At times, we all need that extra energy to, for example, study all night or to play an intense basketball game. Question is where can you attain that energy? Many teens and young adults are using energy drinks as a source for caffeine enrichment. Recent studies have shown that energy drinks can be unhealthy for teens and young adults. Energy drinks are becoming ubiquitous and are an easy access to many teens and young adults. These teens and young adults do little research about these types of drinks and are unaware of these consequences.
According to researchers from the University of Minnesota and Duke University, researchers have found that teens and young adults are at higher health risk with energy drinks as this is often associated with higher intake of other sweetened beverage and cigarette smoking. Even though consumption of soft drinks has decreased over the past few years, the consumption of energy drinks has tripled in recent years. Researchers conducted an experiment in which 20 male high school students participated in this study and their daily activities were tracked. Results have shown that male students, who consumed energy drinks weekly, spend about to four additional hours per week playing video games compared to those who drank less than once per week. Researchers have concluded that this can eventually lead to negative behaviour.
In addition, due to the harmful effects from energy drinks, many politicians are concerned how these energy drink companies are marketing towards people under the age of 18. This energy drink industry has had an increase in 60% growth from 2008-2012. A report has been released about the growing concern on the lack of regulation on these energy drinks by the U.S Food and Drug Association (FDA). This report was sent to 12 energy drink companies about their concerns and only 3 companies responded to this reports. These companies are in a very competitive field, and therefore, want to deviate away from these regulations.
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Association of energy drinks with alcohol has even caused more concern within the health field. An Australian study has shown that people who drank alcohol with energy drinks found to drink more than those who just drank alcohol. In an experiment consisting of 75 young-adult participants, those who drank alcohol and energy drinks had a stronger desire for alcohol and wanted to continue boozing. There is a constant research happening on how alcohol and energy drinks interact with each other within the body.
Taking a step back, there is a growing concern about the consumption of energy drinks by teens and young adults. Energy drinks have shown to cause heart palpitations (feeling of heart beating too fast or too slow). Companies need to work together to prevent marketing towards young adults and teens. As well as drinkers must be aware of the association of alcohol with energy drinks. Next time you consider taking an energy drink, you may want to do some research beforehand.