Nowadays energy drinkers are becoming popular among teenagers. About one-third of teenagers have energy drinks regularly. Energy drinks comprise of added sugar, caffeine, additives with legal stimulants like L-carnitine, guarane, and taurine. These stimulants help in improving the attention, alertness, and energy in an individual. For many teenagers energy drinks act as an instant booster for stamina. Usually, they consume it to stay up all night or be energetic for any tournament or event.
Health Effects of Energy Drinks on Teenagers
Types of Energy Drinks
Energy drinks can be classifieds as :
- Container energy drinks similar to soft drink
- Small container drinks called as energy shots
Caffeine is a major component of both types of energy drinks. Energy drinks with a high amount of caffeine and stimulants should be restricted from the regular diet of teenagers.
Why do Teenagers like to Drink Energy Drinks?
Energy drinks are known to provide instant benefits to an individual’s body. But they are known to have a lot more negative effects on the body. Energy drinks act as a source of short term energy as well as alertness. But these benefits are often less when compared to its negative effects on the body.
Teenagers are fond of these energy drinks because of its taste. Along with taste due to its cheap cost, promotions, easy access, and peer influences teenagers are more likely to consume it. The marketing activities and value for money make such drinks attractive. Researchers say it is difficult to conclude that any single factor alone is not enough to make energy drinks appealing. A combination of factors such as easy availability and peer influence could be considered as the reason of teenage attraction towards energy drinks.
Side-Effects of Energy Drinks on Teenagers
Energy drinks contain a high amount of caffeine as well as additives which cause harmful effects on the body. The health of teenagers is harmed if they consume it regularly. Following are some of the side-effects of energy drinks :
- Teenagers who consume it regularly, tend to develop certain sleeping disorders, lack of concentration with poor learning and performing skills. Such teenagers may develop bad habits like smoking or drinking alcohol.
- Energy drinks are a poor source of nutrition and a good source of sugar as well as caffeine. Hence, drinking energy drinks regularly is harmful.
- Many teenagers experience insomnia, nausea, vomiting, headache, and abdominal pain as side effects of the energy drinks. In severe cases, they may even experience seizures.
- Many teenagers may develop breathing issues.
- Chest pain along with heart palpitations
- Such teenagers become highly anxious and feel jittery.
- Energy drinks comprise guarane, creatinine, taurine, and various amounts of vitamins, proteins, carbohydrates, and minerals. This mix of compounds with caffeine can cause dehydration as caffeine is a potent diuretic.
- Many energy drinks can contain alcohol which is very harmful to teenagers.
- Caffeine may bring upon the dependency of teenagers on such energy drinks if consumed regularly.
- If any energy drinks contain caffeine more than 500mg then caffeine toxicity can occur.
How much is the good/limit of Intake?
As such no specific quantity of energy drink is assigned to be considered as safe. Many teenagers think a large number of energy drinks help them to stay awake, boost up their performance and growth. But they tend to forget it’s ill- effects on the body. According to experts, caffeine intake is needed to be limited age-wise. Teenagers should avoid consuming caffeine more than 100 mg per day. It is easy to determine the caffeine recommendation through the energy drink’s band and container size.
Occasional consumption of energy drinks is less likely to cause harm but they should not be part of daily routine. It is recommended for teenagers and pregnant women to avoid energy drinks to avoid intake of excessive caffeine.
How much Caffeine is safe for Teenagers?
Usually an energy drink contains about 80 mg of caffeine per 8 ounces which is quite the same to an average cup of coffee. Many drinks contain more than 8 ounces of caffeine specifically the “energy shots” these contain about 200 mg of caffeine in only 1.93 ounces. Such drinks should be restricted on daily purpose. Teenagers should be aware of such energy drinks and avoid drinking them.
All energy drinks promise to deliver benefits to the body at the cost of some harmful effects on the body. These drinks increase alertness in teenagers but excessive intake of caffeine can cause serious health-related complications. Therefore, teenagers should avoid consuming energy drinks on a regular basis.