Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) may sound gross but it’s a serious matter that many are suffering from on a daily basis. If you’re suffering from IBS you might have to pay attention to your food intake to ensure you’re not eating anything that can trigger it further.
But that means that you might have to give up some of your favorite food items, including energy drinks.
Now I know for a fact that many are dependent on energy drinks to get by day to day, so does having IBS means you really have to cut off energy drinks?
Read on to find out more as I’ll be recommending some energy drinks that might be of interest to you, that can keep your energy levels up but not costing you trips to the toilet.
Disclaimer: do not consume more than what your body can tolerate and consult your doctor if your IBS condition worsens.
Energy Drinks and IBS
I don’t know about you, but I’m dependent on a caffeinated beverage to kickstart my day. I usually get it from coffee or energy drinks.
Sadly, energy drinks can somehow trigger IBS and I shouldn’t be consuming too much of it.
However, energy drinks can be consumed even if you have IBS, if you are able to find one that is suitable with your condition.
You should choose one with a moderate amount of caffeine and sugar because both can potentially worsen IBS.
So pay attention to your gut feeling for a better gut health (pun intended).
Is caffeine OK for IBS?
Moderate amounts of caffeine can be okay for IBS.
This is because caffeine triggers your stomach to produce acid and stimulates your colon or gut which in the end irritates your bowel.
Therefore, high dosages of caffeine especially for those that’s more sensitive towards caffeine can cause a worse IBS situation.
Caffeinated items include coffee, tea, energy drinks, soft drinks and chocolates.
But this doesn’t mean that you should cut off caffeine entirely. Once again, it depends on your caffeine tolerance. If you feel caffeine doesn’t affect your IBS badly, you can still consume small dosages of caffeine.
Yes I know, caffeine is our source of energy and there are times that we really just want a caffeinated beverage to get through the day.
If you’re a coffee or tea fan and really want it but not wanting to trigger your gut, you could opt for decaffeinated options or weak caffeinated ones, like green tea.
Is sugar OK for IBS?
As with caffeine, sugar too in moderate amounts is okay for IBS. Consumption of excess sugar is what can lead to IBS as the sugar won’t be well absorbed by your intestines.
If you’re suffering from IBS, you’re most likely to be fructose-intolerant, and fructose is another term for sugar. Sugar-free items with artificial sweeteners (ending with “-ol”) too can aggravate your bowels.
Sucralose, an artificial sweetener actually alters the good bacteria and pH levels in your gut which can lead to digestive issues.
Therefore, pay close attention to the amount and ingredients list and be aware of all the pseudonyms that sugar goes by.
Are energy drinks bad for IBS?
Energy drinks can be bad for IBS.
This is because some energy drinks contain a high amount of caffeine and sugar, both are not favorable to IBS patients.
Energy drinks are also diuretic, which won’t be good for you if you’re having diarrhoea, cause diarrhoea causes your body to be dehydrated.
Energy drinks too can trigger side effects, like jitters, anxiousness and tummy upsets, all of which can potentially worsen your gastrointestinal conditions.
However, this doesn’t mean you need to abstain from energy drinks. You can still enjoy your energy drinks if you ones with a moderate amount of caffeine and sugar, suitable to your tolerance.
At the end of this post I’ll be recommending a few energy drinks that might interest you.
Can energy drinks help with fatigue from IBS?
Yes, energy drinks can help with fatigue from IBS.
Other than the tummy upset you get from IBS, it can also cause fatigue, loss of appetite, nauseous and vomiting.
It sucks to be in that situation, but there are times that you need to carry on with your day despite not feeling the best. If caffeine and sugar doesn’t trigger your IBS, then you’re set to gain energy from energy drinks.
Energy drinks could help you tide over for a few hours until you’re able to be well rested.
However, it’s also important to not drink too much energy drinks as caffeine and sugar can irritate your bowels.
Should you drink water if you suffer from IBS?
Yes, water is the best beverage to drink if you have IBS.
If you’re suffering from constipated-IBS, water can help your stools to pass out easier. And if you’re suffering from diarrhoea-IBS, water would rehydrate you well.
It’s good to always have a water bottle with you at all times and if you can’t stand the plain taste of water, add in some lemon slices.
Can caffeine help with IBS constipation?
Yes, caffeine can help with IBS constipation.
This is because caffeine can cause contractions in your colon and intestinal muscles to stimulate you to poop. This is more apparent for those suffering from IBS.
In which, if you drink a caffeinated beverage, like coffee or energy drinks, you are most likely be able to poop better.
However, caffeine is also diuretic thus might worsen your constipation due to dehyration.
If you’re suffering from terrible constipation, fiber is the best option to help with it.
Can I drink Red Bull if I have IBS?
An 8.4 fl. oz can of Red Bull energy drink contains 80mg of caffeine, 27g of sugar and 110 calories.
I think the caffeine content is pretty moderate for IBS, but the sugar content is a bit too high and might further aggravate your bowel.
It actually boils down to your body’s own tolerance and reaction towards caffeine and sugar. Therefore, if you find drinking Red Bull worsens your condition, you should not continue sipping it then.
There are other energy drinks in the market with different amounts of caffeine and sugar, that should be able to provide you the energy boost you need without irritating your gut.
Best energy drinks for IBS
Advocare Spark Energy Drink
Sugar – zero
Caffeine – 120mg
Calories – 15 per serving
Something to spark your interest, this energy drink is not only sugar-free but it also contains 120mg of caffeine, an amount that I think could work if you’re not that sensitive towards caffeine.
Advocare Spark Energy Drink too has pretty low calories and could easily be burned off with an afternoon jog.
You can order yours from Amazon.
Mountain Dew Kickstart
Sugar – 20g
Caffeine – 92mg
Calories – 80 per serving
Your stomach might just be churning at the ingredients list, despite a moderate caffeine content, the 20g of sugar might not sit well with you.
However, there are 2 sugar-free options:
- Ultra Energizing Original Dew
- Diet Mountain Dew
You can check the current price of Mountain Dew Kickstart on Amazon here.
XS ENERGY DRINK
Sugar – zero
Caffeine – 80mg
Calories – 10 per serving
XS Energy Drink seems like good option for IBS, as it’s sugar-free and has a moderate amount of caffeine. It not only comes in 18 different flavors for you to choose from but also with 2 caffeine-free options if you want to keep away from caffeine.
However, XS Energy Drink does have a high price point, with shipping, a single 8.4 fl.oz can costs around $3-$4.
Check the current price on Amazon.
REIZE Energy Drink
Sugar – zero
Caffeine – 50mg
Calories – 11 per serving
I personally love the caffeine amount that REIZE Energy Drink contains, 50mg of caffeine is a sensible amount that will still provide a nice energy boost without triggering my bowels.
Did I mention my favorite part of REIZE Energy Drink? It’s super affordable – only around $1 per drink, including delivery directly to your door – that’s amazing value, especially compared to the other options listed above.
Need I say more? What else is better value for money or better for you other than REIZE Energy Drink?