Janis Hunter,
Home & Garden Information Center

People have enjoyed caffeinated beverages since ancient times. Caffeine is a mild central nervous system stimulant that provides the safe kick that some people need to get started. It can help to fight fatigue, boost physical endurance, and enhance mental abilities and mood.

Coffee is the most popular item consumed at breakfast in the United States. It is the main dietary source of caffeine for adults, followed by soft drinks, tea and chocolate. Soft drinks are the primary source of caffeine for children ages 2 to 17 and have overtaken tea as the second source of caffeine for young and middle-age adults.

Read product labels and be aware of caffeine’s numerous sources. It is also found in: non-cola soft drinks, like root beer and orange soda; chocolate and coffee-flavored candy; caffeinated water; many over-the-counter and prescription drugs; a growing number of foods; and “energy drinks,” which typically contain about 80 mg of caffeine. The amount of caffeine in food products varies depending on serving size, type of product and method of preparation.

Refer to HGIC 4152, Caffeine to find out how many milligrams of caffeine are found in specific foods and beverages, whether caffeine affects health and the symptoms of caffeine sensitivity.

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This information is supplied with the understanding that no discrimination is intended and no endorsement by the Clemson University Cooperative Extension Service is implied. All recommendations are for South Carolina conditions and may not apply to other areas. Use pesticides only according to the directions on the label. All recommendations for pesticide use are for South Carolina only and were legal at the time of publication, but the status of registration and use patterns are subject to change by action of state and federal regulatory agencies. Follow all directions, precautions and restrictions that are listed.