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Dangers of Energy Drinks

Today, energy drinks play a vital role in everyone's busy and hectic lives. The main purpose of consuming energy drinks is to gain instant energy and also save time that is spent in having food. But there are some dangers involved in consuming energy drinks. Let's have a look at them.
Energy drinks are actually soft drinks or simple beverages that claim to boost the energy levels of the consumer and speed up physical activities. Energy drinks are meant to improve the mental and physical abilities of an individual. Caffeine is the most common ingredient of many of the energy drinks. Other energy drink ingredients include carbonated waters, guarana, acai, ginseng and many more. Some energy drinks also contain added sugars and flavors. Energy drinks, if consumed in little quantities just to feel lively would not harm much. But an excess of it, say 2 bottles every day, would prove harmful for your health. Considering the dangers of energy drinks, it is time to think twice whether one should consume it.

Side Effects of Energy Drinks

Most of the dangers lie in the ingredients that make them up. Energy drinks consist of ingredients that ordinary drinks do not have. Excess intake of these ingredients together causes many side effects to your body. Some of it are discussed below.
  • The most important content of an energy drink is caffeine. Caffeine not only increases the blood pressure, but also leads to several other blood related disorders in the body.
  • Energy drinks, if consumed in large quantities, can also affect regular heart beats.
  • Taurine is another very important component of energy drinks. You actually get sufficient amount of taurine through foods containing vitamin B6, but excess of taurine in the body causes it to become toxic.
  • Consumption of energy drinks while performing workouts can lead to dehydration. Therefore instead of energy drinks, it is suggested to have natural rejuvenating drinks such as lemon water to regain energy.
  • Another common ingredient, guarana affects the central nervous system.
  • Energy drinks if mixed with alcohol, prove to be dangerous. This is because alcohol is a depressant while energy drinks are stimulants. The stimulants can prevent you from knowing how much alcohol you have consumed. Also, as both agents are dehydrating it can increase the toxicity of alcohol and will give you a hangover the next day.
  • Regular consumption of energy drinks can make you addictive to these drinks. Addiction of anything is harmful.
  • Other side effects such as insomnia, frequent urination, stomach problems also have been observed in some consumers.
Natural Alternatives to Energy Drinks

Instead of having energy drinks frequently, you can choose some better options to energize yourself and stay away from side effects. You can have a good healthy breakfast, consisting of proteins and low carbohydrate foodstuffs to maintain your energy throughout the day. There are other natural healthy drinks available which are good alternatives to energy drinks. Also remember to drink a lot of water. Consuming around 2 liters of water everyday would prevent fatigue. Regular exercise coupled with a balanced diet would keep your energy levels high. A good sleep of around 7-8 hours every day would keep you active for the whole day. Now if you have so many healthier options, what is the need for you to consume energy drinks and invite problems.

Energy drinks actually are not harmful if you consume them in limited quantities but overuse can prove fatal. There have been instances of death due to excess intake of caffeine through energy drinks. The only thing to remember while consuming energy drinks is to keep it short and 'sweet'!
By Ujwal Deshmukh
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