Dangers of Energy Drinks
Over the last few years energy drinks have been all the rage. Why not? Get a boost of energy in an easy and occasionally delicious beverage, and most of them claim to be full of vitamins, nutrients, and other herbs. The truth is that sometimes energy drinks contain dangerous levels of caffeine (up to 7 times that of a cup of coffee) and other unhealthy ingredients that can cause some serious health issues. Things like anxiety, migraines, high blood pressure, and elevated heart rates are the least of the things to worry about as there are multiple long term effects that are much more dangerous. Within the last year, overdoses on energy drinks have begun to be tracked by poison control centers nationwide. Between the months of October and December there were almost 700 reported cases that ranged from irritability to things like hallucinations, seizures, and chest pain. Some of these symptoms can be attributed to caffeines addictive properties and how it can actually cause withdrawal, while other ingredients like sugars and artificial sweeteners that are generally processed like toxins by the body. Some of the potentially harmful ingredients typically used in energy drinks include: Sodium benzoate- has been linked to cell damage and free radical production Phenylalanine - a neurotoxin that can excite cells in the brain to the point of death Guarana - 4 times the caffeine of coffee beans Ephedra - increases blood pressure and could even cause strokes, seizures, and death Better than loading up on caffeine, sugar, and other dangerous additives is a regimen of proper sleep and an active lifestyle. There are safer supplements to use for energy as well, such as vitamin B and magnesium.