At historical highs, the debate as how much caffeine is too much

Tuesday, 5 April, 2011

While many of us probably don’t give that much thought to caffeine consumption throughout the day – whether through coffee, tea, or soft drinks – the debate as to what constitutes a “safe” level of intake has been raging for near on a century.

Hollingworth compiled his studies in a 1912 book that used a contemporary spelling for the substance: “The Influence of Caffein on Mental and Motor Efficiency.” An editorial in The Journal of the American Medical Association that year welcomed the research: “It is gratifying to have the effects on the human system of a drug like caffeine so investigated by rigorous scientific tests at the hands of capable investigators; only in this way will there be provided an adequate basis for correct conclusions as to the possible dangers of the use of caffeine-containing beverages.”

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