Hudson Valley Parent

HVP July 2015

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36 Hudson Valley Parent ■ July 2015 By KYMBERLY BRECKENRIDGE O n a cold February Monday in my junior year of high school, I stumbled down the stairs and, in an act of defiance, poured myself a cup of forbidden coffee. Steeling myself against my parent's outrage, I was instead met with mild interest and a gentle warning to drink only two cups a day. As my parents are usually right, I have always tried to live by their simple rule. But even if teenagers today are heeding the two-cup rule when it comes to coffee, there are now so many other ways to ingest caffeine in amounts that could jolt an elephant from a coma. The Mayo Clinic recommends that adults consume no more than 400 milligrams per day, and that adoles- cents limit their caffeine intake to 100 mg per day, roughly the amount of one small cup of brewed coffee (although a Starbucks 16-ounce grande coffee contains about 330 mg of caffeine). Beyond coee In one beverage alone, your child could be drinking three times the amount of recommended caffeine. Moreover, the scientist in me can't help but wonder if 100 mg a day is a relative figure, given the variations in children's size, weight and metab- olism. For those parents who wouldn't dream of giving their kids a cup of joe, keep in mind that a 20-ounce bottle of Mountain Dew contains 54 mg of caffeine, and a 20-ounce bottle Is your teen OD'ing on caffeine? The hidden dangers of coffee and energy drinks

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