October 26, 2016

Caffeine in Peanut Butter? FDA Wants More Info

Did you know that one corporation is adding caffeine to peanut butter? STEEM Peanut Butter, Inc. has been doing this, and the FDA is not sure they like it. There is 150 mg of caffeine in each serving of that peanut butter. On December 15, 2015, the FDA sent STEEM a letter asking for information about their use of caffeine in this product. The company has not submitted any information about the safety of caffeine in this product to the FDA. The FDA "remains concerned about the increasing number of products on the market containing added caffeine and the possibility for harmful effects when multiple caffeinated products are eaten simultaneously, especially in products that are attractive to children," the letter states. The U.S. government has not developed guidelines for children's … [Read more...]

CSPI: FDA Should Ban Retail Sale of Bulk Caffeine

The Center for Science in the Public Interest is saying that the FDA should ban the retail sale of bulk caffeine as a dietary supplement. Parents of two young men who died after ingesting this product met with FDA officials and senators to press their cause. CSPI is formally petitioning the FDA over this issue. >Katie and Dennis Stiner of Ohio lost their 18 year old son Logan in May of this year. James and Julie Sweatt of Alabama lost their 24 year old son Wade in July 2014 after he ingested caffeine powder for the first time. One teaspoon of powdered caffeine is equivalent to 25 cups of coffee. It is very difficult to determine the difference between a safe dose and a deadly dose when caffeine is used in this form. Serving sizes are between 1/32 and 1/16 of a teaspoon - amounts that … [Read more...]

FDA Commissioner’s Take on Caffeine in Food and Supplements

How much caffeine should be allowed in food, beverages and supplements? In August 2013, the Institute of Medicine (IOM), an independent nonprofit organization, held a public workshop on that topic at the request of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's (FDA). Today the IOM issued a 164-page summary about the workshop. The report does not make recommendations, but describes the risks associated with caffeine consumption and explores safe levels of consumption. The workshop was prompted by the sudden boom in caffeine-added products including gum, candy, snacks, energy drinks, supplements and bottled water. A safe level of caffeine has never been determined for those products. The only time the FDA has approved the use of added caffeine was for cola. That was in the 1950s. "In the … [Read more...]

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. If 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 … [Read more...]

FDA Defining Boundaries for Caffeine in Consumer Products

The FDA's Michael Taylor has released an article in FDA Voice discussing the limits officials are considering putting on caffeine in consumer products. While many products contain caffeine, some naturally and some added, some products, particularly energy drinks, have come under fire in recent years for having too much of the stimulant. Companies are adding caffeine to everything from gum to waffles, which can all add up to an alarmingly high daily total. It is very easy to consume more caffeine than is safe in today's marketplace. Monster Energy Drink was sued last year for allegedly causing a child's death. Earlier this year, Center for Science in the Public Interest warned consumers about web ads for Five Hour Energy, which is being investigating for allegedly being involved in the … [Read more...]

FDA Applauds Wrigley For Pulling Caffeinated Gum From Market

A little more than a week after introducing its latest chewing gum product, the William Wrigley Jr Co. has temporarily removed Alert Energy Caffeine Gum from the market while the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) rethinks its stance on caffeine as a food additive. The gum, which was rolled out in late April, was latest caffeine-added entry to the market which already includes other gums, jelly beans, trail mix and water. One piece of Alert Energy, which was sold in eight-piece bubble packs, had about as much caffeine as a half a cup of coffee, according to company. When sales of the gum began, the FDA’s Michael Taylor, deputy commissioner for foods and veterinary medicine, released a statement saying: “The only time that FDA explicitly approved the added use of caffeine in a food … [Read more...]

New Gum Prompts FDA to Rethink Caffeine Food Safety Rules

The rollout of Alert Energy Caffeine Gum by the William Wrigley Jr Co. this week has prompted the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to rethink the impact that caffeine as a food additive could have on children and teens. One piece of the gum, which is sold in eight-piece bubble packs, has about as much caffeine as a half a cup of coffee, according to information on the product’s webpage. The product is the latest in a string of foods to which caffeine has been added including jelly beans, trail mix and other gums. Now that coffees and soft drinks aren’t the only source of caffeine on the market, the agency is revisiting caffeine’s health impact. "The only time that FDA explicitly approved the added use of caffeine in a food was for cola and that was in the 1950s. Today, the … [Read more...]

Most Caffeinated Dietary Supplements are Inaccurately Labeled

A study just published in the online version of JAMA Internal Medicine has found that more than half of all caffeinated dietary supplements carry inaccurate labels. Those products, such as Monster Energy Drink and 5-hour Energy, are being investigated by the FDA because they have been associated with illnesses and death. In fact, Monster Beverages was sued in October 2012 after a 14-year-old died after drinking the product. In 2011, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration reported that energy drinks pose potentially serious health risks, leading to a sharp increase in emergency room visits between 2005 and 2009. There have been 13 adverse event reports to the FDA about 5-hour Energy. The laws regulating labeling of supplements are quite lax, allowing … [Read more...]

Web Ad for 5-hour Energy Pulled

The web ad for 5-hour Energy drink has, at least for now, stopped running a web ad criticized by the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI). Last week Food Poisoning Bulletin told you about the ad, which showed CSPI Executive Director Michael F. Jacobson saying it's difficult to die from caffeine because "Someone would really have to make an effort to consume 40 or so 200-mg caffeine tablets." CSPI says the use of that quote is deceptive, giving the false impression that Jacobson or CSPI endorsed the product. In addition, high caffeine levels in 5-hour Energy and other caffeinated drinks can cause many other health issues, including anxiety and insomnia. The product has been associated with convulsions and heart attacks. In fact, 5-hour Energy is under investigation by the FDA … [Read more...]

CSPI Warns Consumers About 5-Hour Energy Web Ads

The Center for Science in the Public Interest is warning consumers not to believe a new web ad for 5-hour Energy. The controversial drink is being investigated for its alleged role in 13 deaths. There have been reports from 92 people who became ill after using the product. The product is sold as a "nutritional supplement", so limits on caffeine that apply to soft drinks and other beverages do not apply to these beverages. Last year, trend data released by the Drug Abuse Warning Network showed a sharp increase in the number of emergency room visits involving energy drinks. In 2005, there were 1,128 visits, and in 2009 there were 13,114 visits, representing a tenfold increase. About half of the visits were made by 18 to 25-year-old patients who combined the drinks with alcohol or other … [Read more...]

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