Due to its wildly growing popularity, the FDA has been prompted to issue a safety advisory about the harmful and deadly effects of consuming caffeine powder.
Since it’s readily available and provided in bulk, young adults and teenagers are turning to caffeine powder for added stimulation or for help losing weight. Sadly, many aren’t aware of its harmful effects.
Unregulated, Easy to Buy, and Inexpensive
Young adults are drawn to this trending drug due in part to its perceived benefits, like being able to study longer, increased alertness, improved concentration, and enhanced mood. It’s also been said that caffeine improves athletic performance by reducing the perception of pain and fatigue.
This is likely why there has been an increase in reported caffeine powder–related deaths since 2010—most recently, the Ohio teen who overdosed in May.
“The public does not realize the caffeine content present in these products and the risk associated with ingestion of even small quantities,” says Chris Holstege, MD, director of toxicology and assistant professor at the University of Virginia School of Medicine.
A teaspoon of pure caffeine powder is equivalent to about twenty-five cups of coffee. That amount is lethal for anyone, and because it’s considered a dietary supplement it’s not subject to FDA regulations.
Caffeine powder is so potent that it’s nearly impossible to safely measure any amount that doesn’t risk an overdose or even death.
Caffeine toxicity can cause fast and erratic heartbeat, vomiting, diarrhea, seizures, hallucinations, muscle twitching, and disorientation-like symptoms: symptoms that are far more extreme than those caused by consuming too many sodas, coffees, or energy drinks.
What You Can Do
Per the FDA, it is strongly suggested to avoid the consumption of caffeine powder altogether as there isn’t a precise way to measure it without surrendering to the risks.
Parents are also encouraged to talk to their children about the potential dangers and risks children can suffer by consuming even the tiniest amount of it. If you have questions about caffeine powder, contact us today.