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Decaffeinated Coffee and Heart Palpitations

by
author image Nina K.
Nina K. is a Los Angeles-based journalist who has been published by USAToday.com, Fitday.com, Healthy Living Magazine, Organic Authority and numerous other print and web publications. She has a philosophy degree from the University of Colorado and a journalism certificate from UCLA.
Decaffeinated Coffee and Heart Palpitations
Cup of coffee with spoon Photo Credit Liv Friis-Larsen/iStock/Getty Images

The term "decaffeinated" may imply an absence of caffeine, but your cup of decaf still contains small amounts of this natural stimulant. The Permanente Group notes that just like regular coffee, large amounts of decaffeinated Joe may cause heart palpitations, as can other caffeine-laced products such as cola and tea. Although a pounding or fluttering heart is usually harmless, protect your health by visiting your doctor if you experience such palpitations. In rare cases, they may indicate a serious cardiovascular condition.

Caffeine in Decaf

In a study published in the "Journal of Analytical Toxicology" in 2006, scientists tested 10 varieties of drip-brew, decaffeinated coffee from different sellers and found that all but one sample contained between 8.6 and 13.9 milligrams of caffeine. The researchers also tested a dozen decaf espressos and coffees from one major coffee chain and found that each espresso shot contained between 3 and 15.8 milligrams of caffeine, while each 16-ounce serving of coffee contained between 12 and 13.4 milligrams. In comparison, 16 ounces of full-caffeine coffee contains about 170 milligrams of caffeine.

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