Energy Drinks Think caffeine. Think sugar
Energy drinks are beverages expected to boost mental energy by providing mental and physical stimulation. The concept fits in well with the stress and fatigue associated with modern lifestyles. So, where does the ‘energy’ in such drinks come from? Energy drinks have added caffeine, sugar and other ingredients that their manufacturers say increase stamina and ‘boost’ performance. What impact do they have inside the body? In any case, how do these drinks differ from socalled health drinks, sports drinks and sodas?
Energy drinks can be carbonated and noncarbonated and may contain artificial sweeteners, sugar, guanine and taurine. Most of them contain caffeine, which is a stimulating agent. Caffeine taken in small amounts may have some good effect on health but its consumption must be strictly regulated. Caffeine is a stimulant – consuming a lot of it can lead to heart palpitations, anxiety and insomnia; it also can make you feel jittery and irritable. Over time, caffeine can become addictive.
The safe limit for caffeine is set to be 400 mg per day. Approximately 4 cups of coffee/5 standard cans of energy drink of 250 ml are equivalent to 400 mg of caffeine. A 1.5 gm sachet of coffee contains about 48 grams of caffeine. So it becomes essential for regular coffee drinkers to avoid the consumption of energy drinks.
Energy drinks are loaded with sugar. Consumption of high amounts of sugar is often associated with a lot of health disorders such as diabetes, obesity, dental carries and heart diseases. It is also important to note that sugarfree energy drinks have artificial sweeteners, which may lead to some negative effects on health. Aspartame is one of the most common sweeteners used in sugar-free drinks. Although it is FDA-approved, its consumption must be regulated.