According to FDA, This is the Amount of Caffeine We Should Only Take Per Day.

This topic of caffeine popped up in my mind after writing "My Favorite Moment of the Day". I love the writing style of Lisa Brennan-Jobs (eldest child of the late Apple's co-founder, Steve Jobs), and she wrote a similar topic back in the day.  Including a phrase about coffee 😅

The ending of her essay stuck in my mind because it was so poetic:

"Coffee is my ritual, my interval, the luminous place between now and what's next, more arc than landing. It is ubiquitous and legal, solitary and communal. In my morning, when I take a sip, space opens between the molecules, voices and clatter in the coffee shop separate into bright, tonal bands. My mind fans open. Fireflies blink in my torso. I take it to go, so I can drink and walk alone".

Since then I fantasized of doing the same thing - walking in a busy business avenue, dropping by at SB or at any coffee shop, grabbing a cup of coffee.

Actually I did it a few times when I was still working in the financial districts, feeling like one of those corporate working girls balancing  a hot paper cup of coffee while clutching the office bag. It was so weird, it made me anxious the whole morning 😂

So let's talk about coffee and why you should minimize your caffeine intake. 😄

Are you one of those people who can't seem to begin the day without grabbing a cup of hot coffee? Scientists at the Federal Drug Administration offer a piece of advice: Moderate your caffeine intake.

Coffee is not only the source of caffeine. Tea, cola, and other types of beverages and food also contain a certain amount of caffeine. So you need to check the production composition in the labels of the products to know if it has caffeine. 

Caffeine can be part of a diet for most people, but too much of it can pose a danger to one's health, according to the scientists at FDA. 

However, they emphasized that "too much caffeine intake" varies from person to person due to other factors such as body weight, medications, and individual sensitivity to caffeine.

Caffeine in powder or in the liquid form provides toxic levels of caffeine according to FDA in the US. Just one teaspoon of powdered caffeine is equivalent to about 28 cups of coffee which may cause serious health issues, even death.

It may be safe for adults but children and young adults need to be cautioned about excessive caffeine intake. 

Food that contains caffeine

Caffeine occurs naturally in plants known to produce tea, coffee, and chocolate - Kola nuts, Camellia sinensis, and Cacao plants contain caffeine. 

It also can be found in products used as flavorings such as guarana, yerba mate, Ilex guayusa, ginseng, even packed foods and certain dietary supplements.

How Much Caffeine is Enough for day

Up to 400 milligrams of caffeine per day appears to be safe for most healthy adults. That's roughly four regular cups of coffee, two energy drinks, and 10 cans of cola. But keep in mind that caffeine contents in beverages vary, so better check the labels.

A 12-ounce can of a caffeinated soft drink typically contains 30mg to 40mg of caffeine. About an 8-ounce of green or black tea contains 30-50mg of caffeine, and an 8-ounce cup of coffee contains 80mg to 100mg of caffeine. However, it is higher in energy drinks, around 40-250mg per 8 fluid ounces.

Women who are pregnant, who are trying to become pregnant, and those who are breastfeeding are advised to take less than 200mg of caffeine per day. Or need to consult a doctor for the allowed intake.

Coffee should be limited to just three cups a day - the safer recommendation from Mayo Clinic.

"Decaffeinated". What does it mean?

According to FDA, decaffeinated tea or coffee does not mean it has no caffeine content at all. It only means less caffeine than their regular counterparts. For instance, a decaf coffee typically has 2-15mg in an 8-ounce cup. 

Signs you are consuming too much caffeine than the recommended daily intake:

  • Insomnia
  • Experiencing migraine
  • Jitters
  • Headache
  • Nervousness
  • Irritability
  • Nausea
  • Fast heartbeat
  • Stomach upset
  • Dysphoria or a feeling of unhappiness
  • Muscle tremors 
Caffeine is a type of stimulant that keeps you alert or helps you get the energy boost you need during busy days, but taking it habitually can make your body dependent because caffeine is addictive. 

When is the time you need to curb your caffeine addiction? 

If you are experiencing unpleasant side effects such as nausea, stomach upset, nervousness, insomnia, muscle tremors, fast heartbeat, etc. It's time to cut back on caffeinated food and beverages.

But FDA warns that waning yourself from caffeine should be done gradually because stopping abruptly will cause withdrawal symptoms - anxiety, headache, irritability, and other negative emotions.

To help you curb your caffeine habit, try these tips from Mayo Clinic:
  • Keep tabs. Check how much caffeine you are getting from the food and drinks you are taking every day.
  • Cut back gradually to help your body get used to the lower levels of caffeine and avoid the unpleasant withdrawal effects
  • Go decaf. It may not be zero caffeine, but the lesser content of caffeine the faster you can throw off the habit.
  • Choose tea instead of brewed coffee. Tea beverages contain less caffeine than brewed coffees
  • Shorten the brew time. Brewing coffee and tea in just a short time cuts down the level of caffeine.
  • Black tea contains the highest amount of caffeine among all the teas, so choose green or white tea instead.
  • Check the labels of OTC (over-the-counter) pain relievers. Some of these products contain caffeine.
Cut back on caffeine gradually, if you are drinking three cups a day, you may start by drinking just a cup per day. Self-control is a virtue. 

You may want to read this article (not related to coffee but to Steve Jobs 😂)

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