A TikToker sparked debate this week after revealing that Panera’s new “Charged Lemonades” contain nearly 400 milligrams of caffeine per large serving — roughly equivalent to the caffeine in four cups of coffee.
The viral video, which has over 1.3 million views, shows TikToker Anna Tschopp (@rosetintedgirl) holding an iced lemonade drink in a Panera Bread mug.
“This is not an ad. This is a warning. This lemonade has 400 milligrams of caffeine. 400? Are you kidding me?” TikToker says in the video. “Not only that, Panera is having a promotion right now where you can just get as much as you want for free. I don’t have enough self-control to handle that amount of caffeine. “
“Not feeling safe anymore folks,” the TikToker captioned the video.
@rosetintedgirl i don’t feel safe anymore guys #panera #chargedlemonade #panerachargedlemonade #caffeinication #caffeineaddict #caffeine #adhdcheck #adhdinwomen #adhdsquad ♬ Original sound – rosetintedgirl
Panera Bread is a bakery and coffee shop chain with over 2,000 locations across the United States and Canada. The new caffeinated Charged Lemonades – which launched earlier this year and are currently available in 36 locations – are available in mango yuzu, apple-cranberry and strawberry-lemon-mint flavors, according to Panera Bread’s website.
On average, a large 30-ounce serving contains 388 milligrams of caffeine, which works out to nearly 13 milligrams per ounce. For comparison, a Monster Energy Drink only has 10 milligrams of caffeine per ounce.
The United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recommends a limit of 400 milligrams of caffeine per day, which is nearly the equivalent of 4-5 cups of coffee — or a large serving of charged lemonade.
In addition to the high caffeine content, the drinks also contain an average of 107 grams of sugar per large drink. For reference, the American Heart Association recommends an intake of just 25 to 36 grams of sugar per day.
The release of the sodas came just before Panera Bread announced in April that it would be offering an unlimited beverage service for just $10.99 a month, with a short-term promotion offering free subscriptions through July.
Tschopp told the Daily Dot that as a student she was happy to see the free offer for a few months of unlimited drink service. However, she was shocked by the caffeine content of the sodas and shortly after by the response she received on TikTok.
“There was an alarming number of pregnant women who commented on my TikTok and said they drank it or drank it and they wouldn’t have known about the high caffeine content if they hadn’t seen my video,” Tschopp said.
The viral TikTok sparked debate in its comments section about the new soda’s high caffeine and sugar concentration.
“100mg SUGAR!!!! It’s so dangerous. I couldn’t sleep for 2 days,” lamented one TikToker.
“I had THREE of the 20z and didn’t know how much caffeine was in it until it was too late,” shared another user.
Some users who claimed to be Panera Bread employees also shared their experiences with the new drink.
“I work at Panera and we all shoot it to stay awake during our shifts. I’m warning as many customers as possible,” noted one user.
Many users thanked TikToker for sharing the information.
“I am extremely sensitive to caffeine. That would make me crack up and probably send me to the hospital. thanks for this psa,” praised one user.
In February, users on Reddit complained about the new Charged Lemonades and how the release might affect children.
“A moment of silence for any parents whose kids want to try ‘the new flavored sodas,’ and for all those poor coffee shop employees who have to take care of both the kids and their parents,” said a Redditor credited.
While the FDA does not currently issue guidelines for children’s caffeine consumption, some pediatricians have advised against caffeine intake for children under the age of 12 and consumption of energy drinks for children and adolescents of all ages, according to the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry.
Other Redditors disagreed with the lack of warnings about the new soda’s high caffeine content.
“While the current signage lists the caffeine content, it doesn’t draw enough attention to it so it’s easy to miss when filling your cup at the bubblers,” described another user.
Too much caffeine can cause insomnia, anxiety, increased heart rate, nausea, mood swings, and headaches. In addition to children and adolescents, people with certain medical conditions may be more sensitive to the negative effects of caffeine, according to the FDA.
The Panera Bread press team did not respond to the Daily Dot’s email request for comment.
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*Initial publication: May 11, 2022 3:13 pm CDT
Grace Stanley is a reporter covering creators and influencers. You were previously the social media manager for Nautilus Magazine and attended the University of Texas at Austin.
https://www.dailydot.com/irl/panera-charged-lemonades-tiktok/ TikToker warns viewers about high caffeine content in Panera’s supercharged sodas