(HOUSTON) — An Ohio teenager died after consuming pure, powered caffeine he bought online, and now the FDA is warning people that too much caffeine can kill you.
UTHealth Medical School Sports Cardiologist Dr. John Higgins agrees, and he’s particularly concerned about the powdered caffeine linked to this young man’s death.
“One teaspoon of this pure caffeine is equivalent to about 25 cups of coffee,” Higgins said. “Just one cup of coffee can cause them to get the jitters, so imagine 25 cups of coffee all at once.”
And this stuff is not regulated.
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“As long as you’ve got a credit card, you can order it,” Higgins said. “There’s no medical check. This is a recipe for disaster, and I think — unless we do something about it, unfortunately — I think we may have more severe reaction coming down the line.”
He said the Ohio case is evidence this stuff can kill; but even in smaller doses, caffeine can harm people in all kinds of ways.
“It can effect things like blood pressure; it can effect their heart rate; it can effect their ability to think,” Higgins said.
The FDA is considering taking regulatory action following the death of the 18-year-old in Ohio, and Higgins supports some sort of regulation of all caffeine products.