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The Dangers of Caffeine Powder

The Dangers of Caffeine Powder

The tragic deaths of at least two young men have prompted the FDA to issue a warning about the use of caffeine powders. According to the FDA, caffeine powder, which is typically sold in bags, is “essentially 100 percent caffeine.” The FDA also states that “a single teaspoon of pure caffeine is roughly equivalent to the amount in 25 cups of coffee.”

Caffeine Power Sold Online

The parents of one teen who died after ingesting caffeine powder have sued both the product manufacturer and the online merchant that sold the product. Because these products are primarily sold over the Internet, they are easy for young people to purchase.
Many powdered caffeine products are also marketed as “dietary supplements,” which makes them attractive to student athletes looking to increase their energy levels. One lawsuit filed in Ohio alleges that the caffeine powder should have been labeled as an “over-the-counter stimulant” instead of a dietary supplement.

The FDA, which does not require caffeine powder to undergo any type of testing before being placed on the market, cautions that it is extremely difficult to determine a safe dosage of caffeine powder. Caffeine poisoning can cause serious and fatal heath conditions, including heart arrhythmia, seizures, disorientation, vomiting, and cardiac arrest. Because these products are not regulated, one type of powder may contain a different concentration of caffeine compared to another brand of caffeine powder.

Although the FDA has removed caffeinated products from the market before, as it did in the case of Four Loko alcoholic energy drinks in 2010, the agency has not issued a recall of caffeine powder or announced that it will limit the sale of such powders.