THE NEGATIVE EFFECTS OF ENERGY DRINKS
The dangers of energy drinks are becoming common nowadays because of their easy access by minors, and also due to the many energy stimulating products readily available in the market. Although most of the energy drinks do not contain caffeine such as Starbuck’s coffee, they are highly sweetened and they are easy to consume; this makes them more appealing to the minors. This has resulted to children below eighteen years showing dangerous side effects that result from overconsumption of energy drinks.
There are many negative effects of over consuming energy drinks, especially by the young people. This paper will discuss how the energy drinks negatively affect the human body; both physically and psychologically. Body.
First, consumption of energy drinks can result in cardiac arrest. Although some people use the Caffeine Calculator to determine the number of energy drinks that can be lethal if taken at once, the formula does not apply to every person. People with undetected or underlying heart problems have been observed to go into cardiac arrest when they take only a few drinks. Before taking caffeine, or energy drinks, one should be aware of the health of their hearts.
A study conducted recently indicated that energy drinks resulted in strong contractions of the heart which were more harmful to people with particular heart problems. According to a research conducted between 2009 and 2011, 4854 calls were made to poison control centers in connection with energy drinks. Out of the calls made, 51% involved children.
Another study showed the connection between cardiac events and energy drinks among the teens. According to the study, teens should not consume more than 250 ml of energy drink per day. The energy drinks should also not be consumed before or during exercise or sports. A more recent study conducted in 2016 showed that, people between 18 – 40 years who consumed energy drinks had their QTc interval increased significantly and this is an indication of abnormal heart rhythm.
The use of energy drinks increases anxiety. People with 2 genetic variations in the adenosine receptors easily experience amplified anxiety when they take drinks with a lot of caffeine such as energy drinks. The huge caffeine amounts can even result in total panic attacks.
Misuse of energy drinks can result in insomnia. Although energy drinks are very important in keeping people awake, they can make them to miss sleep when misused. The deficiency of sleep results in decreased functioning and this can be very risky when someone is doing activities which require much concentration such as driving.
Taking energy drinks can lead to type 2 diabetes. Most of the energy drinks have a lot of sugars. As one continues to take them, they wear out insulin-producing cells in the pancreases; this results in type 2 diabetes.
Energy drinks affect the interaction of drugs in the body. Some of the components contained in the energy drinks interact with prescribed drugs, mostly with those prescribed for depression. The drinks can also cause addiction. Frequent consumption of caffeine or energy drinks results in lack of functioning when one has not taken them. This can also result in financial stress as someone continues buying many energy drinks.
Continuous consumption of energy drinks results in risky behavior. According to a study which was published in The Journal of American College Health, teenagers who take caffeine and energy drinks easily engage in dangerous activities which can injure them or make them to break laws.
A lot of caffeine results in nervousness and jitters. People who take a lot of caffeine and energy drinks tend to shake and they are always anxious. This interferes with their work performance and their emotional stability.
Excessive intake of energy drinks causes vomiting. Increased vomiting results in dehydration. The acid removed from the body during vomiting causes erosion of the esophagus and teeth if it is frequent.
The intake of energy drinks causes allergic reactions. Due to the numerous ingredients contained in the drinks, reactions can easily occur in the body with varying degrees of intensity. The allergic reactions may range from simple itching to constriction of the airway.
Caffeinated drinks can cause high blood pressure. These drinks may not affect people with normal blood pressure. However, for those with already increased pressure, they can end up with stroke and other related conditions. According to a research carried out by The mayo Clinic, 240 mg version of the Rockstar Energy Drink increased the blood pressure of the research group members when compared to the placebo drink. In general, the blood pressure increased by 6.4%. A research published by the American Heart Association indicated that, energy drinks result in worse effects on blood pressure than other drinks which have only caffeine as the main ingredient. The presence of many components in an energy drink make them more dangerous in causing heart related problems as compared to tea or coffee.
Increased consumption of energy drinks results in niacin overdose. The niacin or vitamin B3 contained in most energy drinks is therapeutic, it does not cause any harm. However, when people take other supplements containing niacin together with energy drinks, they overdose the vitamin. This has side effects such as dizziness, vomiting, skin flushing, itching, rapid heart rate, diarrhea and gout.
Consumption of energy drinks causes the release of stress hormone. According to a research carried out by The Mayo Clinic, the RockStar Energy Drink 240 mg version increases the release of stress hormone. The normal levels of norepinephrine in the participants raised by 74%; the increase caused by placebo alone was only 31%.
From the discussion above, it is very clear that energy drinks have very negative effects in the body. Their use should be strictly controlled especially among the minors. People with health problems such as diabetes, high blood pressure and heart problems should try as much as possible to avoid using energy drinks because they easily affect them.