Researchers at Glasgow University have found a startling range of caffeine levels in high street coffees. Research published in the journal Food and Function 1 has found that levels of caffeine in a cup of high street bought coffee can vary by a factor of six.
Why is this important?
The greatest level of caffeine found in a single shot of espresso was 322mg and three other samples (including the University Cafe) contained greater than 200mg. This is above the daily “safe” level of 200mg set out for pregnant women by the UK Food Standards Agency 2. The average across all the coffees tested was 140mg, almost three times above the commonly quoted average of 50mg of caffeine in a cup of coffee.
So, if you’re pregnant then you may want to avoid the coffee shops and make your own (weak) coffee at home or in the office – if you’re not pregnant and like your coffee strong, head to one of the top four cafes for caffeine content in Glasgow – Pattiserie Francois, University Cafe, Cafe Cinnamon or Paperino’s, safe in the knowledge you’re getting over four times the caffeine of a supposed “average” cup!
- T. W. M. Crozier, A. Stalmach, M. E. J. Lean, A. Crozier. Espresso coffees, caffeine and chlorogenic acid intake: potential health implications, Journal of Food and Function, 2011
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