As the saying goes, an apple a day keeps a doctor away, but can it keep you awake the whole day?
I heard a rumor claiming that apples contain as much caffeine as a cup of coffee and can give you the energy you need to power through your day.
As an apple lover and coffee lover (caffeine lover), I wanted to check if this claim is true.
Of course, I don't want to overload myself with caffeine, so I don't want to consume both of these things together if that's true, but I was still skeptical.
So, is there caffeine in an apple, and if so, how much caffeine does it have? Let’s find out!
Do Apples Contain Caffeine? (Myth Busted!)
While it’s true that eating an apple can give you energy just like how a cup of coffee can, it doesn’t contain any caffeine at all.
Caffeine is a naturally occurring substance and stimulant that can be found in leaves, seeds, and fruits of many plants, acting as an herbicide and insect repellent.
However, apples aren’t one of those plants that produce this substance.
The good news is that caffeine-sensitive people like me can continue to eat apples without worrying about their caffeine content.
This also means that even if you eat a lot of apples, you won't get the side effects you'll get from caffeine but will still feel energized throughout the day.
Do Apples Give You Energy?
Yes, apples can give you an energy boost, just like coffee. Apples and caffeine can both fuel your morning, but the difference between an apple vs coffee lies in what substance makes you feel energetic.
Unlike your morning cup, which relies on caffeine, apples provide energy through their natural sugar content.
Apart from its high sugar content, the natural sugar or fructose found in apples is bound in fiber. This makes the energy from its sugars last longer than many foods with sugar.
Fructose is also a simple sugar that can be digested quickly, which raises blood sugar pretty quickly, giving us that energetic feeling right away.
Although apples have more sugar than many kinds of foods, it's comparably healthier than sugary drinks like Coke, which I admittedly love.
So, even if it's a misconception that this fruit contains caffeine, eating apples can still give you an energy boost, just like your typical cup of coffee, thanks to its high sugar content.
I actually like eating an apple as a morning snack, and true enough, the sugars from this fruit can help give a boost of energy--more of a sugar rush than a caffeine rush.
Try it in between meals or if you feel like your blood sugar level is dropping, you'll know what I mean.
Are Apples Better Than Coffee For Energy?
Well, the answer depends on what kind of energy boost you need. I usually enjoy drinking coffee in the morning rather than eating an apple, so it’s usually my source of energy to jumpstart my day.
Since it does contain caffeine, it’s very much effective in giving you that morning boost.
However, a cup of coffee or two can have side effects, especially if you're sensitive to caffeine or consumed more than recommended.
Some of the most common side effects of caffeine include insomnia, dehydration, anxiety, headaches, and addiction or dependence on caffeine.
On top of that, you can also experience withdrawal symptoms if you suddenly stop consuming caffeine after drinking it for a long time.
On the other hand, apples can provide you with energy, but not as much as coffee or any other food and drink with more caffeine.
That’s why I prefer to eat apples as a pick-me-up snack or when I need energy but it’s already late in the day for caffeine. I don’t drink coffee after lunch as it tends to disrupt my sleep, so apples became my go-to energy fruit.
Although it doesn't give you as much energy as coffee does, an apple is a good source of antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals, such as vitamin C and vitamin E.
This makes it a healthy alternative to a coffee drink, especially if you’re trying to stay away from caffeine or it’s too late for you to drink coffee.
So how does an apple give you a boost of energy?
Well, it all boils down to the glycemic index, or how quickly an ingested glucose load finds its way into the bloodstream and how fast your body feels the effect of ingestion.
An apple has a glycemic index of 36 out of 100. It's not that high compared to other sweet drinks. This means you don't get as quickly energized as you will get from coffee.
One thing to note, apples DO contain carbohydrates. Compared to black coffee, an apple has more carbs. So, if you're trying to lose weight, it may not be a good idea to eat a lot of this fruit every day.
Does an apple keep you awake?
Thanks to its sugar component, an apple can keep you awake, just like coffee. However, it may not provide you with the same jolt as any caffeine would give.
I personally prefer coffee to keep me awake, as caffeine works really well for this. However, if you just need a tiny bit of energy boost at night, apple is an excellent alternative.
Or, if you're trying to avoid caffeine for some reason or you're a person who doesn't enjoy the taste of coffee, this fruit can be your new morning best friend.
Why do apples keep you awake more than coffee?
Well, that actually depends on your body and how it processes sugar and caffeine. Since I'm a bit sensitive to caffeine, I feel its effects more intensely than sugar.
This is why coffee keeps me more awake than apples.
However, for some, sugar has a more intense effect on their body. If this is your case, the sugar in apples provokes a similar response to coffee, keeping you awake and less sleepy.
However, compared to coffee, the vitamins and other substances in an apple are slowly released into the body. This results in making you feel more awake.
Nutrition Information Explained
So, what vitamins and minerals can you get in an apple? Here are them (based on one medium apple):
Common Questions About Caffeine In Apples
Is the sugar in apples safe?
Yes, the sugar found in apples is safe. When fructose is consumed in whole fruit, it doesn’t have a significant effect on blood sugar levels.
Can I eat an apple on an empty stomach?
Yes, you can. In fact, it’s the best way to consume an apple to get the most out of its health benefits.
Is it good to eat an apple every day?
Yes, one medium apple is healthy to eat every day.
If you're looking for a healthy alternative to a coffee drink in the morning or a replacement to your afternoon coffee (just like me!), an apple can wake you up and provide you with the energy you need.
However, this energy doesn't come from caffeine, as apples don't have this substance. Instead, the sugar content is responsible for this boost of energy.
Now that you know this, grab an apple if you're low on power! And benefit from the added vitamins and minerals this food contains!