Things That Scare Me #4

Melissa DeCicco
4045 days ago.

Energy Drinks.

I find myself preaching to friends and co-workers that their heart will explode one of these days if they continue to consume an excessive amount of energy drinks.  I have no research to back that up, but I feel like it’s not impossible.  There is no way it is ok to consume 4-5 times more caffeine in one drink than soda or coffee.  It is also not ok to ingest in one beverage the amount of sugar in 3 Krispy Kreme doughnuts.

Even more scary than energy drinks consumed by adults is the consumption by young adults and children.  Of 300  energy drink poisonings studied in 2011, 25% of them involved children younger than 6.  Seriously…??  Although after seeing Toddlers and Tiara’s, I really shouldn’t be surprised.  I guess parents assume it is safe because they are sold over the counter, but there are no regulations on any of the ingredients or directions on a safe number to consume in a given day for any age group.  Do we really need young children experiencing withdrawal?  I am certain this can’t be good for growing children.  My opinion, if a beverage needs to have a warning about how many you can consume, it shouldn’t be sold over the counter and there should certainly be an minimum age at which you can purchase them without an adult present.

Here is some information surrounding energy drinks:

Side effects may include – heart palpitations, seizures, strokes, sudden death, nausea, diarrhea, increased weight gain, decayed teeth, anxiety, headaches, severe dehydration, and the list goes on.  It sounds more like one of those commercials on television for a prescription drug.

When mixed with alcohol, it is said to delay the drowsiness associated with intoxication and those who mix alcohol with energy drinks are more likely to leave an establishment drunk and are 4 times more likely to intend to drive under the influence.  It totally makes sense, you are now just a more awake drunk with the same motor skills as a regular drunk.  That is not a good thing.

Given that it is the fastest growing US beverage market, I don’t think Americans are as concerned as I am.  I am afraid that in about 7 years, we will have more research and find out that the side effects are actually worse than I have reported here.  I certainly hope I am wrong, but remember when smoking was thought to be harmless?  I am also not a caffeine hater.  I love coffee.  I do, however, believe in moderation.

Didn’t your parents tell you when you were little that caffeine would stunt your growth?  That was enough for me to stay away 🙂

What is it that makes these drinks so appealing?  Please share.


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Melissa DeCicco

Melissa is a wiz at crazy facial expressions, golfs at every chance possible, and loves super uncomfortable shoes. A dedicated Dolly Parton fan, she purchased Dollywood season passes several years in a row (it’s 500 miles away) and finally met her in 2004 – she ROCKS!

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