Overstimulated? Most kids (even ages 2-5) get caffeine
Health news – Almost three-quarters of young people ages 2 to 22 consume at least some caffeine each day — including 63% of children ages 2 to 5, according to an analysis in the March issue of Pediatrics.
The American Academy of Pediatrics discourages caffeine consumption by young people and says that “stimulant-containing energy drinks have no place in the diets of children and adolescents.”
Researchers who analyzed consumption from 1999-2010 found coffee accounted for only 10% of caffeine intake in 1999 -2000, but nearly 24% in 2009-2010.
And energy drinks, which were not even tracked by the U.S. Department of Agriculture in 1999-2000, represented nearly 6% of caffeine intake in 2009-2010.
Among kids ages 2 to 5, tea overtook soda as the largest contributor to caffeine intake in 2009-2010.
Too much caffeine can increase heart rate and blood pressure, hyperactivity and anxiety, the study notes.
For healthy adults, the FDA says 400 milligrams a day (the amount in about three 8 oz. cups of coffee) is “not generally associated with dangerous, negative effects.” The agency has not set a safe level for children. – USA Today
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