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Cautions of Energy Drinks

When you are tired and beat up and need to stay awake, what do you rely on? Energy drinks! An energy drink keeps you alive and rejuvenated. Energy drinks are becoming increasingly popular. In 2006 alone, over 500 different types of energy drinks were newly added to the market. These new non-alcoholic products were directed mainly towards teens. This makes it easier for teens to mix energy drinks with alcohol. Energy drinks are often confused with sports drinks although they are completely different.

Caffeine  Energy drinks contain caffeine which, although provides alertness, is also extremely addicting. There is also a high concentration of caffeine in energy drinks, which many people find controversial.

Contents – Energy drinks are made from caffeine, sugar, and other herbs which provide alertness. On the other hand sports drinks contain mainly electrolytes and sodium which helps the body to retain important liquids.

Acidity – Soda, pop, and energy drinks are very acidic. On the 14 point pH scale (1 being very acidic and 14 being very basic, with 7 being the normal pH level,) pop is in the acidic part of the spectrum at 2 pH; this is extremely acidic.  Acids, sugars, and artificial sweeteners can shorten one’s lifespan. New diseases which are often associated with old age are now being found in younger people.

Insulin Levels – Energy drinks cause concerning levels of insulin. High dosages of sugar can cause the average person to feel like they are energy-full but after the high, there is a giant drop in insulin levels. The stimulants in energy drinks can boost the heart rate and blood pressure to dangerous levels.

Overuse – If one energy drink will give you a buzz for a couple of hours, then wouldn’t 3 of 4 give you a buzz that will last the whole night? If you read closely there is small writing on each and every energy drink that suggests you drink no more than 2 energy drinks per day.

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-BS Pharm, PharmD, RPh

Dr. Paul Zickler is a graduate of the University of Wester Ontario in 1972. After graduating from the faculty of medicine, Dr. Zickler practiced as an Emergency Physician for 18 years. He has then operated ambulatory medical and travel clinics for 12 years. Dr. Zickler has become an Associate Professor of Emergency Medicine at the University of British Columbia, a Director of Professional Programs for the Justice Institute of British Columbia (paramedic academy), a principal investigator for Phase 2 and 3 studies researching vaccines, and a founding member of the Canadian International Pharmacy Association. Dr. Zickler is passionate about combining western prescription medicine and natural medicines.

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