Coffee & Health

ISIC welcomes EFSA scientific opinion on safety of caffeine

May 27, 2015

The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) today published its final Scientific Opinion on the safety of caffeine. ISIC welcomes this opinion, which supports our own position on the science behind coffee, caffeine and health.

EFSA concludes that single doses of caffeine up to 200mg and daily intakes of up to 400mg do not raise safety concerns for adults in Europe. This conclusion does not represent a recommended upper limit for caffeine consumption; it confirms that moderate caffeine consumption, of around 400 mg caffeine or the equivalent of up to 5 cups of coffee per day, can be enjoyed as part of a healthy balanced diet and an active lifestyle.

Other findings include:

  • Single doses of caffeine up to 200mg are considered safe for adults (18-65 years) also when consumed less than two hours before intense exercise.
  • For pregnant women, caffeine intakes of up to 200mg a day are considered safe for the foetus.
  • Daily intakes of up to 200mg consumed by lactating women in the general population are considered safe for the breastfed infant.
  • Single doses of 100mg may increase sleep latency (the amount of time it takes to fall asleep) and shorten sleeping time in some adults, particularly when consumed close to bedtime.

Coffee, caffeine and health

Coffee is enjoyed by millions of people around the world and its components have been extensively researched. Taken overall, the research indicates that caffeinated coffee consumed in moderation (typically 3-5 cups per day) has positive effects on both mental performance and physical endurance performance. The body of scientific research also suggests that moderate lifelong coffee consumption may reduce the risk of neurodegenerative conditions (such as age-related cognitive decline, Alzheimer’s Disease and Parkinson’s Disease), type 2 diabetes and a range of liver diseases (such as liver fibrosis, cirrhosis, fatty liver disease and Hepatitis-C).

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