Tip of the Day
The Buzz on Caffeine
Excessive caffeine consumption is not mathematical, it’s individual. Caffeine sensitivity depends on the amount and frequency of caffeine consumption, body weight, physical condition and overall anxiety level, among other factors. For most healthy adults, moderate amounts of caffeine — 200 to 300 milligrams a day, or about two to three cups of coffee — pose no physical problems.
However, there are reasons why you might need to reduce your caffeine consumption, including if you’re pregnant or nursing or have a medical problem. If you are looking to cut back on your caffeine consumption, start by doing so gradually, then try these tips:
- Mix half regular with half decaffeinated coffee or tea.
- Drink decaffeinated coffee or tea.
- Steep tea for a shorter time. A one-minute steep can contain just half the caffeine of a three-minute brew.
- Keep a cup of water alongside your caffeinated beverage and alternate sips to prevent mindless caffeine drinking.
- Check the label of your favorite soft drink to see if it includes caffeine and, if so, opt for a caffeine-free option.
- Also check the label of your over-the-counter medication, as some contain as much caffeine as one or two cups of coffee in just one dose.
And contrary to popular belief, you cannot become addicted to caffeine, but you can develop a caffeine habit that may exhibit short-term symptoms if you stop consuming caffeine suddenly.