Energy Drinks pump you up! They get you going. You see a lot of ads for energy drinks ranging from how they can help you improve your performance in extreme sports and how they can give you energy to get you through a long work day. Without even thinking about it, most people reach for the energy drink as an afternoon pick me up and or a morning booster. But what are the side effects? Energy drinks are not only super high in caffeine, but they are loaded with sugar to further increase the buzz, as well as some questionable chemicals.
The most active ingredient in energy drinks is caffeine. While some brands have just 50 milligrams, others pack as much as 215 mg. To put that in perspective, an average 8-ounce cup of coffee contains roughly 100 mg and most experts advise limiting your caffeine to 400 mg a day max. – http://www.eatingwell.com/nutrition_health/nutrition_news_information/energy_crisis
But, the trouble with this is it might actually be harder to find out exactly how much caffeine is in the energy drink you are drinking because manufacturers are not required to list exactly how much caffeine is in the drink.
So, if you’re choosing to drink energy drinks, here are some things to remember.
1. The sensation of a racing, skipping heart, is unpleasant at best. But in more serious circumstances, this can actually lead to heart attacks. Mostly over 40’s but it can also happen with those who are extremely sensitive to caffeine. Be aware of your tolerance level before you chug down an energy drink.
2. If you have ever drank too much caffeine, you have probably experienced the sensations of trembling hands or limbs (also known as tremors). A lot of people will feel tremors as a result of drinking too many energy drinks. But many, mostly over 40, are so sensitive to the effects of energy drinks, that they actually have to go to the emergency room thinking they are suffering from more severe conditions. The truth is, however, this can become a severe condition and this feeling should be avoided, and can be, by limiting your intake of these type of beverages.
3. Energy drinks can also have a negative impact on your mood. Like a drug, you experience a high and a come-down. This can cause harsh reactions, negative thoughts, and sudden outbursts upon the come-down.
4. Obviously, drinking copious amounts of caffeine also contributes to sleeplessness which is known as insomnia. And after a restless night, this factor only fuels the need for another energy drink to get you going the next morning.
5. Heart complications can occur with the combination of caffeine, sugar and taurine. While caffeine is consumed every day and can cause a more alert sense of state, it’s advised that children or older adults with pre-existing heart conditions shouldn’t consume energy drinks as they negatively affect heart function.
Alternatives to energy drinks:
There is an alternative side to energy creating drinks. While we don’t recommend the high sugar, high chemical drinks most associated with our daily lives, we do think there are safe ways to get that pick-me-up that’s so desired.
1. Drink more Water!
If there is one thing that I would like to engrain the minds of all my readers, it’s the fact that Water is the worlds greatest energy drink. All of our body’s chemical reactions require water to happen. Without water, we become dehydrate making us feel tired. With enough water, our bodies function correctly making us have more energy and thrive in the way nature intended. Please remember to drink 8-10 glasses of water per day. Our best tip is to find a BPA free water bottle that has measuring units on the side so that you can keep track of and ensure that you are consuming the proper amount per day. Trust me. Try it and I guarantee you will feel amazing!
2. Green Tea
Skip that afternoon cup of coffee. Green tea has a smaller amount of caffeine, so it will give you the slight lift you need, but won’t make you feel jittery like that 3rd cup of coffee. It’s also shown in certain studies that Green tea is actually full of antioxidants and can reduce the risk of heart disease. Healthy and uplifting.
It may sound too simple to believe, but lack of oxygen to the brain can cause us to feel tired and cranky. If you’re feeling tired and want to skip the afternoon caffeinated beverage, try finding a quiet place and taking full deep breaths all the way in to the lungs. The increase in oxygen to the brain will create an instant uplifting feeling and will help you have a more longstanding bursts of energy. This is my go to trick during a long work day. Especially if I can’t make it to the break room. 🙂
4. Try Vasper!
A form of exercise that stimulates the body naturally without the use of chemicals or additives. A natural way to give you additional energy and balance your hormones in just 20 minutes!
5. Get some sleep!
Getting regular sleep between the hours of 10pm-2pm will dramatically improve your energy level and your body’s ability to heal. Try some relaxing chamomile tea and a great bedtime story to put you to sleep!