Verify: Can you die from drinking too much caffeine?

Verify: Can you die from drinking too much caffeine?

A coroner confirmed that a 16-year-old boy died from drinking too much caffeine.

Officials said he had a large diet Mountain Dew, a latte and an energy drinking in two hours. They said that led to a probable arrhythmia.

So can having too much caffeine actually kill you? The Caffeine Informer is a site that is dedicated to educating people about caffeine. It says adults can safely consume between 300 to 400 milligrams of caffeine a day, which is about one venti Starbucks coffee. But for teens 13 to 18-years-old, they should drink no more than 100 milligrams.

The Richland County, South Carolina Coroner reported the teenager drank a large diet Mountain Dew, a cafe latte and an energy drink. So we tallied up how much caffeine he may have consumed. The Center for Science in the Public Interest said there is about 91 milligrams of caffeine in a 20 ounce diet or regular Mountain Dew.  According to Starbucks, a 12 ounce cafe latte has 75 milligrams of caffeine. The Caffeine Informer said a 16 ounce Monster energy drink has 160 milligrams of caffeine. All together that's about 330 milligrams of caffeine, assuming these were the sized drinks he drank.

KREM 2 cannot confirm is the South Carolina teen had a pre-existing heart condition, but he did die from a "caffeine-induced cardiac event causing a probable arrhythmia." The Caffeine Informer said caffeine has not been proven to cause arrhythmia or other heart-related problems. But recommends those with heart conditions to limit caffeine intake to no more than 200 milligrams daily.

So can you die from ingesting too much caffeine? USA Today asked the same question of Robert Glatter, an emergency physician in New York City. He said, "It would likely take anywhere from 50-100 cups of coffee to result in a lethal dose of caffeine." Which equates to about 4,000 to 9,000 milligrams of caffeine.

Verify: Sources

  • The Center for Science in the Public Interest

  • Starbucks

  • Caffeine Informer

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