Are Energy Drinks Healthy For You?

Are Energy Drinks Healthy For You?

There has been more debate about whether or not energy drinks are healthy for you than democrats and republicans squaring off!  There is an abundance of information floating around the internet as well as advertisements in magazines and t.v. stating that by drinking this energy drink, you will feel energetic, healthy and a ton of other miracles but in reality are they as great as the claims state?

So before I give you my unbiased opinion, I would first like to give some of the most common ingredients found in these drinks.  With that being said here are the 4 most common energy drink ingredients and the pros or cons of them.

Common Energy Drink Ingredient #1: Caffeine

Many people do not realize this but it has already been proven that 300 mg’s of caffeine a day can be healthy for you as the caffeine can increase your mental alertness and cause you to not be as fatigued.  As a result of this you will get a better workout and have more energy throughout your day!

However, caffeine has also been proven to be one of the most addicting dietary supplements abused by people due to the effects it has on people.  So the question now remains, do the pros outweigh the cons?

This depends on the type of person you are.  My rule of thumb for any caffeine supplement is to not consume them more than 4-5 times a week.  I like to take them before a workout to get the awesome effects of caffeine but noticed that if I took it 6 or 7 times a week I needed more and more to feel the same effects.  So as a result, as long as you do not consume more than 300 mg’s of caffeine 4-5 times a week, it can actually be healthy for you!

Common Energy Drink Ingredient #2:  B-Vitamins

These vitamins are water soluble vitamins which means that they can have some health benefits but in reality the vitamins themselves do not provide the energy but they help regulate processes in the body such as obtaining energy from proteins, fats and carbs.  So unless your diet is really bad and you are not taking a multi vitamin and mineral formula, then these will not be of any significant benefit to you.

Common Energy Drink Ingredient #3: Artificial Sweeteners

Depending on the type of energy drinks you use, they may have all natural sweeteners or artificial sweeteners.

If your energy drink is an all natural formula then you should not have any problems with sweeteners other than the facts that you must be aware of the high sugar content.  Just because the energy drink is all natural does not mean it will be healthy for you while trying to lose weight.

If your energy drink contains artificial sweeteners such as such as splenda, sugar alcohols, sucralose, maltodextrin, aspartame and corn syrup then there may be a problem.  While small amounts of these are not that bad for you, if there are several of these artificial sweeteners listed above in your drink, then you may have to reconsider your options.

Some side effects of artificial sweeteners can be an increase in weight, a spike in insulin and an increase in appetite.  So just remember to be cautious and learn to read the back of nutrition labels before making a purchase.

Common Energy Drink Ingredient #4: Taurine

This is an amino acid that is very popular in energy drinks. Taurine can be found in dosages anywhere from 1,000-2,000 mg’s depending on the brand.  Some of the benefits of taurine can be the development of neurological functions which basically means that you will be able to focus better while taking it.

I have found taurine to be a great way to focus and stay alert.  As long as you do not consume more than 3,000 mg’s a day, then you are good!  When it comes to energy drinks, I have found that those containing taurine have been helpful in giving me the energy and mental alertness needed.

So now that you know what the 4 main ingredients of energy drinks are, I will now give you my unbiased opinion as to what the best ones are!

1.  Monster’s Low Carb Energy Drink: This product is a great source of energy as long as you do it in moderation.  It contains only 10 calories per serving and has ingredients such as caffeine, taurine, and l-carnitine which can yield great health benefits.

The only downside to this energy drink is the fact that it has some artificial sweeteners but as long as it is consumed in moderation, the pros will outweigh the cons.

2.  Super Charge Extreme: This is a pre-workout supplement that has helped give me an edge when it comes to getting toned and building muscle.  It contains caffeine, arginine, taurine, creatine, l-glutamine and beta alanine.  So as you can see it will not only help to give you energy before a workout but also help you recover and build a lean physique in the process.

Now you know which energy drinks are good for you to take and have some guidelines to follow the next time you purchase one.  As a final reminder, ALWAYS remember to never exceed taking energy drinks more than 5 times in one week and you should be golden.

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