Caffeine Addiction - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

5/9/05-Tyler

Caffeine Addiction

A few years ago, all John Moore could think about in the morning was getting a caffeine fix. "I would drink as much as two pots in one day," he says.

That equals about 20 cups.

"I really got to the point where I couldn't live without it," says Moore.

But his doctor said he couldn't live with it either. "My doctor told me I had to because it was affecting my heart and blood pressure, " says John.

So he gave it up, cold turkey. He suffered terrible withdrawals. "Debilitating headaches. The worse I have ever had. Pretty brutal," explains Moore.

John like many Americans was addicted to caffeine.

"Recent studies show that 80 percent of Americans drink caffeine every day," says Mandy Jefferson, a licensed nutritionist.

She says too much caffeine can cause plenty of health problems: high blood pressure, heart disease, osteoporosis. But quitting isn't easy. New research says caffeine is just as addictive as heroine or crack. So stopping abruptly could result in withdrawals.

"Some people could experience headaches, maybe even vomiting," says Jefferson. So for Java Junkies who need to quit, the key is starting slow. "It is suggested you have only about 300 milligrams a day," says Moore.

That's about three cups a day. John says he still loves coffee but has cut back. It's helped his heart and overall health.

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