Caffeine is causing 'untimely deaths' and its 'lethality' is being underestimated, a leading expert has warned
Caffeine is so dangerous and is being consumed in such high quantities that it should now be regulated, a leading expert claims.
Dr Jack James says that the stimulant is causing ‘untimely deaths’ and that its 'lethality' is being underestimated.
Dr James, editor in chief of the Journal of Caffeine Research, and head of the department of psychology at Reykjavik University, Iceland, says he is concerned that the substance is increasingly being added to products such as energy drinks, alcoholic drinks and medicines.
As a result, many of us are unwittingly consuming way more than we think - with worrying implications for our health and society as a whole.
Dr James believes the risks caffeine poses to our health are so great that products that contain it should be taxed and restricted like cigarettes and alcohol. Sales to children in particular should be restricted.
He says that as well as tea and coffee, caffeine is found in fizzy drinks, energy drinks, bottled water, alcoholic drinks (such as Tia Maria), cookies, chewing gum, yogurt and flavoured milk.
It is also commonly found in cold and flu remedies, weight loss pills, mints, cosmetics, soaps and even tights to aid slimming.
Even more worrying, he says that caffeine is also frequently used as a diluent (cutting agent) in illicit drugs.
He notes that while some countries in Europe and Scandinavia have begun to take regulatory action, including sales restrictions and product labelling, most countries including the UK and the U.S. have a ‘regulatory vacuum’.
In his provocative editorial 'Death by Caffeine: How Many Caffeine-related Fatalities and Near-misses Must There Be before We Regulate?', he argues that the trend of children downing energy drinks is exacerbating the problem.
He says that in order to highlight the risks of caffeine, products should be labelled with the amount they contain and sales to children in particular should be restricted.
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-2285854/Caffeine-dangerous-regulated-like-alcohol-cigarettes-warns-leading-expert.html#ixzz2MDNkzVzT
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