Go to any local gas station or corner store, and you are sure to see an endless amount of energy drink options. Some claim to keep you up for 5 hours! Some claim 6! They come in all sorts of colors and flavors and are promoted by various spokesmen and women. However, anyone who actually takes a look at the ingredients in one of these concoctions would probably feel like they were reading a different language. That is because most of the ingredients in these beverages are man made chemicals.
Energy Drinks Side Effects
Currently, not much is known about the long-term effects of energy drink consumption. However, that is not deterring millions of young people around the world from ditching their cups of coffee for these energy drinks. Potential problems could include liver or cardiovascular disease, diabetes, insulin resistance, and other serious consequences. Yet, since they have been on the market for such a relatively short period of time, not enough is known to accurately warn people. One of the ways that energy drink companies have been able to avoid strict regulation by the FDA is by labeling their products as “dietary supplements”. This absolves the companies from having to adhere to the same regulations as soda and juice companies.
Another problem with this new crop of beverage is that anyone, of any age, can buy them. It is not uncommon for a kid as young as 11 or 12 to walk into a store and come out with a 24oz Red Bull. They see their favorite celebrities on television drinking them, so why shouldn’t they? An alarming trend in the energy drink market is the obvious, subversive marketing that is directed at young people. They are promoting their “supplements” as the cool, hip alternative to coffee or other, natural energy solutions. Who knows what kind of unknown consequences will befall an entirely new generation that drinks nothing but energy drinks their entire adolescence?
One of the most worrisome trends involving energy drinks is how they are being combined by young people with alcohol. Talk to any bartender and ask them what some of the most popular pours are. Most of them will probably tell you that Vodka and Red Bulls are taking over as the drink of choice for young party-goers. While mixing a stimulant with a depressant may seem like a bad idea to a sober, cognizant individual, to young people it sounds like the ultimate cocktail. There have been thousands of people who have experienced alcohol poisoning as a result of drinking alcohol mixed with energy drinks. One of the reasons this happens to frequently is due to the fact that the energy drink seems to dull the full effects of inebriation. This leads people to believe that they are not as drunk as they actually are, causing them to make poor decisions like driving or continuing to consume more drinks.
As the old saying goes, “if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.” This can easily be applied to energy drinks. While they promise to give you a jolt of productivity, or even “wings”, what they are actually doing is severely altering the way your body is supposed to function. There have not yet been conclusive studies to determine if it is possible to become addicted to energy drinks. However, with sales numbers going through the rough for energy drink manufacturers, it is safe to assume that, as a country, we seem to really enjoy them. Whether or not we will regret downing these beverages at an alarming rate is yet to be seen.Tags: Addiction, Alcoholic Energy Drinks, Alcoholism, Binge Drinking, Energy Drinks