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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

drowning
drowning posted in Friends:
Did something happen between you two in the past? If so, I feel like she might have some unresolved issues with you that you need to discuss with her. And, time doesn't always mean a lot. I've gotten closer to someone before compared to someone whom I had known for 8 years.
reply about 18 hours
country_girl19
country_girl19 posted in Friends:
Dear Dish-it,                          Me and my friend just started talking again, and it seems like she regrets it. She'll leave me for the people she has only known for a couple of months, when I've been friends with her for a year. Also, she gets annoyed with me, and I don't know what to do.
reply about 18 hours
drowning
drowning posted in Family Issues:
I'll be honest, I don't think that it's very fair that you're placing so much blame on your mother. Cancer is very hard to heal in any animal or person. She may of been able to help one spot, but that doesn't mean that she was going to be able to heal the rest. There's a slim chance that they could of made it through, but it's probably for the best that she put him down. Cancer is a painful thing to go through for dogs and humans alike. It would of been worse to push it. As for the depression, I understand where you're coming from with it. It's a difficult thing to go through and it makes things hard to do. I've struggled with things in the past and sometimes still do, so take my word on this: Eat. What. You. Can. Don't starve yourself. Don't binge. Don't do anything. Keep eating. Your health matters too. You need to find things to do, like hobbies (drawing, reading, writing, ect.) and spend time with friends when you can. At least talk to your friends, don't push them away. They're there for you, even when they might not know how to be. Don't be ashamed to cry, it's perfectly fine too. It's a better alternative of getting things out than a lot of things you could be doing. Do not, under any circumstances, start cutting. Take it from someone who's dealt with it on a personal level in several ways, do not start it. It is not something you "won't get addicted too" and it will not be a "one time thing." Do not try it. Do not start it. Do not try to find "softer" alternatives to cutting. Self-harm is not a fixer, it does not help anything. It isn't something to be ashamed of. It's a personal issue along with mental illness. But it is a very big deal. "And to go and kill him like that instead of getting him help?" There isn't always a place to help. Sometimes it won't do the things we wish it would.
reply 1 day
RavenClawRaina
My dog, Loki, was old and had cancer. He was 14. My mom healed one of his cancer spots but not even a month later, she put him down. He had life in him. He played like a puppy. If she healed one spot, why couldnt she heal the rest? He could have lived right? He was like my little brother, I loved him like one. He was family. Every since he passed, Ive been depressed. Losing weight and not wanting to go out and hangout with friends. Me and my mom get into fights more. At some points, I hate her for what she did. I dont dare tell anyone about my depression and I cry every night until 3:30 am. I have considered cutting but I dont want anyone to judge me. Im not going to but I just want someone to understand what his loss did to my heart. Ive had him since i was a baby. He was my best friend. And to go and kill him like that instead of getting him help? I was mad. Can anyone relate? Can someone help me? ( im not going to a therapist btw ) UGH WHAT DO I DO?!  
reply 1 day
Pokemonlegends05
Sometimes Video Games can Cheer you up as well. Happy, Vibrant Games: New Super Mario Bros. U Pokemon Shuffle Any of the Mario Party games. Minecraft Super Mario 3d world (Wow, a ton of Mario games :p) Jak and Daxter Super Mario 64 These are useful for making this :e into this  =(
reply 6 days