Kids: Soda Less, Caffeine More

I was shocked to see the kid sitting next to me at a recent event sipping from a cup of coffee.

"You drink coffee?" I asked, stupidly.

"Yeah, it keeps me awake," this boy said.  "Sometimes I fall asleep in school."  He added that, with all the stress from seventh grade, he needs the caffeine to keep on-track, and alert.   

I was shocked.  

Even though I'm the last living human never to have drunk a cup of coffee (my first taste was after crossing the English Channel after a night of seasickness so I suppose that's a reason why), I still find it incredible that kids have now discovered the stuff.

According to The Mommy Files, kids are drinking less soda, which is good, but more coffee, which, not so much.  

They're also guzzling energy drinks.  Starbucks' Frappucinos and Red Bull are very popular among the preteen and teen set. Of all the beverages kids drink today, coffee is the favored liquid, at 24% of total youth uptake, an increase of 14% since 1999, Amy Graff reports.

The consumption of energy drinks by this age group are even more alarming.

“There is a lot of confusion about sports drinks and energy drinks, and adolescents are often unaware of the differences in these products,” Dr. Marcie Beth Schneider, MD, FAAP, a member of the AAP Committee on Nutrition and co-author of the report, tells Graff. “Some kids are drinking energy drinks – containing large amounts of caffeine – when their goal is simply to rehydrate after exercise. This means they are ingesting large amounts of caffeine and other stimulants, which can be dangerous.”





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