by Ian Froeb
St. Louis ranks #4 among "Cities Most Addicted to Caffeine." One guess which city is #1. Yup. Seattle. Philly is #2, Phoenix #3, and L.A. and Boston are tied for #5. Chicago rates as the city least addicted to caffeine, followed by Tampa, San Francisco, Houston and the major metro area (?) of Riverside/San Bernadino.
St. Louis scores its best rating in "Most Cola Consumption": We're #3, behind only Houston and the Twin Cities. On the other hand, we're #1 in least coffee consumption. (Shockingly, Seattle drinks the most coffee.) What's more, we're tied for #5 in least energy drink consumption.
I shudder to think how much bubbly high-fructose corn syrup we're drinking to rank among the most caffeine-addicted.
Then again, I don't know how much faith to have in a survey that last year ranked New York City as least addicted to caffeine. I doubt there's a Starbucks on every corner because New Yorkers love the pastries.
By happy coincidence, I came across this survey shortly after a colleague passed along this new study by Durham University showing that high caffeine intake is linked to hallucinatory experiences:
'High caffeine users' - those who consumed more than the equivalent of seven cups of instant coffee a day - were three times more likely to have heard a person's voice when there was no one there compared with 'low caffeine users' who consumed less than the equivalent of one cup of instant coffee a day.So the next time you see someone wandering downtown, muttering to himself, glancing nervously over his shoulder, certain he's being followed even though the street behind him is empty, take pity: He's just another St. Louis caffeine addict.