Peer-reviewed scientific studies of caffeine’s health effects continue to prove that caffeine has an outstanding safely profile and offers a truly astonishing list of health benefits.  Nevertheless, the spectre of caffeine paranoia constantly returns, threatening to scare us away from benefiting from and enjoying caffeine.  The latest entry in the caffeine paranoia parade is an article in the The Washington Post, “Why Caffeine is Bad for Children.”

Caffeine Paranoia

This article is filled with so many distortions and outright errors of fact that we don’t have room to address them all.   However, a few examples may help readers to forget these scare tactics.  For example, the story claims that caffeine dehydrates you, that it hinders your production of serotonin, and that caffeine is addictive.
These statements are absolutely false!

Caffeine does not alter the fluid balance of the organs in the body and, without question, does not “cause the body to eliminate water.”  In addition, caffeine actually helps adjust and regulate serotonin production, which is the primary reason caffeine can help to alleviate migraine headaches.  Finally, because, by definition, addictive drugs are drugs that people are helpless to stop using even though these drugs are causing serious problems, caffeine is not properly described as an addictive drug.  After all, no one ever lost his house, his job, his wife, or his life because he couldn’t stop using caffeine!
In fact, double-blind studies have proven that, in general, children can enjoy caffeine and its benefits without experiencing any problems.   In other words, research has proven that caffeine is not “bad for children.”  Of course, it is obvious that parents should be aware of the amount of caffeine their children are consuming so that they can make sure that their children aren’t using too much.  Too much caffeine is bad for adults or children– but this does not mean that caffeine hurts children!
So, if you have children, you should always supervise their use of any foods and drugs.  But if moderate amounts of caffeine help your children to feel good and think more clearly, there is no reason on earth to try to stop them from enjoying these benefits.

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