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Kids & Coffee

You may think of coffee as being an adult-only drink, but lots of kids may start drinking it or want to try it at an early age. The question is, is coffee good for kids? How old should you be if you want to try or start drinking coffee?

A Cup Of History

For a long time, people thought coffee wasn’t healthy – at least for those who drink a lot of it. Some say coffee can make you nervous and anxious, and many regular drinkers would agree.

In medieval times coffee was considered a drug, and early coffee shops were pretty much illegal across Europe.

Today, with other coffee shops sprouting up at pretty much every city corner, things have changed quite a bit. But would anyone have expected scientists and researchers to find out coffee may actually be good for your health? And what about kids? Should they be drinking coffee (for health reasons), too?

Coffee CupCoffee Cup
 

The Science of Coffee

A recent study by Harvard researchers suggested that those who drank something like six cups of coffee a day had a much reduced risk of developing diabetes compared to those who consumed no coffee each day.

Coffee may also reduce the risk for Parkinson’s disease, liver cirrhosis, colon cancer, gallstones, and Alzheimer’s disease (for long-term coffee drinkers). But, at the same time, it may INCREASE the risk of heart disease.

Coffee is such a complex brew of chemicals, many of which are created and brought out in the process of roasting and brewing coffee, that research on the health benefits and risks really need a lot more work before any proven results will be found.

Is Coffee Good for Kids?

According to one researcher – Dr. Tomas DePaulis – many parents who keep their kids as far away from coffee as possible could be wrong. He says coffee isn’t that bad for kids and, like in adults, it can help improve concentration and may help children do a little better on tests for this reason.

In an interesting finding from Brazil, kids who drink coffee with milk are less likely to have depression than other children.

Coffee BeansCoffee Beans
 

Caffeine: The Bad & The Ugly

Unfortunately, there are negative effects of drinking coffee, most of which are associated with drinking large amounts of it. For some people, especially kids, even 1 cup of coffee could have negative effects.

First of all, it’s all-important to remember that coffee contains a lot of caffeine. And, as a kid, there’s a good chance you’re already consuming other products that have caffeine in them, like soft drinks and chocolate. If you add coffee to the mix, you could be consuming way too caffeine on a daily basis.

The National Institute of Health says even though caffeine is safe to consume in moderation, it may have a negative effect on your overall health and nutrition. Caffeinated drinks may be replacing better-for-you foods like milk, and you may not be eating the right amount of food per day because caffeine affects your appetite.

In fact, the National Institute of Health says caffeine can be completely restricted in a child’s diet since there is no nutritional requirement for it.

Caffeine can also increase or be bad for heart problems or nervous disorders, and can produce symptoms like jitters, irritability and hyperactivity. Because it’s considered addictive, caffeine can cause restlessness for those who are hooked and miss their daily dose. There may also be some short-term side effects to consuming caffeine, like heartburn, headaches, stomach problems and high blood pressure.

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How Much Coffee Do You Drink?

  • 1-2 cups a day.
  • 3-4 cups a day.
  • More than five cups a day.
  • None - I hate the bitter taste of coffee.

Dear Dish-It In The Forums

Kirsteeeeen
Kirsteeeeen posted in Friends:
I hope you don't mind that I moved this to friends, but I thought it'd be more fitting since your question seems mainly friendship based. :) Do you mind being younger than your classmates? Do you feel it inhibits your school experience? I think you should do what feels best to you, whether that be staying behind because friendship has a big impact, or continuing ahead if you prioritize academic growth. Only you know what's right for you. :p If it's any help, I left high school early and went to college. I was already used to being the youngest in my class so it wasn't a huge jump socially, and I found a lot of friends of all ages. :D With that being said, I do still miss being with people my age but it's too late to go back and I wouldn't trade my experience for the world.
reply about 13 hours
YassenGregorovich
I'm 13 and will be going on to 9th grade. I skipped kindergarted  :p and 5th grade. So I'm a lot younger then most of my classmates will be. I'm thinking of repeating 8th grade so I will be more of the same age as the other people in my class. But I'm not sure if I should because I got a B+ or A- average in 8th grade. I need some advice on this. Sorry if this is the wrong section for this I just thought general was the right place. Thanks!  :D
reply 1 day
aftershock
aftershock posted in Style:
Thanks all of you guys for your responses. It seems many of you don't share pics to get help from friends when you're choosing. Thats OK. If anyone does want to go on the VIP list to be the first to try the new app then feel free to complete the info form here: http://goo.gl/forms/FOiKWa4DoAQHxtOx1 
reply 1 day
CoolerThanMyself
I'm a 12 year old girl with really strict parents! I do chores( even handling BLEACH sometimes) , I take care of my little brother, I'm in top set for all my classes- even on the gifted and talented register and I've only ever had 1 detention- and that was their fault anyway bc I was late( they drive). But, I'm still NEVER allowed out with my friends! My friends are all in top sets as well, are well behaved and all we literally would do is window shopping. I mean, there are my age smoking shisha and doing #####- they should be lucky I'm not a delinquent! But my parents always say I can't hang out. Not because they're worried about my safety, they just dont want me to go out.! Even sleepovers, my parents always say no because they ' haven't met the parents" but they make NO effort to do so. I'm losing out on knowing my friends better and whilst they're all making best friends, at school I'm just the person in the background- the left out friend. It hurts and most of the time I wish I was fostered or something. How can I make them loosen up? ( don't say anything about sneaking out because I chose life)
reply 3 days
Corps
Corps posted in Style:
Thank You Mate :)
reply 3 days