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Although it is sometimes claimed that consuming caffeine at

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Although it is sometimes claimed that consuming caffeine at [#permalink] New post 05 Jul 2012, 20:52
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Although it is sometimes claimed that consuming caffeine at high levels does not cause insomnia, statistical
evidence shows that it does. Study after study has found that people with high levels of caffeine consumption
from beverages such as coffee, tea, and soft drinks are far more likely to suffer from insomnia than people who
consume little or no caffeine.


Which of the following is an assumption on which the argument depends?


A. Consumption of caffeine from sources other than coffee, tea, and soft drinks is unlikely to cause insomnia.

B. Caffeine consumption is the only commonly occurring cause of insomnia.

C. People suffering from insomnia do not typically respond to their lack of sleep by consuming much more caffeine

than they would if they did not suffer from insomnia.

D. The only evidence available to show whether caffeine causes insomnia is statistical evidence showing correlations

between caffeine consumption and insomnia.

E. Anyone who regularly consumes caffeine in more than moderate quantities will suffer from insomnia.
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Re: coffee insomnia problem [#permalink] New post 05 Jul 2012, 22:05
D. The only evidence available to show whether caffeine causes insomnia is statistical evidence showing correlations

between caffeine consumption and insomnia.

what if caffeine is not the only cause for insomnia ? so,

IMO (D)
OA please?
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Re: coffee insomnia problem [#permalink] New post 05 Jul 2012, 22:16
My guess is C. If C was false that would mean that many insomniacs drink a lot of coffee i.e insomnia possibly leads to coffee drinking and not coffee drinking possibly leads to insomnia. This explains the data in the stats as well as demonstrates that the author misinterpreted the data.

What's the OA?
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Re: coffee insomnia problem [#permalink] New post 05 Jul 2012, 23:12
C for me as well.

If C is negated:
People suffering from insomnia do typically respond to their lack of sleep by consuming much more caffeine than they would if they did not suffer from insomnia.
Then, the argument falls apart because it implies that, insomnia hence coffee & not coffee hence insomnia.
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Re: coffee insomnia problem [#permalink] New post 06 Jul 2012, 10:53
Expert's post
This is a causality argument: too much coffee consumption leads to insomnia. However, what if those in the study were already suffering from insomnia, and in order to cope with it (I think we've all been here :)), they began to imbibe large amounts of caffeine? Therefore, in order for the argument to hold true, we have to discount the possibility that sleep deprivation turned the insomniacs into caffeine drinkers.

A. Consumption of caffeine from sources other than coffee, tea, and soft drinks is unlikely to cause insomnia.

We are focused on the link between caffeine and insomnia, not on caffeine across different beverages (which conceivably could differ dramatically).

B. Caffeine consumption is the only commonly occurring cause of insomnia.

Even if this is the case, the argument does not depend on this statement. There could be other commonly occurring causes of insomnia the argument can still hold true: those who drink caffeine are likely to suffer from insomnia.

C. People suffering from insomnia do not typically respond to their lack of sleep by consuming much more caffeine

than they would if they did not suffer from insomnia.


Here we have it: poor insomniacs, innocent in the sin of caffeine consumption :), suddenly began consuming it in large quantities. If that is the case, then we cannot say that caffeine causes insomnia; rather insomnia causes caffeine consumption.

D. The only evidence available to show whether caffeine causes insomnia is statistical evidence showing correlations

between caffeine consumption and insomnia.


The argument does not depend on the statistical evidence mentioned in the argument. There could be other forms of evidence that show the link between caffeine and insomnia. If so, the existence of that new evidence would in no way undermine the argument.

E. Anyone who regularly consumes caffeine in more than moderate quantities will suffer from insomnia.

The argument simply claims a link between caffeine consumption and insomnia. It does not rely on the assumption that anyone who consumes excessive caffeine will suddenly become a red-eyed ranting insomniac.

Hope that helps!
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Re: Although it is sometimes claimed that consuming caffeine at [#permalink] New post 21 Aug 2012, 12:43
Expert's post
Chris...nice explanation.
but I have a doubt. In the premise, it is clearly stated that consuming caffeine at high levels causes insomnia. I guess this is the conclusion and if it is, then on negating B we get " caffeine consumption is not the only cause of insomnia", which destroys the conclusion. But since in this option, we are not talking about high levels of caffeine consumption, so will that be the cause of rejecting this option?
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Re: Although it is sometimes claimed that consuming caffeine at   [#permalink] 21 Aug 2012, 12:43
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