Caffeine is probably the most widely used stimulant in the world. It is consumed in all forms, from coffee and tea to energy drinks and pills. While caffeine is often consumed for its benefits, such as increased alertness and improved mood, excessive intake can lead to unpleasant symptoms and, in extreme cases, negative health outcomes. This begs the question: how much caffeine is too much?

The answer to this question varies depending on the individual. Caffeine tolerance varies greatly from person to person, with some individuals able to tolerate more than others. Generally, however, experts recommend that adults aim for no more than 400 milligrams (mg) of caffeine per day. This is roughly the amount found in four cups of coffee or 10 cans of soda.

Consuming more than this amount can lead to negative side effects such as anxiety, jitters, rapid heart rate, and trouble sleeping. Additionally, some studies have linked excessive caffeine consumption to an increased risk of heart disease, high blood pressure, and osteoporosis. Pregnant women and individuals with certain medical conditions such as anxiety disorders or heart conditions should be particularly cautious about their caffeine intake.

It’s also worth noting that caffeine content can vary greatly depending on the product. For example, a typical 8-ounce cup of coffee contains around 95 mg of caffeine, while a 16-ounce energy drink can contain up to 240 mg. Additionally, some companies may not disclose the caffeine content of their products, making it difficult to accurately track intake.

So how can you tell if you’re consuming too much caffeine? Pay attention to your body. If you’re experiencing frequent headaches, trouble sleeping, or an increased heart rate, it may be a sign that you need to cut back on your caffeine intake. Keep in mind that it can take up to 24 hours for caffeine to completely leave your system, so it may be helpful to gradually decrease your intake rather than going cold turkey.

While caffeine can provide many benefits, it’s important to consume it in moderation. For most adults, a maximum of 400 mg per day is recommended. Paying attention to your body and gradually reducing intake if necessary can help you determine the amount that works best for you. Finally, remember that not all caffeinated products are created equal, so it’s important to always be aware of the caffeine content of what you’re consuming.