sábado, 4 de abril de 2009

A cafeína das novas gerações

Li o estudo que coloco abaixo e que achei de extrema importância partilhar!
Costumamos dizer que as crianças não devem consumir cafeína, até já ouvi profissionais de saúde dizerem que quando uma criança lhes diz que bebe chá (preto ou verde) ficam imediatamente atentos!

Agora a cafeína como todos sabemos está escondida numa série de bebidas, como as colas, as bebidas energéticas,...

Boa leitura de artigo, espero que chame à atenção...

Should caffeine be consumed by children?

With the increased popularity of coffee shops, a new generation of caffeine consumers was born. Children are being exposed to caffeine from soft drinks, coffee, tea, energy drinks, ice cream, caffeinated water, chocolate, and medications on a daily basis. Could this trend be harming children?

The Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI), a consumer advocacy group, wants the FDA to require labels on caffeine-containing products that list the number of grams of caffeine they contain along with the warning that caffeine is a mild stimulant and not appropriate for children. A great deal of the problem with caffeine is the fact that caffeinated soft drinks often replace more nutritious drinks like milk. The trend is that milk consumption clearly shows a decline over time, while soft drink consumption has risen. Vending machines were added to some schools which exposed children of all ages to soft drinks.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's School Health Policies and Programs Study (SHPPS) 2000 survey concluded that 43% of elementary schools, 89.4% of middle/junior high, and 98.2% of senior high schools had either a vending machine or a school store, canteen, or snack bar where students could purchase foods or beverages. A study done by CSPI found that of the drinks sold in the 13,650 vending-machine slots surveyed, 70% were sugary drinks such as soda, juice drinks with less than 50% juice, iced tea, and "sports" drinks. Of the sodas, only 14% were diet, and only 12% of the drinks available were water. Just 5% of drink options were milk but of those, most (57%) were high-fat, whole, or 2% milk. Fortunately, this problem has gained a great deal of recognition and some states have now enacted legislation to replace existing food and drinks of minimal nutritional value for healthier options or to restrict student access to the machines.

The effect of caffeine on children's moods and behavior is another concern. In a study done by the National Institute of Mental Health, 8- to 13-year-olds who regularly consumed high doses of caffeine were judged to be more restless by teachers, and one-third were hyperactive enough to meet the criteria for attention deficit disorder with hyperactivity (ADHD). A Stanford study of fifth- and sixth-graders deprived of daily caffeine reported having symptoms including trouble thinking clearly, not feeling energetic, and getting angry. These symptoms were even reported by children who typically consume 28 mg of caffeine a day. The research in this area is somewhat limited, but the studies that have been conducted are compelling enough to warrant restricting caffeine intake in children to as little as possible. If there is no need for caffeine, why take the risk and allow children to consume it?

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