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The detrimental side effects of energy drinks

Analysis by Dr. Joseph Mercola Fact Checked

energy drink

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  • Although not marketed as an energy drink, the original formulation of Coke contained two stimulants — caffeine and cocaine; currently, common energy drinks are a combination of over 300 mg of caffeine with other metabolic agents proven to boost energy, disrupt sleep, alter heart function and interfere with arterial function
  • Experts are concerned the combination of caffeine with other ingredients in energy drinks, found in much higher concentrations than natural food or plants, may enhance the effects of caffeine and trigger negative health effects, including emergency room treatment or death
  • The antioxidants in straight black organic coffee has health benefits, statistically lowers risk of all-cause mortality and may improve cognitive function
  • Hydrating with molecular hydrogen helps boost energy without added risk; also pay attention to other lifestyle choices, such as getting quality sleep, staying well-hydrated, supporting your gut microbiome and eating a well-balanced diet, high in healthy fats and low in net carbohydrates

Over the past centuries, people have used a variety of beverages to give them an extra burst of energy. While trends have changed from tea to coffee, to soft drinks and then energy drinks, the ultimate goal has been the same. Although not marketed as such, the first energy drink may have been Coca-Cola, launched in 1886, as it originally contained two strong stimulants — caffeine and cocaine.

The company's name — Coca-Cola — was derived from the coca plant from which cocaine is derived and the kola nut, the source of caffeine. In 1960, Taisho Pharmaceuticals in Japan made the first drink specifically targeted at increasing energy. It contained essential vitamins, taurine and niacin, metabolic agents proven to boost energy and concentration.


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