Should Teenagers Drink Coffee?

Caffeine, just like cigarettes and alcohol, is an addictive drug. One cup of coffee can have five times the amount of caffeine as one soda.  Loading up on junk could have long lasting effects on a teen’s developing body.

“Caffeine is the most widely used mood-altering drug in the world,” said Professor Roland Griffiths of Johns Hopkins University.  Griffiths has found that it takes only 100 milligrams of caffeine a day to cause withdrawal symptoms.  There are 260 milligrams in a 12-ounce cup from Starbucks.

No studies have been done, for people under the age of 18.  However, the percentage of 18-24 year olds that drink coffee every day has doubled since 2003, according to the National Coffee Association.

Another problem with teens and coffee: unhealthy habits.  Drinks that have attracted young people usually have one thing in common: loads of sugar.  A 16-ounce Mocha Frappoccino from Starbucks has 380 calories.  Once a person becomes hooked, it’s hard to break loose.  Therefore, that caffeine-crazed person results in drinking a 400 calorie drink at least once a day.

With Starbucks and and a world of other coffee shops located on every corner, coffee seems hard to ignore in today’s society.  Young people should think about limiting their caffeine intake.