May 28, 2023

Do You Consume Too Much Caffeine?

A study published in Food and Chemical Toxicology looked at caffeine consumption in the United States. Most of the caffeine we consume every day comes from beverages; from carbonated soft drinks, tea, energy drinks and shots, coffee, and some fruit flavored beverages. The introduction of beverages such as energy drinks and energy shots changed the landscape of caffeinated beverages.

Warning Recall SignIf you are a healthy adult, moderate caffeine consumption (up to 400 mg/day) isn’t bad for you. It is associated with weight loss, improved glucose tolerance, reduced risk of Parkinson’s and cancer, as well as improvements in concentration and athletic performance. But for children, too much caffeine can be bad. And higher levels can cause anxiety, headaches, and restlessness. In addition, when caffeine consumption is stopped abruptly, side effects such as headache and drowsiness can be experienced.

A survey about caffeine consumption was sent out and collected from October 2010 to September 2011. Of the 42,851 respondents, 37,602 consumed at least one caffeinated beverage; this is about 85$ of the U.S. population. More than 98% of beverage caffeine came from coffee, tea, carbonated soft drinks, and energy drinks. The survey found that the mean daily caffeine intake from all consumers was 165 mg/day. The proportion of caffeine consumers in the population ranged from 43% in the 2-5 years ago group to almost 100% in the over 65 years age group.

Researchers conclude that while tea consumption has remained stable and only contributes a small amount of caffeine to U.S. diets, specialty coffees could be an issue. Many people have a low awareness of their caffeine content, which is quite variable. Caffeine content of specialty drinks from a single vendor on six consecutive days ranged from 259 to 564 mg per 16 fluid ounces. However, the mean daily caffeine intake from all consumers is 165 mg/day, well within the 400 mg safe limit. The study also found a low consumption of energy drinks and shots, which have been problematic in recent years.


  1. Maureen Beach says

    This study points out that, in relation to consumers overall calorie intake, there is “low consumption of energy drinks and shots.” This finding is consistent with an FDA-commissioned study that focused on teens and young adults ages 14 to 21, which revealed that of the approximately 100 milligrams of caffeine consumed on average on a daily basis the majority came from beverages other than energy drinks. Also, importantly, most mainstream energy drinks have about half the amount of caffeine as a comparable size cup of coffeehouse coffee.

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