Maybe you’ve once tried an energy drink and it gave you a bad case of headaches and you never want to drink them again. But your pals have been raving on about how great energy drinks are and you’re thinking of giving them a shot again.
I hear you and I am here to help turn your not-so-good experience into a positive one.
Stick around as I walk you through all the frequently asked questions about energy drinks, from how they benefit you to a list of recommendations that won’t give you any side effects.
Let’s get to it…
Table of Contents
Is There A Safe Energy Drink?
Some energy drinks are healthier than others, but they still aren’t considered safe in the long run especially if you drink them regularly.
Energy drinks contain a lot of caffeine and sugar, as well as excessive B vitamins. Plus, energy drinks also have other ingredients that we don’t really know if they’re good for our bodies or not.
As for energy drinks that claim to be healthy, the term healthy is subjective.
Of course, energy drinks that have less sugar are better for our health, but ‘healthier’ energy drinks usually contain plant-based sugar like organic cane sugar or honey.
Some ‘healthy’ energy drinks contain sweeteners like artificial sweeteners, stevia, and sugar alcohols, which may be healthy to some but can cause negative effects for others.
The long-term effects of artificial sweeteners still remain unknown, though there are some studies that have suggested that sweeteners are connected to a few potential health risks.
So while there are no ‘safe’ energy drinks, you can do your part by only consuming energy drinks in moderation and be mindful of your diet.
Can You Drink Energy Drinks Every Day?
In my opinion, it’s okay to drink energy drinks every day provided you drink them in moderation.
If you really need the extra energy boost, it’s fine to have an energy drink to increase your mental focus or exercise performance.
However, I recommend that you have a look at the ingredients and nutrition facts listed on the energy drinks to check for the caffeine and sugar content.
This is to make sure you don’t go over the daily caffeine and sugar limit to avoid any future health issues. I’ll cover more about caffeine and sugar in the coming sections below.
Is One Energy Drink A Day Bad?
Consuming one energy drink a day is not bad but it also depends on how often you drink them and the brand of the energy drinks you pick.
Energy drinks with large amounts of caffeine and sugar are definitely not something I’d encourage you to drink on a daily basis. It’s best to consume energy drinks as an occasional drink to avoid any adverse effects.
What Are Disadvantages Of Energy Drinks?
Energy drinks can lead to several adverse effects and health problems if you don’t have them in moderation.
One of the most concerning issues with energy drinks is that there’s growing popularity of energy drinks among adolescents, which exposes them to large quantities of caffeine, sugar, and other stimulants from a young age.
The side effects of these energy drinks tend to manifest in greater intensity in adolescents and it isn’t beneficial to their development.
Here’s are several possible short-term and long-term adverse effects of energy drinks:
- Weight gain
- Fatigue and sugar crashes
- Kidney stones
- Caffeine addiction
- Respiratory problems
- High blood pressure
- Risk-seeking behaviors
What Are The Pros And Cons Of Sugar?
I don’t think it’s any surprise that sugar has earned a bad rep for being the main source of a lot of health problems over the years. However, we often forget the catch, it only becomes bad when consumed in excess.
A 2013 study discovered that sugar has some benefit for us in the form of glucose, which becomes fuel for our brains. This was proven in a 2011 study where it’s found that consuming glucose would be advantageous in increasing memory and executive functioning.
According to the AHA, the maximum recommended daily sugar intake is:
An excessive intake of sugar may lead to health-related problems like:
- High blood pressure
- Cardiovascular disease
So while it’s okay to indulge in sugar once in a while, it’s best to consume sugar in moderation, or you can opt for sugar-free energy drinks that are just as tasty and sweet as regular energy drinks.
What Are The Effects Of Caffeine On The Body?
This is because caffeine blocks adenosine, brain transmitters that regulate sleep, and causes the brain to release dopamine and adrenaline.
Besides that, caffeine also has been widely used to improve physical and mental performance. A 2016 study reported that moderate doses of caffeine enhanced cognitive functions like vigilance, attention, and reaction time.
You need to be mindful of how much caffeine you have daily though, for too much can be really bad for your health. The FDA recommends a maximum daily caffeine intake of less than 400mg for healthy adults.
Any more than that, and you might experience negative effects like:
- Digestive issues
- Muscle breakdown
- High blood pressure
Of course, this depends on your caffeine metabolism too. If you regularly have caffeine, you won’t face any issue with drinking a lot of caffeine in a day. But if you don’t, you may want to limit your daily caffeine consumption to avoid any adverse effects.
Is Caffeine Addiction A Real Thing?
Caffeine addiction is a real problem that develops the more frequently you consume caffeine.
According to Healthline, regular caffeine intake can lead to chemical changes in your brain, which is why you develop a tolerance after a long period of consuming caffeine. This also leads to a higher intake of caffeine because you can’t feel that familiar caffeine kick once you’ve built up a tolerance.
Naturally, you’ll become dependent on caffeine for your supply of energy and might find it difficult to stop drinking caffeine.
However, cutting off your intake of caffeine abruptly can cause a withdrawal, and that comes with a set of nasty symptoms itself.
In short, caffeine addiction is indeed a real thing, which is why you have to control your daily caffeine intake and sometimes switch with non-caffeinated beverages to avoid developing this problem.
How Do I Deal With Caffeine Withdrawals?
- Muscle pain
- Difficulty concentrating
You may experience these symptoms around 12 to 24 hours after the last time you have caffeine, and these symptoms can last between two days to over a week.
Though, there’s good news as there are ways to prevent these withdrawal symptoms. Some of the methods consist of:
- Reducing your caffeine intake gradually
- Getting plenty of rest
- Replacing your caffeine with other beverages like decaf coffee and herbal tea
- Drinking water
To know more about caffeine withdrawals, check out this video:
What’s The Best Alternative To Energy Drinks?
Water is the best way to keep yourself energized.
Inadequate consumption of water can lead to dehydration which can affect your energy levels as well. Make sure to drink enough water throughout the day to stay on top.
Sometimes the best way to replenish energy levels is to grab a healthy snack. We often make the mistake of substituting food with drinks when we’re feeling fatigued.
No amount of energy drinks can make up for a nutritious snack because energy drinks cannot provide you with all the nutrients you need. So the next time you’re feeling a little low, instead of reaching for a Red Bull, grab yourself some healthy snacks like nuts, cheese, or yogurt instead.
You might be surprised to know that exercise can actually increase your energy levels.
After a long day’s work, the last thing you feel like doing is going out for a run but exercise can in fact make you feel better.
Research has shown that more exercise leads to less fatigue. This is because produces feel-good hormones like serotonin, endorphins, and dopamine which will make you feel more energized and refreshed.
Best Energy Drinks Without Side Effects
Combined with real fruit juice, Bing Energy is a line of berry-flavored energy drinks made with mainly healthy ingredients.
Each 16 fl.oz can of Bing has 120mg of caffeine, an ideal amount of caffeine that won’t likely lead to many adverse effects.
Bing has a small amount of 9g of sugars so it’s not a cause of concern. However, Bing does contain 40 calories, which might be a lot if you’re on a diet. Drinking Bing every now and then won’t make you fat but you have to make sure that you’re consuming them in moderation.
Bing also contains a lot of plant-based ingredients like acai, flaxseed, and guarana seed that might be beneficial to your performance.
A can of Bing Energy costs around $5. A steep price for sure – but if you prefer something healthier with plenty of natural ingredients, Bing is the way to go.
Marketed as a zero-calorie performance beverage, Xyience is formulated with vitamins, natural flavors, and colors, and is aspartame-free.
A 16 fl.oz can of Xyience contains 176mg of caffeine, which is quite moderate for an energy drink of its size unless you’re caffeine-sensitive. If you’re new to energy drinks, it’s best to start with energy drinks with lower caffeine content.
One of the perks of Xyience is the wide variety of flavors it has, with all of them being fruit-based. It’ll certainly take a while before you get bored of Xyience.
A single can of Xyience costs around $4 – an expensive price, but considering the amount of natural and nutritious ingredients it has, I’d say it’s worth it if you don’t mind paying a little extra.
Matchabar Hustle Matcha Energy
Matchabar Hustle Energy is a unique energy drink that focuses on a formula consisting of organic and healthy ingredients. Matchabar Hustle energy drink contains 120mg of ceremonial grade matcha that’s grown in Japan to supply you with a clean energy boost.
Matchabar Hustle is sugar-free and doesn’t contain any artificial sweeteners, instead, it incorporates real fruit juice as a flavor enhancer.
The price of a 12 fl.oz can of Matchabar Hustle is around $3, which I find to be slightly pricey. If you’re a fan of matcha and prefer natural ingredients in your daily pick-me-up, Matchabar Hustle may be a good investment.
REIZE (10 Out Of 10)
Out of the many energy drinks that I’ve tried, I always come back to REIZE. It’s the only energy drink I feel I can drink without experiencing any side effects.
You may feel the same way too.
REIZE is a powdered energy drink that comes in convenient 4g sachets, which you can customize according to your preference, whether you want a strong or light drink. You can also mix REIZE with your favorite beverages like sparkling water and juice.
With a sensible 50mg of caffeine, REIZE is also sugar-free and has only 11 calories per serving. REIZE won’t cause you to feel any jitters, restlessness, or lead to a sugar crash.
And that’s not the only appeal REIZE has. REIZE also contains a special blend of ingredients like taurine, ginseng, and B vitamins that work together to provide you with a smooth and long-lasting energy boost.
The best part? REIZE ships straight to your door for only about $1 per sachet.
That’s excellent value for money.
Give REIZE a try, and you might agree with me that it’s the smarter energy drink without side effects.