HEALTH

Caffeine addiction is a major health concern, experts warn

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ARLINGTON, Va. (WJLA) - Your morning cup of coffee or afternoon soda could be a sign of a serious problem - a caffeine addiction. A professor at American University thinks it's a condition that could sometimes need treatment.

Monny Hardie-Gray starts her day with a caffeine kick.

“I need it and I start my first cup about 4 o’clock in the morning,” she says.

Throughout the day she drinks three cups of coffee and she doesn’t think she could function without it. She’s probably not alone, but according to a new study co-authored by Laura Juliano of American University, for some people it may be more serious.

The study shows more people are suffering caffeine withdrawal symptoms and some are unable to reduce caffeine consumption, even if they had a reason to like pregnancy or a heart condition. It’s called Caffeine Use Disorder.

Some people say they believe they could be addicted to caffeine, but they also say they could stop drinking it if they needed to.

Juliano says healthy adults should limit caffeine consumption to no more than 400 milligrams a day. That’s about two to three 8-ounce cups of coffee. Pregnant women and people with anxiety should consume less than 200 milligrams a day.

According to the study, manufacturers are not currently required to label caffeine amount, so people will have to know what they’re eating and drinking. 

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