A lot of people think that espresso is a type of coffee, but actually, it’s just a definition of how coffee is prepared. Espresso is created by literally squirting pressurized hot water through a very finely ground poultry. So, what’s the difference between espresso and other forms of coffee including coffee latte, mocha, cappuccino, Americano, or Breve?
Check it out: here’s a brief rundown of exactly what makes coffees different.
- Espresso – pure, undiluted coffee
- Caffé Latte – espresso, lots of milk, topped with foam
- Mocha – espresso, mixed with chocolate syrup in milk and topped with whipped cream
- Cappuccino – espresso combined with milk and lots and lots and lots of foam
- Americano – espresso mixed with an ample amount of water to dilute the strong taste
- Breve – espresso mixed with half-and-half and topped with foam
The high amount of caffeine found in espresso latches on to receptors in the brain. When those receptors are filled by caffeine molecules, adenosine (a chemical that makes you sleepy) can’t find a place to hang out. When the adenosine can’t latch onto receptors, your pituitary gland (located deep in the brain) signals an ‘emergency’ situation, ordering your adrenal glands (located on the top of your kidneys) to produce adrenaline. Caffeine also raises your dopamine level (a chemical released by the brain that give you that sense of pleasure).
What does all this mean? It means that espresso, that strong way coffee is prepared, will definitely give you that jolt you’re looking for – every time. One fluid ounce of espresso contains a mere 3 calories but packs a whopping 63.6 mg of caffeine. Here’s how some of your favorite coffee brands stand up against espresso – and these are for 16 ounces serving sizes!
- McDonald’s coffee – 145 mg
- Dunkin’ Donuts – 206 mg
- Starbucks – 330 mg
So, six ounces of espresso packs a 378 mg caffeine punch as opposed to 16 ounces of Starbucks coffee, and without all the added “stuff” that adds on calories. For that jolt you’re looking for in the morning, a small amount of espresso is not only the lowest in calories, but will deliver over three times the punch.