotlight. These beverages were already enjoying a lot of attention for some time, and drinks like Jolt Cola were already on the market before Red Bull arrived, even though some people assume Red Bull was actually the first company to do this. But Red Bull’s unique approach to marketing managed to quickly take the market by storm, and today, many use the name interchangeably with energy drinks in general.
As popular as energy drinks are, they are also a controversial topic. Red Bull’s caffeine content, combined with the high sugar amount per serving, can make it a dangerous drink if consumed too much. Of course, this applies to practically anything a person can overdo, but it’s important to understand the differences between Red Bull and ordinary coffee and know how both fit into your diet and daily regime.
Getting You Started for the Day
Red Bull’s caffeine content can make it a great way to start the day, especially if you’re constantly on the move and need something that doesn’t take a lot of time to prepare and can be consumed easily on the go. This is one of the main drawing factors behind Red Bull in the first place, and a major reason for many people to prefer the drink over coffee.
However, starting your day with so much sugar can lead to various long-term problems if you’re not careful – more on that below. On top of that, coffee has some other benefits for giving you that initial kick you want so much. The heat of the drink is a good example, as it adds to the comfortable feeling of waking up in the morning. Of course, not everyone drinks their coffee hot, so that might be a moot point for some. But still, Red Bull’s caffeine amount is not the only factor you should be considering here.
Immediate Rush of Energy vs Long-term Release
Something you might have noticed if you’ve been drinking energy drinks for a while, is that the rush they give you is a bit different from what you normally get from a cup of coffee. Coffee typically takes a while to kick in but provides you with a longer-lasting effect that can easily spill over all the way into your lunchtime. On the other hand, a can of Red Bull provides you with an almost immediate rush – you probably start feeling the effects halfway through the can already.
But the kick wears off as quickly as it arrives. And what’s worse, many people report that Red Bull gives them a bit of a “rubber band” effect, in the sense that they crash down a little bit once it wears off. People – including various scientists – have been arguing whether Red Bull actually works like that or if it’s mostly a placebo effect. But many seem to agree that the rush from a can of Red Bull is delivered in a completely different manner from a cup of coffee, regardless of how the coffee was prepared.
It’s Not Just About the Caffeine
It’s also important to remember that drinking Red Bull means you’re drinking much more than just caffeine. Taurine and sugar also play a major role in how you feel after a can of Red Bull. In fact, if you look at how much caffeine there is in a can of Red Bull, you might come to the surprising realization that it’s actually less than a cup of coffee using some of the most popular preparation methods. Coffee also comes with its own set of additional substances, especially in the form of various acids. But none of those have been shown to have such adverse effects on one’s health in the long term as sugar has.
And just how much caffeine does Red Bull have anyway? A small can contains about 77 mg, which is actually around three times less than an ordinary cup of espresso! But of course, even though you would probably easily drink one whole cup of espresso, you would hardly ever think of drinking three cans of Red Bull in one sitting.
So, even though the amount of caffeine per Red Bull can is not actually that significant, the drink affects your body in plenty of other ways. It’s important to understand that if you are trying to make an objective comparison between the two beverages, because basing your decisions solely on the amount of caffeine you’re ingesting can lead you to some very wrong conclusions. That’s not to say that measuring your caffeine intake is not important – quite the opposite. You should pay active attention to how much caffeine you’re taking in each day, and you should know how Red Bull’s caffeine mg values by heart if you’re an active consumer of the drink.
Customizing Your Coffee to Your Liking
A great aspect of coffee is that it’s so easy to customize. You don’t like too much caffeine? Just make it weaker. Taste is too strong? Add some sugar, milk, or something else to your liking. The list goes on – and while it’s certainly possible to customize Red Bull to some extent, it doesn’t really work the same way. Coffee is a very flexible drink and can easily be adapted to pretty much anybody’s taste. Some people don’t even feel the actual taste of coffee itself with their usual preparation methods and recipes, and that’s perfectly fine. You don’t have to follow anyone’s advice but your own when it comes to how the drink actually tastes.
Also, if you have been finding yourself drinking too much Red Bull recently and want to change that, you should start by checking how much caffeine a Red Bull can has. This will allow you to tweak your initial recipe in a way that will bring it closer to your original experience with Red Bull, which can make it easier to switch to coffee permanently.
Red Bull Sugarfree
Red Bull also offers a sugarfree option, which is a great choice for those who enjoy the taste of the drink but don’t want to subject their bodies to too much sugar and other harmful substances on a regular basis. It’s still a regular Red Bull energy drink with caffeine like their usual offers, but you’ll get less sugar and some other additives. Some people claim that they can’t tell the difference in taste at all, and if you’re in that category, you might want to look into the benefits of drinking sugarfree Red Bull instead of the regular kind.
The Benefit of Guaranteed Consistency
There are some points to make in favor of Red Bull though. One of the main advantages of the drink over regular coffee is that it’s guaranteed to be 100% consistent every time. It’s made in a factory using a completely automated process, so you’ll know the exact amount of caffeine, sugar, and other substances down to the last milligram. This is important if you’re trying to use caffeine as a regular part of your daily schedule, as you’ll know exactly what you can expect after each can you drink.
Coffee can also be made pretty consistently, but it’s much more difficult to do that, and you are also not guaranteed to get the exact same results every single time. Even if you measure everything precisely, use automated timers and other fancy options, there is still some risk of the final brew not coming out exactly as you expect it. This may or may not matter to you at all, but if you enjoy consistency in your daily routine, then Red Bull can definitely be a much better option than regular coffee, all things considered.
Camping and Other Situations Where You’re on the Go
Another great thing about Red Bull is that it’s perfect for living on the go. If you’re going camping, you can easily pack a few cans of Red Bull without having to worry about carrying an electric kettle or other coffee brewing equipment around with you. There are some simpler coffee preparation methods that don’t take up a lot of space in your luggage, but in general, if your main goal is to keep things as simple as possible, Red Bull is probably the best way to go. You can also mix both approaches to some extent and pack some coffee for those special moments. However, for getting up in the morning, Red Bull should do a fine job.
Experiment with both as much as you can. You’ll likely find benefits in both coffee and Red Bull, and plenty of people use both on a regular basis. There are some situations where Red Bull simply does a more efficient job. But if you don’t like the taste or the idea of stuffing your body with so much sugar, there are plenty of options to explore on the coffee side as well. The sooner you start checking them out, the better!