Excessive caffeine intake can affect your health
Tue, 28 Feb 2012 22:43:22 GMT —
For many of us, caffeine is the only thing that gets us through the day.
But recent research shows that excessive caffeine intake can lead to health problems, some as severe as hallucinations. Even a moderate intake of 200-300mg a day, which is around two to four cups of coffee, can affect your sleeping habits and health.
"Things like insomnia, problems sleeping, nervousness, being jittery, restless, irritability, those can all go along with excessive caffeine intake," said Stacey Munson, Dietician at the Jefferson County Health Center.
Caffeine is a stimulant, which affects your central nervous system. Munson says that anyone who exceeds that daily limit of 200-300mg daily can have unpredictable and longer-lasting side-effects. However, there is no good way to tell how much is too much.
"You know, there's not an official 'cap', but again, that two to three hundred milligrams is a pretty safe and moderate zone for caffeine, so to speak," Munson said. "So much above that moderate level, you know, the effects are a little bit harder to predict and there are going to be more side effects."
Energy drinks that use a combination of caffeine, sugar and calories can be particularly dangerous. Munson also said to look out for food and drinks that you may not be aware contain caffeine, like orange soda and chocolate.
Additionally, those who consistently ingest excessive amounts of caffeine tend to build up a tolerance level, and their bodies adjust to being jittery and restless. However, there is little known about how consistent, daily, excessive intake can affect one's health in the long term.