When Can Kids Start Drinking Coffee?

Whenever you need a quick energy boost, a hot cup of coffee will do the trick. While most adults enjoy drinking a cup or two of coffee every day, it also prompts a question — when can kids, aged 12 and below, start drinking coffee?

Drinking coffee can give you health benefits, such as lowering the risk of type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and protection against liver cirrhosis. If you’re amazed by the benefits of coffee to your health, try visiting Home Grounds for more coffee-related information.

However, the question still remains, is it safe for your young ones?

Why Do Kids Suddenly Want Coffee?

Sometimes, it makes sense that teenagers consume coffee to get up early or stay up late to study for exams. But, nowadays, why do young kids suddenly want to drink coffee?

If your kid had been rushing you with the question of whether he or she is old enough to drink coffee, it might be because of the booming trend of coffee. This trend includes:

  • Coffee being added in sweet drinks, such as caramel macchiato floats, cotton candy coffee, and pumpkin spice frappuccino.
  • The prominence of coffee shops and cafes.
  • The abundance of social media influence.

Does It Stunt Your Child’s Growth?

There’s a common claim that allowing your children to drink coffee can stunt their growth, as it’s claimed that the beverage affects the children’s calcium absorption. However, the truth is, coffee does not have that effect on kids.

For example, In Scandinavian countries, children start to drink coffee at a rather young age compared to the United States. However, when you compare the average heights in both countries, the growth stunt claim may seem not to correlate at all.

In Sweden, the average height of adult males is 5’10,” and adult females average at 5’6”. While in the United States where it’s commonly claimed, the average height of males is 5’9” and adult females average at 5’3”.

What Are Its Effects?

Although coffee doesn’t really affect a child’s growth, it doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s without effects. Most people drink coffee because of its caffeine content — a natural stimulant that blocks adenosine receptors in your brain.

Adenosine is a chemical created in the brain that binds to the adenosine receptors. This binding slows down the body’s nerve cell activity and causes drowsiness. However, when you drink coffee, caffeine binds to the adenosine receptors instead of adenosine. As a result, your nerve cell no longer identifies adenosine, as caffeine already took up all the receptors.

However, for a child that’s already awake and active, this can lead to caffeine-induced hyperactivity or insomnia. Children that drink too much coffee can also develop irritability, anxiety, nausea, muscle tremors, irregular heartbeat, and increased nervousness. In general, excessive caffeine intake can make a child jumpier or prone to tantrums.

Thus, it’s essential to know how much caffeine is enough for your child. However, there are no studies that talk about caffeine intake in children. Instead, most of these studies focus on adult caffeine consumption.

he recommended caffeine consumption for adults is about 200 to 300 mg (milligrams) per day. For example, the average-sized coffee cup can hold about 8 ounces of fluid and can contain around 95mg of caffeine. It’s also essential to know that espresso will have more caffeine content at 64mg of caffeine per ounce than a regular cup of coffee.

When Should They Start?

Now that you know a thing or two about coffee and caffeine’s effect on children, you might be wondering when should you allow your kids to start drinking coffee. However, there really is no perfect time to allow your children.

A good rule of thumb to follow is to wait until your kid is about 12 years old. The only important thing to do is to watch your child’s coffee consumption. Remember, there’s a significant difference between allowing sweet treats and a daily cup of coffee.

Additionally, you should also be aware that caffeine is an addictive substance. If your child becomes caffeine dependent, you should notice withdrawal symptoms within 24 hours, such as headaches or sluggishness. However, it’s essential to note that the addiction is caused by caffeine, which is a substance not only found in coffee but also sodas and energy drinks.

Closing Thoughts

When it comes to coffee consumption, moderation is the key. Keep in mind that coffee isn’t the only source of caffeine in your child’s diet. Also, always make sure that he or she is not having too much of any.

In addition, you should also avoid giving your child any beverage with too much sugar and caffeine less than 5 hours before bedtime. Keep your kids happy and healthy by teaching them how to be responsible coffee drinkers.

Dear Jack: Webisodes 7 & 8 of Jack-Man, Plus Motivational Speech; Shia LaBeouf Style

4 years, 6 months.

Dear Jack: Webisodes 7 & 8 of Jack-Man, Plus Motivational Speech; Shia LaBeouf Style

Dear Jack,

This week we released 2 new webisodes of Jack-Man. In Webisode 7, “Caffeine Conspiracy,” Green Meanie attempts to sell Jack-Man on drinking soda by explaining it will give him extra energy.

Of course, he is referring to the addictive, unregulated caffeine. Green Meanie openly acknowledges his “caffeine conspiracy” to addict others to his soda.

He also recruits his old friend Caffeine Cowboy to intimidate Jack-Man into drinking soda, resulting in a draw.

Dear Jack: Webisodes 7 & 8 of Jack-Man, Plus Motivational Speech; Shia LaBeouf Style

Webisode 8, “Banana Shenanigans,” shows Caffeine Cowboy becoming a politician in an attempt to make bananas illegal, so that Jack-Man will no longer have access to what gives him his superpowers.

We also decided this week to take advantage of a trending video of Shia LaBeouf.

You, as Jack-Man, delivered the same motivation speech.

This coming weekend, we’re planning on filming 2 more webisodes, which will introduce a new concept in our Jack-Man webseries: allowing Green Meanie to interact with the audience in attempt to get ideas to drink Jack-Man to give in to Green Meanie’s agenda.

I like the concept of “choose your own adventure” being incorporated into our show. So we should have 10 episodes up by early next week.

Before we know, we’ll be doing our 100th webisode. And so many cool things can happen between now and then.

It helps that you’re so cooperative as we make this videos. A few weeks ago as we were filming in the Franklin Factory, a lady walked by and commented under her breath, “Good luck getting a kid to make a video.”

She didn’t realize I didn’t need good luck.

Making these videos is what we do. It’s our father and son quality time each weekend, which is important.

I love knowing in the midst of our busy lifestyle, we get to dedicate time together for this.

Love,

Daddy

GT’s Synergy Enlightened Kombucha Grape Chia: Vegan Friendly Review/Why I Gave Up Caffeine

Last September, five months after becoming a vegan, I took it a step further and swore off caffeine as well. I have been caffeine-free for nearly a year now.

Synergy Grape Chia: Vegan Friendly Review/Why I Gave Up Caffeine

I had begun perceiving caffeine as nothing more than the sophisticated (and socially acceptable) version of nicotine. Of course, in retrospect, I see that is indeed the case:

Caffeine had been “waking me up and keeping me awake” simply because I was addicted to it. To me, it was circular reasoning; like with nicotine.

After dedicating a whole day to going cold turkey to give up caffeine and therefore suffering a debilitating headache that took me to the floor for a couple of hours, I have had no further withdrawals.

article-2382606-1B19D080000005DC-581_634x692

I admire Starbucks for their ability to capitalize on the world’s most legal and unregulated addictive substance and still make it seem classy. Their coffee contains at  twice the amount of McDonalds’ coffee to give you an extra kick and to get you extra addicted; as you can see in the chart above, orginally posted in the article How Much Caffeine Is Really In Your Morning Coffee?

With that being said, I no longer participate in Starbucks’ expensive scheme.

Because I am no longer addicted to caffeine, nor do I need it to wake up in the morning.

So of course, being a vegan who doesn’t consume caffeine, I am asked from time to time what I drink in the morning when I wake up.

The short answer is Kombucha tea… when I can afford it.

The specific answer is GT’s Synergy Enlightened Kombucha Grape Chia. It’s vegan, non-GMO, and organic.

I want to be clear that GT’s Synergy Enlightened Kombucha Grape Chia is not endorsing this review. They did not send me a case of their drinks in hopes I would positively review their product.

Instead, I bought a case of GT’s Synergy Enlightened Kombucha Grape Chia recently at Whole Foods. Usually, they cost around $3.50 per bottle, but at Whole Foods, when something is on sale, you get it for the sale price plus an addition 10% for buying the case, so I saved about $7, which is basically like getting 2 bottles free.

Synergy Grape Chia: Vegan Friendly Review/Why I Gave Up Caffeine

While at first glance GT’s Synergy Enlightened Kombucha Grape Chia might sound like an expensive habit, compare it to the price of just one latte at any coffee shop.

However, I only drink half a bottle during the course of one day, so as long as I catch GT’s Synergy Enlightened Kombucha Grape Chia on sale and buy it in bulk, I’m only looking at around 1.50 per day for my habit.

I don’t want to make it seem like Kombucha tea,GT’s Synergy Enlightened Kombucha Grape Chia specifically, simply and perfectly replaces the effects on caffeine.

Instead, the way I want to word it is that it makes me feel ultimately balanced.

Whereas caffeine gives you a temporary bolt of awareness and energy that typically ends with a crash later on in the day, Kombucha regulates my mind and body to a good neutral level.

I like to start off each morning with half a bottle, when I can. Meanwhile, my wife likes to drink a little bit of it before she goes to bed.

There are other flavors, but grape is definitely the stand-out for me.

It’s sort of like the healthy version of Grape Kool-Aid, coffee, and even beer, combined.

Let me know what you think of GT’s Synergy Enlightened Kombucha Grape Chia after you try it… and thanks for reading!

Nashville Dad Attempts To Give Up Caffeine For Life

healthnutshell: That’s Not Food

Why don’t beer companies have to put the nutritional facts label on their bottles like soft drink companies do?

My wife and I have a few sayings at our house that we shout at the TV when fast food commercials come on, like this one:  “That’s not food!”  There’s one for Steak N’ Shake where they advertise 4 meals for under $4 each.  These “meals” consisted of fried burgers on white bread with greasy fries and a sugary soda.  Recently my wife sarcastically reprimanded the TV when she saw that commercial:  “Yeah, because that’s a meal.”

As learned on one of our favorite documentaries ever, Food Inc., almost always  nutritious food costs more than unhealthy food.  Because unhealthy food (eaten for pleasure, mood enhancement, and/or convenience) isn’t really food.  And that’s why we tend to say “that’s not food!” in our house when we see something that’s an imposter.

By all means, I’ve been tempted for months now by Pizza Hut’s “any pizza, any toppings, $10” special.  What a deal.  But I also know that just a few slices would max out my sodium, fat, and sugar for the day.  If it seems to be too good of a deal, it probably isn’t food. I haven’t given in so far, and I’m beginning to think I won’t.

Last weekend my wife’s stomach was bothering her so I got her some ginger ale, which is supposed to be a good remedy.  It worked.  But the next day she was a little disappointed to see that an 8 ounce serving contains 24 grams of sugar (the health equivalent to smoking two cigarettes).  So that got us to thinking about other sodas.  Like dark colas and bright orange sodas.  More sugar, more artificial coloring, and loads of caffeine.

Beer and alcohol virtually contain no sugar because it converts alcohol.  I’m very cautious of eating or drinking things that I know were not consumed during Biblical times.  Jesus and his disciples drank wine, not grape juice (which is full of sugar).  They also didn’t drink sweat tea or chocolate milk, which often have much more sugar than soda.

Read “healthnutshell: A Tablespoon of Sugar or a Cigarette?”
http://wp.me/pxqBU-sf

And then the irony jumped out at us.  For sodas, a person can look on the label to see the nutritional value (or lack of it, or degenerate value).  But not for beer.  Beer only contains 4 ingredients (which are all natural) and when compared side by side for nutrition which I’ll do in a minute, is actually healthy for an adult, whereas soda never can be because of its sugary nature.

Read “healthnutshell: Barley into Beer”
http://wp.me/pxqBU-2L

It’s funny to imagine all the foods and drinks with a nutritional facts label on them, though they have the opposition of nutrition in them.  Yet drinking a beer or glass of wine a day is healthy for a person, but it’s not treated as food.  With a little help from Yahoo Answers, I found out why.  No big conspiracy, though.

1)     Because alcohol is involved, beer is not regulated by the FDA.  Alcoholic beverages are instead monitored by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms, and they don’t require nutritional labels for products.

2)     In theory, all beer technically ever can be is the same four ingredients: water, yeast, barley, and hops.  Beer is beer.  It’s just brewed in different ways.  There’s no wonder what’s inside the bottle, unlike soda.

3)     General disinterest.  There have been no complaint letters from people wanting to know the nutritional value of the beer they drink.

4)     Technically there is no nutritional value.  Like tea.  Or water.

Here’s that side by side comparison:

12 oz. can of Coca Cola

Nutritional facts: 140 calories, 50 mg sodium, 39 grams of carbs, 39 grams of sugar

(over time is the equivalent of smoking 3.5 cigarettes)

Health benefits: none

Drug ingredient: caffeine

12 oz. bottle of Killian’s Irish Red

163 calories, 13 mg sodium, 13.8 grams of carbs, 0 grams of sugar

Health benefits: decreases risk of heart disease, improves bone density, flushes kidneys, reduces blood clotting

Drug ingredient: alcohol

They both have essentially the same number of calories.  But Coke contains about 3.5 tablespoons of sugar and unknown, unnatural, and unpronounceable ingredients.  Plus added caffeine, which isn’t necessarily a good thing.

Whereas Killian’s Irish Red has no sugar (it’s been naturally converted to alcohol) and contains only familiar, natural, and pronounceable ingredients.  Plus several health benefits, and that’s obviously a good thing.

As I mentioned earlier, cheap food with little to no nutrition almost always costs less than food that is actually good for the human body:

Cost of a 12 pack of Cokes: around $4

Cost of a 6 pack of Killian’s: around $6

Granted, not everyone can handle alcohol.  Whether they have a family history of alcoholism, an addictive personality, a lack of self-control, or a moral opposition (Baptist, Church of Christ, Mormon, Muslim, etc.). Fortunately, I don’t.

When I look at the comparison it’s pretty obvious which way I’m gonna go.  I choose the healthy option.  Knowing that too much of anything is never healthy.  “Drinking responsibly” takes on a whole new meaning.

No matter how you look at it, choosing what to drink is a moral decision.





Christianity and Beer

Would Jesus drink beer?  Maybe the question is, did He?

Ironically, in the way that many Christians view alcohol consumption to be okay when in moderation, I feel the same way about other beverages- ones that contain no alcohol. A typical can of soda (or tall glass of sweet tea) consists of about 3 to 4 tablespoons of sugar, not to mention the caffeine. Would I normally eat 3 to 4 tablespoons of sugar in one sitting? No way, that’s disgusting and totally unhealthy. Sugar is at the very top of the food pyramid and should be used sparingly. But that’s what soda is. And it’s so common. No “sin associations” either.

But it is extremely difficult for my conscience to deal with the thought that if the body is a temple, how consuming that much sugar all in the name of a common beverage is justifiable, especially compared to a single serving of beer or wine. Last night I drank two glasses of Dr. Pepper with some friends. And today I actually am a little ashamed that I did it.

And that is the power of taboo and its attached guilt. I feel bad about drinking soda, while someone else may feel halfway guilty about drinking some wine at a wedding. One person may be offended by me drinking a 12 ounce bottle of Blue Moon beer, but I may be offended by seeing someone drinking a liter sized bottle of Mountain Dew.

Both can be abused. Beer can cause drunkenness and alcoholism when handled irresponsibly (causing harm to self and others, possible to strangers). Drunkenness is an immediate warning that too much has been consumed. Sugary drinks do not cause drunkenness (but can also cause harm to self and others, through second hand poor dieting habits). Since no drunkenness is involved with sugary drinks, they have no immediate way to warn a person of the unhealthy dangers they can do to the human body when consumed too regularly.

I believe laws for drunk driving should be much stricter than they are. I disapprove of drunk driving as much as I loathe careless drivers and drivers that eat and/or text while driving. As much as I loathe murderers and perverts of every kind. Ultimately beer is one of those things like sex and money- wonderful, yet so easily can by used to corrupt, when mishandled.

Diet sodas, I don’t trust ’em. After learning that my parents pour a little bit of Sweet’n Low onto ant beds in their yard, which within a few days kills off the whole colony, I figure artificial sweeteners are left better off as a pesticide. The tiny ants’ bodies can’t handle the unnatural ingredients in the artificial sweeteners. Maybe my 5’ 9”, 170 pound body can, but it’s just not a drug I am willing to experiment with.

Juice that is actually 100% natural (no added sugars or dyes) is bearable, but also has a high content of sugar. So if I do drink 8 ounce servings of juice, I realize that I have to consider the sugar content just as I would a normal beverage.  That is equal to a few tablespoons of sugar.  But if the fruit is eaten in its whole form, the fiber of the fruit itself absorbs the sugar so that it does not count as our actual sugar intake for the day.

So for me, I’m not left with many drink choices or dinner. I do drink a minimum on 3 liters of water throughout the day. But in addition to water with my evening meal, I often have a bottle of good beer (not anything cheap that can be easily found in a can, not anything with the word “lite” in its name, not anything that is advertised through funny commercials during the Super Bowl).

I can enjoy the simple formula of the drink that has been enjoyed since Biblical times (it was brought to America by the Christian Pilgrims who landed at Plymouth Rock). Water, barley, yeast, and hops (from the small family of flowering plants called Cannabaceae, in which cannabis is also a member). Beer contains no fat or cholesterol. Studies show then when consumed regularly in repsonsible amounts, beer can help the body fight against stroke, heart attacks, breast cancer and Alzheimer’s, to name a few benefits. When it’s consumed responsibly, it’s healthy and good. When it’s abused, it’s unhealthy and dangerous. Too much of anything usually isn’t a good thing anyway.

So did Jesus drink beer?  It’s obvious He drank wine.  Beer has been around since at least 9,000 B.C.  and was discovered/invented in Egypt, so I’m sure He had easy access.  Since it wasn’t taboo for His culture to responsibly drink alcohol, I would actually be surprised if Jesus didn’t drink beer.  But again, wine has a high alcohol content than beer anyway.  Choose your irony.