How Much Caffeine is Too Much for Your Health?

August 21, 2014

How Much Is Too Much

Most of us consume caffeine in some way, shape, or form. As truckers, it is fairly common to partake of caffeinated beverages as a means of alleviating fatigue and staying alert and focused through many a long, rough haul. But how much is too much?

Safe caffeine consumption

According to the Mayo Clinic, 400 milligrams of caffeine per day appears safe for most healthy adults, however people who don't regularly consume caffeine may be more sensitive and react to smaller amounts. About how much is 400 mg?

  • 4 cups of coffee or
  • 10 cans of cola or
  • 2 energy drinks

Signs you've had too much

Are you fueling-up on more than 500-600 mg of caffeine per day? Excess caffeine can cause:

  • An afternoon slump.
  • Dark or orange urine, a sign of dehydration.
  • Difficulty falling asleep (it takes you more than 30 minutes).
  • Feelings of anxiety or restlessness.
  • Frequent symptoms of:
    • Insomnia
    • Nervousness
    • Restlessness
    • Irritability
    • Stomach upset
    • Frequent heartburn
    • Fast heartbeat
    • Muscle tremors

Some medicines and supplements can prolong the effects of caffeine:

  • Antibiotics: Ciprofloxacin (Cipro) and norfloxacin (Noroxin)
  • Bronchodilators: Theophylline (Theo-24, Elixophyllin, others)
  • Echinacea

Need to curb your caffeine habit?

  • Calculate
    • Pay attention to how much caffeine you are consuming each day.
  • Cut back gradually
    • Drink or consume one item fewer each day, or avoid consuming caffeine later in the day to help your body get used to lower caffeine levels without side effects or withdrawal.
  • Switch to decaf
    • Most decaf beverages are taste similar to their caffeinated counterparts. Teas brewed for shorter time periods also reduce caffeine content. Herbal teas don't contain any.

Beware hidden sources of caffeine when calculating your daily total:

  • Excedrin, 130 mg
  • Vital Energy water, 150 mg
  • Snapple, 42 mg
  • Barq's Root Beer, 20 mg
  • Hershey's chocolate bar, 12 mg
  • Dannon Coffee Yogurt, 45 mg

Looking for more tips to keep your going? Visit, your online truck superstore.

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