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Friday, October 24, 2008

The Bad Energy Drink Buzz

You don’t have to look far to get recent energy drink-related news. They are consistently a controversy in the news. The public touts all sorts of concerns – ranging from tooth decay to life-threatening caffeine and sugar dosages. These apprehensions over energy drinks are even more alarming when you realize that the energy drink market is primarily made up of unsuspecting children and teenagers…possibly your own kids!

Consumer reports show that the market for energy drinks has increased to over 75 percent just this past year; taking over for the once, more popular, soda market. However, like many who hear the news reports, you’re probably asking yourself – what exactly are the real health risks associated with the more popular energy drinks (Red Bull, Rockstar, and Jolt…just to name a few) - if any at all?

While energy drinks do “pump up the volume”, or rather increase one’s energy, this by no means is attributed to their healthy ingredients. In fact, your typically energy drink is nothing more than a combination of sugar, caffeine, and exotic-sounding stimulating substances – such as green tea extract, ginseng, and gurana. One widely accepted myth is that energy drinks are healthy – a common misunderstanding when you’re dealing with a drink that claims to increase your energy the same as say, exercise. Many parents and kids shrug off energy drinks as harmful because they understandably get them confused with more healthful sports drinks such as Gatorade, which is intended as a fluid replacement that actually replenishes an athlete’s vital electrolyte (sodium) levels, following very intense exercise. Energy drinks, on the other hand, are intended for quick bursts of alertness. The “caffeine rush” that they deal is similar to a few cups of coffee, and we all know how healthy a double full fat latte with whipped cream and chocolate sprinkles is, now don’t we?

As you can see, energy drinks and sports drinks are used by two totally different crowds – energy drinks for the short burst of fuel-inducing energy they give computer hackers, truck drivers, club-goers, and students working those late night papers; while sports drinks are specifically intended to refuel the hydration of elite athletes.

But before you go running to your child’s room to inspect the empty cans that they left strewn across their bedroom floor to make a case against the dreaded energy drink, you may want to try to explain your concern rather then condemn their favorite beverages in a furry. Approach it from their level by explaining your concerns in a manner they will understand. For example, turn to their best friend - the Internet!

A new website called will provide your child with all they need to know about the health concerns surrounding energy drinks. This site provides valuable information you’ll be hard-pressed to find anywhere else, for example: the truth about energy drinks from real health professionals. explores the controversies surrounding energy drinks to the forefront. For example it discusses:

• How caffeine effects young people compared to adults.
• It talks about clinical studies that prove the more exotic-sounding ingredients in energy drinks - ginseng, gurana, and taurine – have no healthy properties.
• It notes that moderation is the key when it comes to energy drinks. They can provide a healthy alternative to coffee when consumed with a healthy diet.
• It reveals that even energy drink manufacturers admit that their beverages are not a substitute for good nutrition.

Knowledge is vital when it comes to your child’s realization of their body, and its limits when it comes to consuming any food or beverage.

Source : Amber Lynne /

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