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Author Topic: how much caffeine is ok?
000
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k, kind of dorky, but does anyone have any idea how many espresso shots the average person can take before they risk giving themselves a heart attack? I need to stay up all night to write a paper... and I've got these starbucks double shot thingies.
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logic_grrl
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Well, it's pretty much impossible to drink enough coffee to actually achieve a lethal dose (although there are apparently cases of it happening with caffeine pills).

So nope, you don't have to worry about literally having a heart attack (assuming you don't have any heart problems to begin with).

However, drinking too much coffee can give you a whole fun set of symptoms including anxiety, jitteriness, rambling flow of thought/speech and irregular or speeded-up heart beat.

When those symptoms kick in depends on how much coffee you drink normally, and how acclimatized your body is. And some people find they react badly to even small amounts of caffeine.

So no-one can tell you what amount is going to be okay for you. And feeling lousy one way or another is a pretty inevitable result of pulling all-nighters to write papers (and I've been there, done that as a student).

But common sense never hurts - be extra cautious if you don't normally drink a lot of coffee, pace yourself (drink the coffee a bit at a time, instead of downing a whole lot at once), don't drink any more coffee than you think you absolutely need to stay awake, and stop drinking the coffee if you start getting any uncomfortable symptoms.

And plan to crash and make up for the missing sleep as soon as possible [Smile] .

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Gumdrop Girl
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the short answer is, the lethal dose of pure caffeine is ten grams.

there are 100 milligrams in a cup of coffee.

you can do the math from here...

but lemme tell ya, it's hard to physically tolerate high doses of caffeine. your heart pounds, you sweat, you get really anxious, your stomach and head hurt. unless you were intent on killing yourself on caffeine, the pain you'd be in would keep you from getting close to the lethal dose.

i ingested 500mg of caffeine once, and it made me feel VERY unpleasant. i'd be stupid to do that again.

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cool87
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I usually don't drink coffee. But the other day since I had to stay awake also, I did decided to drink one cup of coffee to help myself stay awake (I was a lot tired, it's been a really busy week for me) which I shouldn't have done.

The mix of the two well it made me feel really dizzy, even more when I was standing up. And it was one coffee only. I guess that's because I'm not use to drinking a lot of coffee but just be careful okay. Of course, it could make you awake but it could also have negative effects on you just like it did to me.

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Aquamarine
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The Starbucks double shots used to carry me through final exams, but I've recently developed a strong aversion to them. The first sip of that cold milky watered-down espresso is *almost* enough to activate my gag reflex. No more...

I think the generally accepted daily limit for caffeine is equivalent to the amount in three cups of coffee (300 mg). 300 mg totals about 4 shots of espresso (two of those doubleshot cans...*shudder*). Espresso has slightly less caffeine per serving size than does coffee. 300 mg is actually pretty high though, and I wouldn't see why one would take in that amount unless his/her daily life did not allow adequate rest. (Even at that point, it would be much more healthy to modify your daily schedule...)

Unfortunately, I've been there, and junior year Red Bull tasted like a lullaby to me. (Interestingly, Red Bull has less caffeine per serving size than does an 8 oz. cup of coffee.) Still, I tried to limit caffeine consumption to 200 mg on the average school day, and I stayed away from caffeine on the most part on weekends.

I wanted to add, re cool87's post, that even if you have developed tolerance for caffeine, you will probably still experience negative short-term effects, though less frequently and with diminished severity. In the long-term, caffeine dependence can lead to withdrawal headaches and other nasty conditions (you can ask my mom about these).

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Leabug
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Re: Logic_grrl's post...

"rambling flow of thought/speech"

lol maybe that explains why I don't get good grades on the essays I write all hopped up on caffiene...

[Razz]

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logic_grrl
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Could be [Big Grin] .

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Menthol
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I have one travel mug of coffee in the morning... which equals about 1.5 regular sized cups off coffee. My robot juice. I usually chase that with a bottle of water, as coffee is crap for keeping you hydrated.

Sometimes, though, that's not enough to keep me awake. So I keep one or two of those nabisco 100-calorie packs in my purse. (http://www.nabiscoworld.com/100caloriepacks/) I find that nibbling on them (biting off half a chip at a time and chewing thoughtfully) will help keep me awake at work.

Of course, if I fall asleep at work (behind the wheel) it'll be disasterous.

I also find that mintyness helps keep me awake and out of the DUH zone... a few peppermints or a spearmint lip balm helps keep me perky.

Hope this helps.

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Djuna
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As a wannabe doctor, I know that a caffeine addiction is more or less inevitable. [Smile] I'm just trying to make it as small as possible:
-only drink coffee when I need to stay awake
-general limit of 1 coffee per hard night (this was broken once when I had to work till 2am for a coursework deadline)
-absolutely DO NOT have milk or sugar (this has nothing to do with caffeine intake but it ruins a perfectly good coffee) [Wink]

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“In a strange room, before you are emptied for sleep, what are you. And when you are filled with sleep you never were. I don’t know what I am. I don’t know if I am or not... how often have I lain beneath rain on a strange roof, thinking of home.”

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000
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you consider 2am late? hah. amateur...
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Djuna
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When I have to get up at 5:30 am, yes, I consider 2am late. [Smile]

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“In a strange room, before you are emptied for sleep, what are you. And when you are filled with sleep you never were. I don’t know what I am. I don’t know if I am or not... how often have I lain beneath rain on a strange roof, thinking of home.”

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Ikeren
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I like my working theory. None.

So far, so good.

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19, male, interested in Sadomasochism (BDSM) and some bisexual tendancies.

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