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Foods and Drinks without Caffeine

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Food NameCaloriesCarbCaffeine
Butter, salted7170.060
Butter, whipped, with salt7170.060
Butter oil, anhydrous8760.000
Cheese, blue3532.340
Cheese, brick3712.790
Cheese, brie3340.450
Cheese, camembert3000.460
Cheese, cheddar4031.280
Cheese, colby3942.570
Cheese, cottage, creamed, large or small curd983.380
Cheese, cottage, creamed, with fruit974.610
Cheese, cottage, nonfat, uncreamed, dry, large or small curd726.660
Cheese, cottage, lowfat, 2% milkfat863.660
Cheese, cottage, lowfat, 1% milkfat722.720
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  • Abbreviations: g = gram, mg = milligram, mcg = microgram, kcal = kilocalorie, kJ = kilojoule.






Caffeine in Foods and Drinks

information from the National Institutes of Health

Caffeine is a substance that is found in certain plants. It can also be man-made (produced synthetically) and then added to food products. It is a central nervous system stimulant and a diuretic (substance that helps rid your body of fluids).

Caffeine is absorbed and passes quickly into the brain. It does not collect in the bloodstream or get stored in the body. It leaves the body in the urine some hours after it has been consumed.

Caffeine may be used for the short-term relief of fatigue or drowsiness but there is no nutritional need for caffeine. It can be avoided in the diet.

Caffeine stimulates, or excites, the brain and nervous system. Caffeine will not reduce the effects of alcohol, although many people still believe a cup of coffee will help a person "sober-up."

Caffeine Food Sources

For caffeine content of 8,000+ common foods see: Caffeine Content of Foods and Drinks.

 

Caffeine is widely consumed. It is found naturally in the leaves, seeds, and fruits of more than 60 plants, including tea leaves, kola nuts, coffee and cocoa beans. In common foods and drinks, caffeine is in coffee, tea, chocolate, colas (unless they are labeled "caffeine-free").

Caffeine is often added to over-the-counter medications such as pain relievers, over-the-counter diet pills, and cold medicines. Caffeine has no flavor and it can be removed from a food by a chemical process called decaffeination.

Side Effects of Caffeine

Excessive consumption of caffeine can lead to: a fast heart rate, anxiety, depression, difficulty sleeping, nausea, restlessness, tremors, frequent urination and vomiting.

However, stopping caffeine abruptly may cause withdrawal symptoms, such as: drowsiness, headache, irritability, nausea and vomiting. If necessary, reduce caffeine intake gradually to prevent any symptoms of withdrawal.

In addition, large intakes of caffeine may decrease bone mass density, most likely by interfering with the body's ability to absorb calcium. This may lead to osteoporosis.

Caffeine may also cause or worsen painful, lumpy breasts (fibrocystic disease).

In particular, caffeine may have a negative effect on a child's nutrition if caffeinated drinks replace healthy drinks, such as milk. A child who consumes caffeine may also eat less, because caffeine reduces the appetite.

Recommendations

The American Medical Association Council on Scientific Affairs states that moderate tea or coffee drinking likely has no negative effect on health, as long as you live an otherwise healthy lifestyle.
Three 8 oz. cups of coffee (about 250 milligrams of caffeine) per day or 5 servings of caffeinated soft drinks or tea is considered a moderate amount of caffeine.
• Ten 8 oz. cups of coffee per day is considered excessive intake of caffeine.

Who Should Avoid Caffeine

People who may want to avoid caffeine or only drink small amounts of it include:
• People who are prone to stress, anxiety, or sleep problems
• Women with painful, lumpy breasts
• People with acid reflux or stomach ulcers
• People with high blood pressure that does not respond to treatment
• People who have problems with fast or irregular heart rhythms
• People who have chronic headaches

Caffeine and children

Carefully watch how much caffeine a child gets. Even though caffeine is safe in moderate amounts, it is a stimulant. A hyperactive child may need to avoid caffeine.

Caffeine and pregnancy

Small amounts of caffeine during pregnancy are safe, but large amounts are strongly discouraged.
• Caffeine, like alcohol, travels through your bloodstream to the placenta and can have a negative affect on your baby. Because caffeine is a stimulant, it increases your heart rate and metabolism -- both of which directly affect the baby.
• It is okay to have one or two cups of coffee, tea, or cola a week, but try to give them up completely if you can.

Caffeine and drugs

Many drugs will interact with caffeine. Talk to your health care provider or pharmacist about possible interactions with caffeine whenever you take medications.

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