One death was enough to prompt the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to issue a warning on their website about the potentially deadly effects of caffeine powder, a self-proclaimed dietary supplement designed to give consumers the caffeine kick of three energy drinks in one dose.
According to reports, a full teaspoon of pure powdered caffeine can contain as many stimulants as 25 cups of coffee. That much caffeine in a human body can cause serious issues. Caffeine side effects include cardiac arrhythmia – an unsteady heartbeat – as well as seizures, vomiting, and disorientation. The correct dosage of pure caffeine is 1/16th of a teaspoon. The FDA warns that, while this amount is difficult to accurately measure in the first place, caffeine powder recipes are not regulated. That means that the correct dose of one brand may have more caffeine than the correct dose of another. They close their warning with a special caution to parents, claiming that these products are especially enticing to teens.
The FDA has taken action to restrict caffeine use for consumers before – i.e., Four Loko alcoholic energy drinks in 2010 – but has not announced any plans to limit the sale of powdered caffeine.
We urge you to be responsible when using dietary supplements, but even the correct use of some products can be dangerous. If you or a loved one were injured by an unsafe product, you may have a case.
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