How much caffeine is too much?

How much caffeine is too much?

My kids like the taste of coffee. If I'm having decaf, I'll let them have a sip.

But after one 16-year-old in South Carolina died this week from a "caffeine-induced cardiac event," I'm feeling a little shaky myself. I can't even imagine how devastated his family must be feeling.

I had no idea caffeine could be deadly. We don't typically consider caffeine a drug. We get up every morning and have a cup of coffee. Or two. Starbucks is so common you can barely pass a street corner without seeing one. It's not (yet) considered a banned substance for athletes. In fact, experts recommend having a cup of coffee before a workout to boost your performance.

So how do you know how much is too much for you? At what age can you start letting kids drink coffee? Should there be prescribed limits? What about including caffeine content on nutrition labels?

After something so tragic has happened, perhaps we should clearly understand know how much caffeine we're consuming in our foods and beverages.

As my kids get older and continue to develop a taste for "adult foods and drinks" I'm starting to worry. How much is too much and should it be allowed at all?


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