Caffeine Awareness Alliance Supports Warning Labels Proposal

Released on: December 15, 2007, 5:10 am

Press Release Author: Caffeine Awareness Alliance

Industry: Healthcare

Press Release Summary: State of California considering adding warning labels to
caffeinated products

Press Release Body: (New York, NY) A controversial proposal could require
manufacturers to add warning labels to products with caffeine. This would apply only
to products with added caffeine like sodas, energy drinks, diuretics and stay-awake
drugs. Coffee, tea and chocolate would be exempt.

The California law that passed in 1986, called Proposition 65, requires that
products containing toxins linked to cause cancer or reproductive harm should be
properly labeled. Caffeine consumption by pregnant women is associated increased
fetal breathing activity and behavior, increased breech births, increased tremors
and irregular heartbeat in new born babies.

Caffeine was first discovered to be of potential harm to pregnant women by the US
Food and Drug Administration in 1980. It was found that caffeine crosses the
plancental and blood brain barrier and it is thought that the fetus may not have the
enzymes necessary to detoxify itself of caffeine through a process known as
demethylation. Some scientists have also tried to determine how caffeine interferes
with fetal cell growth and development. Evidence shows that caffeine can produce
chromosomal aberrations in human cells but this is the subject of ongoing debate.

Caffeine consumption, when combined with diseases such as diabetes, can compound the
risks to the fetus. One study found that the more caffeine a pregnant woman with
diabetes consumes during the first trimester of her pregnancy, the less likely her
body is to release enzymes that signal maintenance of the pregnancy. This can be
seen as an indication of the impending loss of the pregnancy and implies that over
time, caffeine has negative effects on pregnancy.

"My organization supports this proposal because it allows consumers to make informed
choices" says Marina Kushner, founder of the Caffeine Awareness Alliance. "However I
feel that warning labels should apply to coffee and tea products as well. A
Starbucks 20 ounce coffee contains 415 mg of caffeine. With as little as 200 mg of
caffeine, you can experience typical addictive symptoms such as irritability,
restlessness, tension, insomnia, excitement, and gastrointestinal disturbance. If
you ingest more than 1 gram (1000 mg), you can experience irregular heartbeats,
panic and anxiety disorders, muscle twitching, incoherent speech, excessive
urination, flushed skin, and depression. And, believe it or not, when you take over
5 grams of caffeine, the results can be fatal." said Kushner

Kushner strives to educate through her book, \"The Truth About Caffeine -- How
Companies That Promote It Deceive Us and What We Can Do About It.\" The book has been
described by critics as a \"wake-up call\" about caffeine and reveals \"frightening
evidence\" of the damage caffeine can cause. The book reveals many serious physical
and psychological effects of caffeine and the damaging effects on the public.

To learn more about Kushner\'s book, or National Caffeine Awareness Month, you can

Caffeine Awareness Alliance
PO Box 96503
Washington, DC 20090
Tel: 815-572-8007


Giannelli, M., Doyle, P., Roman E., Pelerin M., and Hermon C. \"The effect of
caffeine consumption and nausea on the risk of miscarriage.\" Paediatric and
Perinatal Epidemiology 17.2003:316-323.

Khoury, J.C., Miodovnik M., Buncher, C.R., Kalkwafr, H., McElvy S., Khoury P.R., and
Sibai, B. \"Consequences of smoking and caffeine consumption during pregnancy in
women with type 1 diabetes.\" The Journal of Maternal-Fetal and Neonatal Medicine
15.2004: 44-50.

Rasch, V. \"Cigarettes, alchohol and caffeine consumption.\" Acta Obstetrica
Gynecologica Scandinavia 82.2003:182-188.


Web Site:

Contact Details: Caffeine Awareness Alliance
PO Box 96503
Washington, DC 20090
Tel: 815-572-8007

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