Monday, January 23, 2006

Monster Overdose

Caffeine fascinates me. Mostly because it's the only drug I've ever been addicted to in my life. The rumors of my being a crack fiend are totally bogus... seriously. Researching about caffeine, about caffeine addiction, about caffeine withdrawl, and every associated with it has been a small past time that I would endulge in when bored at work and I still wanted to make it look like I was doing something work related as opposed to some of our interns who did nothing but play flash games and goof around with google earth.

The other day, I ran across this FAQ for caffeine as linked to from Digg. I knew most of the information before reading, but there were a few things I didn't know, like the fact that 10 grams is the LD_50 dosage. I also didn't know that caffeine is regulated in the United States for beverages. No beverage can contain more than 6 mg of caffeine per ounce. Those two facts, combined with the knowledge that your average second generation energy drink comes in 16 oz cans, I was able to come up with a neat little fact all my own.

Let's assume that your average modern energy drink contains the maximum 6 mg of caffeine per ounce of liquid. So in a 16 ounce Monster or MDX or Rock Star or whatever there would be 96 mg of caffeine. That's a pretty decent amount of caffeine. And think of the buzz you would get from drinking a few Monsters in sitting! You'd be so wired! Your heart must be close to exploding, right?

Well, not really. When you calculate out how many Monsters you would have to drink to reach a lethal dosage of caffeine, you would need to take down 104 cans. I'm pretty sure if you drank 104 cans of Monster you'd die of many, many other causes before caffeine overdose.

So next time you start wondering if you should drink that fifth Red Bull while writing a paper during an all-nighter or when you're putting in that marathon weekend session of World of Warcraft, just remember you'd have to drink almost 100 more to kill you so just go for it! The jitters will pass eventually.

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