January 15, 2012

Energy Drinks Popularity.. I Blame Marketing

“It is approaching midnight and the student’s eyes about to shut down but there is still few important chapters left for his 8 am final. He decides on over-nighting. But coffee won’t have any effect as he already had 3 today. Perhaps, he will grab a Redbull.” This normal scene happens every time the finals period creeps in the lives of college students.

Perhaps I am not a nutritionist to judge.  But a food technologist do know what a product is made of: mostly affeine and the amino acid taurine, and both of these may have dangerous consequences for the heart when taken together. Read more ). So energy drinks' subject is like the anti-smoking campaigns by  health practitioners!Thus,  you will always hearing me lobby against  energy drinks in the social scene.
Every time I see my friends grabbing this energy drink (
مشروب الطاقة), my food awareness comes alive ....My friends suffer from me, but I would be saving them ...
A Mania ? Or a Savior?  Find Out Below

 Energy drinks are indeed tempting and they do enhance performance in the short term. Their energy boosting effect is instant especially if the student were not a regular consumer.

However, there is a dark side for this “energetic effect”. While the huge amount of caffeine can provide this temporary jolt of energy, it is chiefly followed by a crash that leaves a person completely drained. Not to forget that caffeine stays in the body for many hours, thus interfering with sleep when one really needs to sleep. This can leave him exhausted rather than refreshed in the morning, and potentially causing a self-perpetuating cycle.

A survey published in the Nutrition Journal in 2007 and done about energy drink consumption patterns among college students in USA showed that weekly jolt and crash episodes were experienced by 29% of users, as well as 22% reported having headaches, and 19% heart palpitations from consuming energy drinks.

Energy drinks have also become popular among young athletes. While athletes insist that these energy drinks resemble a cup of coffee, medical experts warn that drinking those energy drinks should not be consumed before, during or even after physical activity as they cause more dehydration. Moreover, consuming them while dehydrated or having flu or while taking muscle-building supplements like creatine leads to an increased risk of fatal cardiac arrhythmia.Some health experts also warn all individuals, whether athletes or not, from drinking them along while taking prescription medications.

Coffee has more caffeine , but why is not as dangerous as Energy Drinks??

On the other hand, the American Beverage Association defends those beverages by claiming that "When it comes to energy drinks, the amount of caffeine in most mainstream energy drinks is about half that in a cup of coffee in a coffee shop, if you compare ounce to ounce."(Check this more elaborate interactive chart  for the caffeine content for each brand of coffee, tea, soda, or any beverage)

Notably, the energy drink industry is worth over a billion dollars in sales annually. Almost all ads target the youth generation only which makes one wonder about the ethical role of marketing
personnel! Yep. I blame the marketing department.

And let's not open the subject of alcohol and energy drink mixes. All what I can say about these mixes is that they have been recently banned by FDA ( Food and Drug Adminstration).Check the news.  Do you hear that Lebanese people?? Stop liking facebook pages that sell something that can kill you!
Stop Liking those pages :)
Pearl's Powder :An advice from an experienced student who have been doing exams and finals for 5 consecutive years , students who want to get extra energy to tackle their finals should follow a healthy diet, exercise if they can, and get a good quality sleep on a regular basis.
And better than getting those caffeinated energy drinks, choose natural drinks, such as black, green tea, orange juice, or even the traditional Yerba mate i.e “matteh” in Lebanese.
( P.S I will be posting about Matteh in an upcoming post )

* This article appeared in Outlook , AUB's Students Newspaper . Issue 11, Volume 44. 


  1. Excellent post sharing for make health....
    Creatine Powder

  2. I blame marketing too hehe.
    Energy drinks/coffee/ bla bla don't work, when I'm sleepy I'll sleep :P

    1. Marketing ppl are the source of all evil if they dont understand their ethical roles :(

  3. Really good post! Hope there will be more good post here!Thanks for sharing valuable information.solar panels for petrol station