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Seth Bilazarian, MD's insight:
The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that young children should not consume energy drinks. Caffeine may be especially harmful for children. Adolescents should not have more than 100 mg of caffeine each day. Parents should monitor how much soda or coffee (or other beverages containing caffeine, including energy drinks of any kind) their teenagers drink and help them understand the risks associated with taking in large amounts of caffeine.
Adults should limit their caffeine intake to 500 mg per day. Individuals who have heart problems, high blood pressure, or trouble sleeping or who are taking medications should be careful to limit the amount of caffeine they drink. Older persons may be more sensitive to the effects of caffeine.
Energy drinks are not regulated by the US Food and Drug Administration. However, the ingredients in energy drinks may be harmful to some individuals. It is important to read labels for any food or drink product that you consume. If you choose to use energy drinks, make sure you understand the ingredients and serving sizes listed on the label.
More good news for "coffee achievers". I think we already knew this.
(Relaxnews) - Is a strong cup of coffee a happiness elixir? New research finds that caffeine may take the negative edge off of the world, and focus your mind on positivity.
FDA said it has received reports of 13 deaths since 2008 possibly related to the use of 5-hour Energy shots, a disclosure that could heighten scrutiny of drinks and dietary supplements that promise to deliver an energy..
5-hour Energy, sold in 1.93-ounce plastic bottles, increasingly has become a fixture at check-out counters of convenience stores and drug stores. Its label promises to deliver a boost of energy "in minutes."
In a statement Wednesday, Living Essentials said 5-hour is intended for "busy adults" and that its product is an effective dietary supplement, containing about as much caffeine as a cup of coffee.
It recommends on product labels that consumers don't drink more than two bottles a day, spaced several hours apart, and that consumers sensitive to caffeine should consult with a physician.
"It is important to note that submitting a serious adverse event report to the FDA, according to the agency itself, is not construed by FDA as an admission that the dietary supplement was involved, caused or contributed to the adverse event being reported, or that any person included in the report caused or contributed to the event," the company added in its statement Wednesday.
Living Essentials had about $600 million in sales last year.
Energy drink consumption has grown exponentially over the past 5 - 10 years. Sales are increasing at double the rate of total carbonated beverage sales.
The drinks are primarily targeted at youth and young adult market with aggressive advertising and marketing. And the potential medical complications of ingesting such drinks are becoming apparent, to both cardiologists and other health specialists.
The combined levels of caffeine in these energy drinks are much higher than a standard cup of coffee. And adverse events and complications from energy drinks largely arise from their caffeine content.
Coffee drinkers are getting a bit more reassurance that their beverage of choice may not be bad for them, and might even be linked to living longer.
The upshot was that the more coffee people drank, the less risk they had of dying within the study’s time span. Men who drank six or more cups of coffee a day had a 10% lower risk than those who drank none, while for women it was 15% lower. The trend was consistent for deaths from a number of major causes such as heart disease, diabetes, stroke and even injuries and accidents. (The authors noted that the association “could reflect chance.”) One major exception was cancer, where coffee drinkers saw no advantage.
Indeed, the study has lots of limits. One is the risk that the effect of other things that change health, like smoking, may not have been completely filtered out. When all of these other influences were left in, coffee drinkers actually tended to have a higher risk of dying than those who abstained.