How much caffeine are children and young adults consuming?
Tue, 11 Feb 2014 23:32:11 GMT —
Six to 11-year-olds are consuming 32 milligrams of caffeine a day, which is about the same amount as one can of Coke, according to a new government study.
Staci Ramsey, a teacher at Discovery School, said a toddler with soda isn't a rare sight.
"I see it in a lot in cup, or bottles, which is kind of unreal," Ramsey said.
She said when a child walks into the school with soda, she usually throws it out.
"A sip here and there isn't going to harm them. An actual coke for an adult is not suitable for a child," Ramsey said.
The study also found that soda was the second most common source for caffeine in children under 5, right after tea.
Caffeine intake only increases with age. Teenagers and young adults are consuming as much as 125 milligrams of caffeine a day. That is equivalent to about three or four cans of Coke.
The American Academy of Pediatrics warns that caffeine intake can stunt growth and pose other health risks, but it isn't stopping teens from reaching for the coffee.
"I usually have a cup a day sometimes two, depending on how much homework I have. Because that's what keeps me up at night when I'm trying to do work," said Renae, a high school student.
Ryan, another high school student, said he thinks his peers see drinking coffee as a social activity.
"I'd say we drink more coffee than we used to.. It's a fun way to go hang out and talk," he said.