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75% Of Young Children Drink Caffeine, Study Finds

A new study finds that the majority of young children consume caffeine daily, and the more caffeine they consume, the less they sleep.

baby with soda can

Photo: Troy B Thompson (flickr)

Some children as young as 5 years old were consuming the equivalent of a can of soda a day.

[photo 1]

Sleepless Nights For Kids

A study recently published by The Journal of Pediatrics found that 75% of children surveyed consumed caffeine on a daily basis.

The study originally researched correlations between the diets of children in 228 urban families and bed wetting. While researchers found that caffeine is not linked to bed wetting, it does have negative effects on how much children sleep. As one would imagine, the more caffeine kids drank, the less they slept.

Somewhat alarmingly, some children as young as 5 years old were consuming the equivalent of a can of soda a day. Dr. William Warzak, PhD also notes that children drink more caffeine as they get older.

How Much is Too Much? How Young is Too Young?

The Food and Drug administration does not have a set guideline for children’s caffeine consumption. However, the Canadian guidelines suggest that 4 to 6 year old children should drink no more than the equivalent of the amount of caffeine found in a 12-ounce can of soda per day.

As there is not much data on the specific effects of caffeine on children, the authors impress the importance of monitoring children’s caffeine consumption to parents. “Parents should be aware of the potentially negative influence of caffeine on a child’s sleep quality and daily functioning,” explains Dr. Warzak.

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Julie Rooney

Julie Rooney is a vegetarian, musician, and artist who primarily works in video and new media. Currently she is the director of Low Road Gallery, a non-profit contemporary art gallery located in Greencastle, Indiana.

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