Why you might want to think twice before grabbing an energy drink

Kaitlyn Bowers, Video Director

As college students, we’ve all experienced those days where you just need a little pick me up. However, experts say that energy drink you run to when you’re feeling a little sleepy may be doing more harm than good.

According to a new study in the Journal of the American Heart Association, energy drinks raise your blood pressure, but they also change the heart’s electrical activity.

The report tracked thirty-four participants, all of which were in their 20’s, who drank 32 ounces of an energy drink. Their vital signs were taken after consumption of the drink. The results showed that energy drinks significantly prolong the heart’s electrical activity and raise blood pressure.

The primary ingredient in energy drinks is caffeine. According to the Mayo Clinic, up to 400 milligrams is safe for an adult to consume in a day. Most energy drinks have about 100-200 milligrams of caffeine per 16 fluid ounces, according to caffeineinformer.com.

While caffeine is the primary ingredient in energy drinks, many other ingredients are added. These include taurine, ginseng, and B vitamins. When these ingredients are combined with caffeine, the effects of the caffeine can be enhanced.

The lack of regulation on energy drinks causes concern to experts, especially in regards to adolescents. A study done by the American Academy of Pediatrics concluded that energy drinks should not be consumed by children. However, nothing can be done to stop a child from consuming any amount of energy drinks.

An additional study shows that a surprising  percent of college students partake in drinking energy drinks. The side effects of energy drinks can include heart palpitations, headaches, and jolt and crash episodes.

So, before you grab your next energy drink, you might want to consider the side effects first.


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