The sound of tiny fingers cracking open Pepsi cans could be heard round the world when a recent study revealed no conclusive link between caffeinated beverages and bedwetting.
Two hundred children were included in the survey, 75 percent of whom admitted to drinking caffeine. The 5- to 7-year-olds reported guzzling one can a day, while those 8 to 12 say they knock back nearly three times that amount. And while caffeine is a diuretic, there was no indication that bedwetting among soda drinkers was exacerbated compared to kids who abstain from caffeine.
But the reality is, researchers admit the general affects of caffeine on young children are actually unknown because studies of its affects are most commonly done with teens. However, what medical experts do know is that caffeine is a stimulant and can cause physiological and psychological affects in teens and adults. What does that say for what it does in even smaller bodies?
Plus, the findings in the study from the Journal of Pediatrics are preliminary, and doctors say children with bedwetting problems should limit their caffeine intake, or cut back as the day wears on.
What I want to know is if anyone else besides me is simply wondering why such young kids are drinking soda in the first place? And before you give me the, “Well, fresh juices are expensive and not everyone can afford milk and maybe it’s cultural and don’t judge what others feed their children,” sounding cry, may I remind you that water is free? And unless you live in that town for which Julia Roberts fought and walked around with her boobs hanging out in Erin Brokovich, give me one good reason why kids can’t just drink water straight from the tap instead of soda.
I thought it was creepy enough when years back I started seeing elementary and middle school students in Starbucks drinking froufrou frothy designer coffee drinks, but that almost seems less harmful than kindergartners chugging Coke (not that whipped cream and caramel are any more or less healthy, but it just seems a little less icky to me to drink a peppermint mocha than a Mountain Dew). Besides, if your kids are young enough to have a bedwetting problem, are they really old enough to drink soda? Isn’t caffeine something — like watching The Simpsons or the hearing the story of Lindsay Lohan’s life — that should only be allowed when you’re at least old enough to vote?
Is it okay to let little kids drink any soda?
Image: Wikimedia Commons