Red Bull, Rockstar, Full Throttle, and Monster, all commonly popular energy drinks among kids from the age of 11 or 12 to young adults. Athletes drink them before games, college students down them to stay awake in class and many just drink them because they are “hip” without thinking twice about what is inside. How bad are the ingredients in these drinks for us really? Three researchers from the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston and the University of Queensland in Australia decided to investigate.
Their research led to findings concerned with long-term use. Problems could occur with increased blood pressure, heart rate, and effects on brain function. Diabetes is another risk associated with the intake of energy beverages. There can be up to 13 tsp. of sugar in every 16 oz. can. Too much sugar also leads to weight gain and an increased intake of a person’s daily number of calories.
The research goes on to say that manufacturers of these products have been able to get away with labeling an energy drink a “dietary supplement.” This label allows such companies to forego operating under federal regulations that govern sodas and other sugary beverages. Under a label such as “dietary supplement,” Energy drink companies can advertise their products as “calorie burners” or “increases athletic performance.”
Though most companies voluntarily put warnings on their cans along with caffeine content information, most consumers overlook this warning, or possibly see it as nothing more than an energy-increasing supplement that will enable them to burn more calories and lose weight. Not the case.
From research and information that I have read about energy drinks, there is nothing good about them. Especially when mixed with alcohol, which then has the effect to purge the feeling of inebriation, which fools people who drink such beverages into thinking they aren’t even drunk and leading to accidents and injuries.
The consumption of energy drinks is nothing more than really good marketing techniques. Consumers have been blind to the reality of the dangers of their ingredients and high-caffeine contents. Caffeine is a drug after all. More should be done to make the public aware of what they are consuming, such as the surgeon general’s warning on tobacco products. Tobacco consumers are aware of what is going into their bodies, yet it is their choice to consume so. There are a lot of health risks associated with energy drinks that consumers have a right to know about.
I mean think about it, some of the ingredients in these drinks have not even been researched, not to mention they are being combined into one beverage. In effect, energy drinks are a mere contradiction that is generally followed by crashes and feelings of sluggishness. From research I have done on caffeine, I have learned that caffeine dehydrates the body. For every one cup of coffee a person drinks, they would need to drink two cups of water to make up for it. Dehydration leaves the body feeling slack and tiresome. After consuming energy drinks a person would need to drink water to compensate anyway, so why not just keep your body feeling hydrated and energized by drinking up to 64 oz. of water a day. Instead of consuming unnecessary calories and sugar, and putting your body at risk for illness and disease, just drink water, it is cheaper and healthier.