Energy drinks have long been touted as a liquid way to increase stamina and give a much-needed boost when feeling low or requiring a little extra kick. But there’s now some reason and science to believe that they have been doing much more harm than good. In fact, they could be downright damaging. In a recent study, consumption of energy drinks has shown to have a number of different negative effects on a person. It’s enough to reach for something else in the convenience store case.
This recent Raine study was performed on folks in Western Australia. They tried to isolate a number of different factors for the almost 900 people who took part in the survey and study. There was an effort to control a whole host of different things like family upbringing, drug use, body mass index, smoking habits, alcohol consumption and a number of other possible “negatives” on a person’s health. Even with these factors taken into account, energy drinks still came out as having considerable long-term downside for the drinker.
Some of the reported effects of energy drinks were things like increased rates of anxiety, stress, and depression among young males (the most active drinkers of these products). There, of course, is something of a chicken or the egg aspect of this though. Folks who feel like they lack energy could be seeking out energy drinks as a means to “remedy” that situation. It could be folks are already suffering from the reported effects long before they started pounding tallboys of liquid energy. But it does appear that even when that is factored in, there are plenty of reasons to avoid drinking these things.
Look, if you thought chugging down energy drinks with names like Monster, Red Bull, Rockstar, Monster Juice, Venom, and Full Throttle were going to be good for you, well I don’t really know what to say. The names alone should have been something of a tip-off that long-term health wasn’t at the top of the priority chain for these companies. But there’s also a dividing line between a drink simply being unhealthy and it being long-term damaging. If this study can be taken seriously, then the latter is in play.
Energy drinks tend to be loaded with a number of different ingredients that could cause issues like disrupted sleep and even weight gain, both of which can have debilitating effects on a person physically and mentally. Some of those include substantial amounts of sugar and caffeine which, if taken in excess, are decidedly bad for the body.
But just because a study came out detailing some potentially significant downsides for energy drinks, don’t think these things are coming off the shelf anytime soon. This is a billions-of-dollars industry with a strong foothold in a number of different markets. Because they claim to offer the thing most people are constantly seeking out (more energy), there will likely always be a sizable market. We could see more studies come along that work to illuminate the physical and mental pitfalls of these drinks, but as we’ve seen with other products, it’s unlikely to make too much of a dent in their sales.