I’m a big fan of caffeine. So much so that I have a caffeine molecule tattooed on my left forearm. But it turns out that humans aren’t the only caffeine aficionados. Bees like caffeine, and spend more time gathering nectar from flowers which naturally produce caffeine.
Scientists at the University of Sussex said they thought the plants produce the caffeine in their nectar to fool bees into thinking it contains more sugar than it actually does. The insects will repeatedly visit those flowers, helping the plants maximize pollination.
Francis Ratnieks, a professor of apiculture at the university, said bees communicate by moving their abdomens a certain way — or, as he calls it, “dancing.” He said the caffeine increases that dancing.
Photo by Hey Paul Studios
Photo by paulscott56
I love my caffeine. So much so that I got a tattoo of the molecule on my arm. That said, people need to be aware of the potential risks.
A new study conducted by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) suggests couples who consume more than two caffeinated beverages daily in the weeks leading up to conception may have an increased risk of miscarriage. The research, conducted with authors at the Ohio State University, similarly found women who drank more than two daily caffeinated beverages during the first seven weeks of pregnancy saw an increased miscarriage risk. Previous studies have drawn similar links, but researchers hadn’t been able to single out caffeine as a particular culprit.
So while the benefit of caffeine is really great, it’s not all fun and games. Exercise caution – moderate your intake, and consider doing without during the pregnancy.