A MUM feeds her 14-month-old baby three bottles of coffee a DAY in Indonesia – because she can’t afford milk.
The little girl is reportedly thriving, although her mother admits she’s so addicted to caffeine that she “won’t sleep if she doesn’t have coffee”.
Kompas says that the baby, Hadijah Haura, is a “super active child”, who happily walks by herself in the village of Tonro Lima, West Sulawesi.
She became hooked on coffee from the age of six months because her parents, Sarifuddin and Anita, must live on a meagrely daily income of just 20,000 Indonesian Rupiah – the equivalent of £1.13.
Anita told the publication that her husband’s copra peeling (processing coconuts) job “is not enough to buy milk”.
Adding that she “doesn’t want to worry about it”, the mum said her baby “usually whines for coffee before going to sleep”.
Kompas said that the baby’s physical growth appeared to be similar to “any other normal child” of a similar age.
The NHS advises “tea and coffee aren’t suitable for babies or young children. If sugar is added, this can lead to tooth decay”.
Too much caffeine can cause a faster heart rate, higher blood pressure and an upset stomach.
News website Coconuts explains that people living in poverty in Indonesia – like Anita and Sarifudden – consider milk to be an “unattainable luxury”.
It explained that the baby was drinking “kopi tubruk”, which is a “simple and cheap Indonesian-style coffee prepared by boiling coarse coffee grounds along with sugar”.
A spokesman for the Polman Community Health said officials have visited the family, and have given the little girl biscuits and milk.
They told the baby’s parents not to feed her any more coffee, as “over time there will be an effect, because it contains caffeine and lots of sugar”.
Dangers of caffeine for babies
Coffee contains caffeine, a natural stimulant which is also found in tea and chocolate.
The Kids Health website explains that caffeine is defined as a drug as it stimulates the nervous system.
Too much caffeine can cause:
- difficulty concentrating
- trouble sleeping
- faster heart rate
- higher blood pressure
- jitters and nervousness
The website adds that “especially in young kids, it doesn’t take a lot of caffeine to produce these effects”.
The NHS recommends tea and coffee shouldn’t be given to babies or young children as they’re “not suitable”.
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