Top 14 Energy Drink Dangers

energy-drink-dangers
The dangers of energy drinks are getting a lot of press because of the sheer volume of energy stimulating products in the marketplace and the ease of access to these by minors.

While most energy drinks don’t have as much caffeine as a Starbucks’ coffee, they are heavily sweetened and easy to drink, which appeals more to the younger demographic.

Therefore, we are seeing increased incidents of those 18 and younger having dangerous side effects from consuming too many energy drinks at one time.

Fourteen Dangers of Drinking Too Many Energy Drinks at One Time

  1. Cardiac Arrest: While our Caffeine Calculator can show people how many energy drinks at one time would be lethal, this formula doesn’t apply to everyone. Those with underlying heart conditions have gone into cardiac arrest after just a few energy drinks. Before drinking energy drinks or caffeine, be sure to know your heart’s health.-A new study showed that energy drinks cause more forceful heart contractions, which could be harmful to some with certain heart conditions.- One study showed that between 2009 and 2011 there were 4854 calls to poison control centers regarding energy drinks. 51% of these calls were involving children. src– Another study shows the link between energy drinks and cardiac events among teens. This study recommends that teens consume no more than one 250 ml energy drink per day and not before or during sports or exercise. Study link. A 2016 study showed that 18-40-year-olds who drank energy drinks had a significant increase in their QTc interval, which is a marker of abnormal heart rhythm risk. Abstract.
  2. Headaches and Migraines: Too many energy drinks can lead to severe headaches from the caffeine withdrawal symptoms. Changing the amount of caffeine you ingest daily can cause more frequent headaches.
  3. Increased Anxiety: Those with 2 different genetic variations in their adenosine receptors are prone to feeling increased anxiety when consuming caffeinated beverages such as energy drinks. Larger doses of caffeine can even spur on full-blown panic attacks. The research.
  4. Insomnia: Energy drinks do a good job of keeping people awake, but when abused, they can cause some people to miss sleep altogether. This lack of sleep causes impaired functioning and can be dangerous to drive or perform other concentration heavy tasks.
  5. Type 2 Diabetes: Because many energy drinks are also very high in sugar, they can eventually wear out the insulin-producing cells of the pancreas, which leads to type 2 diabetes.
  6. Drug Interaction: Some of the ingredients in energy drinks can interact with prescription medications especially medications taken for depression.
  7. Addiction: People can become addicted to caffeine and energy drinks. This can lead to a lack of functioning when unable to have the energy drink or a financial stress from having to buy several energy drinks daily.
  8. Risky behavior: There was a study published in The Journal of American College Health which showed that teens are more likely to take dangerous risks when high on caffeine. This could result in injury or legal trouble.
  9. Jitters and Nervousness: Too much caffeine from energy drinks causes some people to shake and be anxious. This can interfere with performing needed tasks or cause emotional issues. This study shows how caffeine can elicit anxiety.
  10. Vomiting: Too many energy drinks can lead to vomiting. This causes dehydration and acid erosion of teeth and esophagus if frequent.
  11. Allergic Reactions: Because of the many ingredients in energy drinks reactions could occur, from minor itching to airway constriction.
  12. High Blood Pressure: Caffeinated products like energy drinks can elevate a person’s blood pressure. For those with normal blood pressure, this isn’t concerning, but those with already elevated blood pressure could be placing themselves at risk of stroke and other health problems related to hypertension if they consume too many energy drinks in a short period of time. The research. A more recent study conducted by The Mayo Clinic found that Rockstar Energy Drink (240 mg version) significantly raised the blood pressure of study participants compared to the placebo drink. Overall, there was a 6.4% increase in average blood pressure. More about the study here. A newer study published by the American Heart Association showed that energy drinks have a greater negative effect on blood pressure than drinks that contain caffeine alone as the active ingredient. They believe the combination of ingredients in energy drinks are why these beverages pose a greater risk of heart-related problems than drinks like coffee or tea.
  13. Niacin Overdose: Niacin (Vitamin B3) is placed in most energy drinks at levels that cause no harm and can even be therapeutic. However, if a person is taking additional supplements containing Niacin, overdosing on the vitamin is possible when consuming energy drinks in addition to those supplements. Symptoms include; Skin flushing, dizziness, rapid heart rate, vomiting, itching, gout, and diarrhea.  Source. The British Journal of Medicine recently published a case study of a man who experienced nonviral hepatitis from B3 toxicity believed to have been from consuming too many energy drinks during a period of three weeks.
  14. Stress Hormone Release: A study conducted by The Mayo Clinic found that a 240 mg version of Rockstar Energy Drink caused an increase in stress hormone release. The average norepinephrine level of the participants increased by 74% while the placebo only caused a 31% increase. The study

Despite these serious dangers quitting caffeine is often easier said than done.

Due to the addictive nature of caffeine exacerbated by anxiety and lack of sleep, actually quitting caffeine can be a nightmare. After all, you’ve reached a place where you practically need caffeine to function. In this situation, it’s time to consider a legitimate caffeine withdrawal detox to cut caffeine quickly, without the pains of cold turkey detox.

From: Current Opinions in Pediatrics (Apr 2012)

From: Current Opinions in Pediatrics (Apr 2012)

World Health Organization’s Warning

The World Health Organization (WHO) just released a warning letter concerning the dangers energy drinks pose to young people, especially since they found 68% of adolescents consume them.

To reduce energy drink dangers, the recommend the following to government agencies:

  • Establish an upper caffeine limit on all products.
  • Enforce labeling requirements and sales restrictions to minors.
  • Enforce regulation of the industry to responsibly market their products.
  • Train health care workers to recognize and treat overdose from energy drinks.
  • Screen patients with a history of substance abuse for heavy consumption of energy drinks.
  • Educate the public about the dangers of mixing energy drinks with alcohol.
  • Continue researching the negative side effects energy drinks have on young people.

Their report is found here.

Moderation is Key

Too much of anything can potentially be dangerous, so moderation is recommended when consuming energy drinks as well. Caffeine (trimethylxanthine) and other ingredients in these beverages are drugs and should be respected.

To reduce the potential energy drink dangers education is key. Consumers need to be aware of how much caffeine is in a drink or product and parents need to know exactly what their children are drinking and talk to them about what is safe.

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  • Benjamin Miles

    If you still like to drink energy drinks but you are afraid of these health risks I recomend trying Verve. Check it out at: http://www.benjaminmiles.vemma.com

  • Brooke Danielle

    If you don’t want the outcomes of drinking energy drinks, try to lower the use of the product or just stop period. Only you control the outcomes of your doing.

  • kid ink

    Hey Joe your pathetic! Judging people for there addictions. Why don’t you continue not getting laid and play your video games.

  • raga

    I,m in my sixties. I used to drink lots of tea..strong tea. Now i rarely drink more than one cup of tea a day, because i have taken to energy drinks.

    Zero calories.
    I have no problem sleeping, and don’t get palpitations.
    on average i drink 3 energy drinks a day, maybe more sometimes.
    As a vegan i think it helps my diet.
    Just as many people will have bad reactions to tea or coffee as energy drinks.
    We are all different are we not?

  • EducatedMoron

    If you have a degree in nutrition (hopefully college), you should have been required to take college English classes, which if you passed, would tell me you know how to read English at least at a high school level and that also tells me that you know this is a “Dangers of excessive energy drinks” post and not a “Pros VS Cons” post, therefore you’re either lying or you’re English skills are lacking quite a bit. Or perhaps you’re foreign. If English is your first language, you’re obviously a terrible troll. If you’re foreign, I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt.

  • Doc. Erum

    M on some anti epileptic drugs. I drink an energy drink sometimes and coffee at other. But I consume tea daily. I get severe migraines and I think the drug concentration gets affected by tea 2. Any help from someone wud b appreciated.

  • Ted

    I would advise you to consult your doctor about the possible drug interaction, but it sounds like you vary your caffeine intake too much. This can be a migraine trigger. Try to consume about the same amount of caffeine daily.

  • Hedergy

    Perhaps you’re healthy for you age, which is good but I’m skeptical to believe energy drinks are of help to your diet. All bodies are unique but 3+ energy drinks is too much for most people – both in regards to caffeine and sugar intake. You’ve likely just increased your tolerance to the point that you no longer feel the effects of it. If you’re using energy drinks with high levels of caffeine, sugar or artificial additives I’d suggest many of the more natural alternatives to boost energy.

    -TJ from Hedergy.com

  • sebastion

    good for sounds like me

  • Matthew Mundy

    Hi im matt i drink 5 cans a day of monster. Drinks a day

  • Fulanito Wey

    well if you dont feel normal when you consume these types of drinks… simply just stop drinking them , rather than causing drama or thinking too much about the situation .

  • Smokey

    Too many Monsters, Matt. Too many…

  • Connor Grace

    Hi! I am 13 years old and I have been told energy drinks are bad for me but drink them anyway. My friends and I don’t drink monster often. Once a day tops, that being said a few days ago I drank 2 in one day. I felt really REALLY hyped and weird, I didn’t have any cardiac arrest issues or anything but at worst I had fast heart beating, but nothing where the beats varied too much. One a day doesn’t really effect me except a boost of energy and definitely no heart issues. Im a still good to drink 1 a day tops? Or should I quit all together?

  • Connor Grace

    Oh and a small bit of information is when I was younger I had a heart murmur, hole or whatever you want to look at it as. I am 99% sure I have outgrown it but it still may be weakened. Does this also have a large effect on my energy drink habits and their safety?

  • Tom

    I’m 13 years old, I drink 1-2 Monsters every week.Is this bad?

  • Ted

    You really should check with your doctor since you have/had a heart condition.

  • Connor Grace

    Thanks! I will make sure to do that.

  • katie

    I drink about 3 different types of energy drinks a day and downed a 1liter bottle full of monster energy and im only 15 🙂

  • Ted

    That’s a nice bragging point, but you really should drink energy drinks responsibly according to the directions on the label. You may not be experiencing problems now, but you certainly could in the future.

  • Natasha

    I’m 12 and I’ve drank 2 cans of mother in the last 2 days and my eating habits have changed IS this normal .?

Last Modified: November 9, 2017

References

  • Menci, D., Righini, F. M., Cameli, M., Lisi, M., Benincasa, S., Focardi, M., & Mondillo, S. (2013). Acute effects of an energy drink on myocardial function assessed by conventional echo-Doppler analysis and by speckle tracking echocardiography on young healthy subjects. Journal of amino acids, 2013.
  • Seifert, S. M., Seifert, S. A., Schaechter, J. L., Bronstein, A. C., Benson, B. E., Hershorin, E. R., ... & Lipshultz, S. E. (2013). An analysis of energy-drink toxicity in the National Poison Data System. Clinical toxicology, 51(7), 566-574.
  • Trapp, G. S., Allen, K., O'Sullivan, T. A., Robinson, M., Jacoby, P., & Oddy, W. H. (2014). Energy drink consumption is associated with anxiety in Australian young adult males. Depression and anxiety, 31(5), 420-428. study
  • US National Library of Medicine
  • Curr Opin Pediatr. 2012 Apr; 24(2):243-51 (link).
  • Sanchis-Gomar, F., Pareja-Galeano, H., Cervellin, G., Lippi, G., & Earnest, C. P. (2015). Energy Drink Overconsumption in Adolescents: Implications for Arrhythmias and Other Cardiovascular Events. Canadian Journal of Cardiology.
  • Alsene, K., Deckert, J., Sand, P., & de Wit, H. (2003). Association between A2a receptor gene polymorphisms and caffeine-induced anxiety. Neuropsychopharmacology, 28(9), 1694-1702.
  • Usman, A., & Jawaid, A. (2012). Hypertension in a young boy: an energy drink effect. BMC research notes, 5(1), 591.
  • Shah, S. A., Dargush, A. E., Potts, V., Lee, M., Millard-Hasting, B. M., Williams, B., & Lacey, C. S. (2016). Effects of Single and Multiple Energy Shots on Blood Pressure and Electrocardiographic Parameters. The American journal of cardiology, 117(3), 465-468.