Are energy drinks good or bad for you?
We see them on the shelves of grocery stores, convenience stores, and maybe even liquor stores (I don’t know about that one because I don’t drink alcohol so I don’t go in them). Energy drinks, such as Red Bull, Monster, and Rockstar are popular with the public, and more especially the younger public, from teen to young adult.
The percentage of teens and young adults using energy drinks on a regular basis is approaching 50 percent.
They are popular, but are they healthy?
Most energy drinks have several ingredients in common. These are:
- Unregulated herbs
Energy drinks can have more than 15 teaspoons of sugar per drink. The recommended daily amount of sugar for a woman is 6 teaspoons, and for a man is 9 teaspoons (American Heart Association). Too much sugar can lead to nasty things like tooth decay or loss, obesity, and even Type II Diabetes.
Studies have shown that the caffeine levels listed on the labels of popular energy drinks are fairly accurate. Caffeine can have adverse effects on the body, especially over time. Dehydration is one of them. Caffeine acts as a diuretic, flushing water from the body. Energy drinks don’t hydrate – they do the opposite.
Also, caffeine can increase anxiety and stress. Even more dangerous, caffeine overuse can lead to caffeine toxicity, heart arrhythmias, and even cardiac arrest.
Symptoms of caffeine toxicity include:
- Anxiety or agitation
- Tremulousness, tingling in the extremities
- Heart palpitations
- Racing heart rate
- Chest pain
- Nausea and vomiting
- Abdominal pain
For safety, limit your caffeine intake and be sure to hydrate with plenty of water.
While vitamins are generally good for us, the vitamin content in energy drinks can vary wildly from what is listed on the label. Energy drinks are often listed as dietary supplements because they have vitamins. That’s misleading.
Vitamin intake is a good thing, but the amount you get from an energy drink probably doesn’t make up for the harmful effects of all that sugar and caffeine.
Currently, herbal content in dietary supplements (and energy drinks) are not regulated by the FDA, so any amount of any herb can be included. Stimulants are in there, because that burst of energy is what the drink is all about, but are the levels safe, and what are the side effects?
Some of these herbs can increase nervousness and blood pressure, adding stress to the heart.
Is there a safe alternative to energy drinks?
Ignite Chewable Energy is a good choice. It’s what I use. It comes in individually wrapped chewable tablets that are easy to carry, contain very little sugar, and have less than 2 calories per tablet.
They don’t have any of the chemical preservatives or defoaming agents contained in energy drinks. They don’t contain Taurine (banned in several countries).
You get a gradual energy lift and a sustained surge of energy without jitters or a crash afterwards.
If you want to learn more about this product, Click here.
Be safe in what you put in your body.
Thanks for reading, and leave a comment if you want to.