As many as 75 percent of American children consume caffeine daily, which is leading to sleep problems among the biggest consumers of caffeine, a study published Thursday in the Journal of Pediatrics found.
The research, carried out by doctors at the University of Nebraska Medical Center, found that children between eight and 12 consume an average of 109 milligrams of caffeine a day, which is the equivalent of about three cans of caffeinated soda.
Children as young as five are consuming the equivalent of a can of caffeinated soda daily.
Lead researcher, William Warzak, said the intake of caffeine appears to interfere with children’s sleep, with sleep disruptions increasing as kids consume more caffeine.
“Parents need to be more careful in monitoring what their children eat and drink,” said Warzak. “Children don’t need to be drinking caffeine.”
Pediatricians, he wrote, could play a critical role in helping parents understand the harmful effects of allowing their kids to consume caffeine.