FDA restricts potentially lethal caffeine products

Caffeine is as much a part of American life as football and fast food. Your coworkers might insist that they can’t function without a morning cup of coffee. The chemical has even found its place in beauty and weight loss products.

Although caffeine surrounds us, it can be fatal in large quantities. In April, the FDA began cracking down on powdered and liquid caffeine supplements to prevent accidental overdose. The FDA now bans these supplements in bulk quantities, but they can still be available to consumers in small packages.

How much caffeine is too much?

Small amounts of caffeine can be beneficial for some purposes, including in certain medications. A cup of regular coffee won’t hurt. However, the body can easily become overwhelmed with large doses.

According to the FDA, a person should not consume more than 200 milligrams of caffeine per serving. A rush of concentrated caffeine greater than this amount may be extremely dangerous to vital organs, including the heart.

In terms of caffeine powders, sixteen 200mg doses can fit into a single teaspoon. The FDA believes that consumers can easily make errors while measuring the dose. Some might fail to measure at all or mistake the products for another common household substance, such as vinegar or sugar.

Check your products

Whenever taking caffeinated products or dietary supplements of any kind, be sure to know the correct dosage. Ingesting too much of certain substances can lead to serious health complications.

Even if you know the proper dose, supplements aren’t always safe. This market is not as carefully regulated as pharmaceuticals, which allows the risk for dangerous products to hit shelves.

Manufacturers have a legal obligation to produce safe products as well as label them accurately and clearly. If they fail to do so, they may be held accountable for resulting injuries in a court of law.

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