Advantages of Singlehood: Caffeine Edition

Just imagine for a moment how much caffeine a person in or pursuing a relationship has to consume. That person has to exchange free time in order to make commitments with someone else and vice versa. If our societal caffeine consumption is any indication, he or she, who likely was not getting enough rest to begin with when single with no desire for a relationship, is getting less sleep. We all should be fortunate that caffeine exists, whether we are single or otherwise. We must also realize that it can quickly cost a small fortune.

According to a study by the Food and Drug Administration’s Caffeine Intake by the U.S. Population, a given individual consumed 300 mgs of caffeine per day in 2008. For those who consumed coffee, this equated to 3.3 cups per day during the following year (6).

The average cost of a cup of coffee with no milk was $2.70 in September 2015, according to mobile payment company Square. Assuming coffee consumption remained consistent from 2009 to this time and no milk is ever added, this means a person currently spends $8.91 a day–before giving a 20 percent tip. Including the tip gives a total cost of $10.69 every day or $3,902.58 a year.

The cost will be slightly higher for essentially any adult because caffeine content rises with each age range until an individual turns 60 -years-old. Even then, consumption still is above average at least for coffee drinkers.

Daily Caffeine Intake from Coffee by Coffee Drinkers, 2009

I believe this upward trend is a result of four general factors: work itself, relationships, family life, and decreased overall energy as we age. A single person arguably has more control over all of these because without the need to support a partner and children, he or she does not have to work as much if he or she does not want to do so, which can lead to higher levels of energy in comparison to their coupled counterparts of similar ages. I also suspect divorcees, particularly those with children, consume more than their (voluntarily) single, never married counterparts because of stress and lack of sleep resulting from alimony or child support.

I’m not sure what this exactly translates to in terms of average savings in regards to caffeine consumption. Because there are many lifestyle factors to consider, I have to wonder if this reasonably can be quantified in a future study. Still, nearly $4,000 a year is a lot of money. I’d rather get some more rest and save some of that.

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