Health Tip Tuesday! Craving Caffeine? I’m dropping knowledge bombs on your favorite morning drink.
By: Tricia Stefankiewicz
Let’s talk all about caffeine. Our beloved morning drink that fuels us and gets us ready for the day to come with increased feeling of alertness. Caffeine is a stimulant found in products such as coffee, tea, and soda. Caffeine is also found in chocolate, workout supplements, energy drinks and energy shots. Some of the side effects of caffeine include feeling: jittery, nervous, anxious, and increased heart rate. Other side effects include insomnia, increased gastrointestinal symptoms such as diarrhea and acid reflux in those with irritable bowel syndrome. In those with overactive bladder or incontinence caffeine may increase urinary frequency or leaking.
How much caffeine is safe?
Studies suggest up to 400 mg of caffeine per day for “healthy” adults may be safe.
For reference, typical caffeine amount by drink:
• Coffee – 8 oz 80-150 mg
• Tea – 8 oz (Green or black) 30-50 mg
• Soda – 12 oz 30-40 mg
• Energy Drink – 16 oz 150-300 mg
• Energy Shot: – 2 oz 75-300 mg
Keep in mind that caffeine levels vary according to several factors including how long the coffee beans and tea leaves were grown, processed, or brewed. Caffeine dose also varies according to coffee brand. If you drink more than an 8 oz coffee or tea – this will need to be accounted when calculating caffeine amount.
Note that decaf products still contain caffeine, but at much smaller amount than caffeinated drinks. An 8 oz. decaf coffee may contain 2-15 mg of caffeine vs. standard 8 oz regular coffee which contains 80-100 mg.
Who will require a smaller amount of caffeine intake per day?
Women who are pregnant, trying to become pregnant, or breast-feeding should talk with their doctors about limiting caffeine intake to less than 200 mg daily.
Others who may need to decrease daily intake, include those with heart disease and those who are unable to tolerate or have worsened symptoms with caffeine intake. If this sounds like you, cut back on caffeine intake gradually to avoid any side effects including headache, drowsiness, or anxiety.
It is possible that caffeine may interfere with some medications and over the counter supplements. See show note links for additional information.