Hudson Valley Parent

HVP July 2015

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Page 38 of 47 ■ Hudson Valley Parent 39 olizing it the same way," she says. Crouch also notes that factors like size, age, gender, drug interactions, hydration levels and the amount of food in the stomach can mean dif- ferent outcomes for different people when on a caffeine binge. "There is absolutely such a thing as caffeine poisoning, and the dose essentially makes the poison." No FDA regulation Caffeine does not currently fall under the jurisdiction of the Food and Drug Administration, so "energy" products are not regulated. And more and more of these companies are gearing their advertising to adoles- cents as an answer to their busy lives. And it's not just drinks. Your little darlings can now buy "Wired Waf- fl es" (200 mg caffeine), "Bang! Caf- feinated Ice Cream (125 mg caffeine) or even "Crackhead Expresso Beans" (200mg). Until the FDA begins regulation of caffeine, it is up to parents to edu- cate themselves and their kids about the drinks they are putting into their bodies. There are many adverse side effects of caffeine in large amounts, which need to be taken into consid- eration. So wake up parents (pun intend- ed) and watch out for your teen's caffeine consumption. It could save their lives. Kymberly Breckenridge is a free- lance writer living with her family in Rhinebeck. "We ask them about drug and alcohol use, but not about ca eine. I'm not even sure they see it as a drug." — Dr. Barbara Payne, pediatrician

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