The business of energy drinks is growing, and, each year, their market share continues to rise. The popularity of these drinks is alarmingly high in developed countries such as the United States, the United Kingdom, and Canada, and the populations who consume them most frequently are the ones with the highest risk of experiencing scary (and sometimes deadly) side effects.
There are not enough clinical trials on the safety of energy drinks to make a weighted decision about correct dosages and safer formulations, which is why there’s a wide variety between one brand and another when it comes to ingredients, concentrations, and recommended dosages.
However, even if there’s not enough data to ban energy drinks from the market, there are enough reasons consumers should avoid them like the plague, and, in this article, we will give you at least 9 of them.
- They ruin your teeth
The citric acid in energy drinks serves as a preservative and improves the flavor, but it also wears away the enamel of your teeth. This is why dentists say they are worried about young adults who often consume such drinks because, after losing enamel, teeth are more susceptible to cavities and decay.
- They make you gain weight
Certain energy drinks contain over 200 calories per bottle! Such a high amount of calories would spoil any attempt to control your weight and may even result in obesity if consumed frequently enough over a long period of time.
- They give you headaches
According to research, nearly 20 percent of people experience a headache as a common side effect of consuming energy drinks. One of the main ingredients in energy drinks is caffeine, which features a withdrawal syndrome that includes headache and sleep problems. (This is just one of the reasons these drinks are so habit-forming!)
- They cause high blood pressure
Sugar along with caffeine is a harmful combination for your cardiovascular system. Both of these compounds together promote weight gain and obesity-related health problems such as high blood pressure and metabolic syndrome.
- They lead to diabetes
Similarly, the high concentration of sugar in energy drinks causes sudden and violent spikes in blood sugar concentration that could speed up the onset of insulin resistance and diabetes. This is even worse when caffeine is involved, as a study shows.
- They cause dangerous drug interactions
There are many ingredients in energy drinks besides caffeine. For example, there is taurine, ginseng, L-carnitine, and others. Each of these ingredients has been shown to cause negative drug interactions, and they may reduce the efficacy of certain prescription medications. If you are taking prescribed or over-the-counter medication, you should talk with your doctor before using energy drinks.
- They damage your brain
Energy drinks may help you stay awake on the job or during a serious study session, but they can also cause dangerous alterations in the brain. First off, even if you feel more alert while you’re pounding them back, that does not necessarily mean your focus is improved. In fact, you may become forgetful and clumsy. Furthermore, there are certain cases of people who have experienced seizures after having energy drinks.
- They drive you insane
Other alarming side effects of energy drinks include anxiety, insomnia, and worsening of several mental health problems. According to a study, energy drinks cause an alteration in alertness levels, which may result in restlessness and heart palpitations.
- They kill you
Energy drinks cause a number of changes in the central nervous system and the cardiovascular system. It is no wonder why people living with heart conditions can experience life-threatening symptoms when consuming energy drinks.
However, even those considered to be in “perfect health” may experience a heart attack or other potentially fatal side effect after consuming energy drinks. (It’s happened!)
The FDA and international health organizations may not have enough data to back up these claims and ban energy drinks. However, if we understand enough about health and how the body works, we can make an informed choice and avoid several health problems by reducing or eliminating our intake of energy drinks.