Kids and caffeine: Is it really safe to consume? - New York News

Kids and caffeine: Is it really safe to consume?

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(WJBK) -

Research shows children and young adults are drinking less caffeinated soda pop, but they're taking in more energy drinks and coffee.

"So, the research didn't really find a mean increase in overall caffeine consumption. However, they did find that there was a greater proportion of caffeine coming from coffee and energy drinks instead of soda," says Tara Harwood, R.D. from Cleveland Clinic Children's.

The CDC looked analyzed about 22,000 kids and young adults of the ages 2 to 22 and found 75 percent of them consume caffeine. Soda pop used to be the main source, but more recently in 2010 coffee and energy drinks started taking over.

Amid health concerns, the FDA is now investigating the effects of caffeine in food and drinks on kids.

Meanwhile, the American Academy of Pediatrics says kids should stay away from stimulant-containing energy drinks.  

"I definitely do not recommend energy drinks because they have this combination of caffeine and other ingredients that could have a synergistic effect, meaning the effects of the caffeine could be amplified, and we really don't know what that could do to your child," says Harwood.

Doctors say if kids are lethargic they can get an energy boost from exercise.  For drinks, water is considered the best choice.

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