Energy Drinks: Use and Misuse..Pt 2

  It’s good to know you are here again with me this week. So let’s kick off from where we stopped last week.

This week, we will be looking at statistics and nutritional facts or claims by the manufacturers and scientific facts.

Since their inception, the marketing of energy drinks had been tied up in the idea of excitement and rebellion. With names like “Monster,” “Rockstar,” and “Cocaine,” these drinks are marketed to appeal to those with a taste for danger. Red Bull, a privately held company, is rumored to spend 40 percent of its revenue on marketing, including sponsorship of extreme sports and spectacular stunts like Felix Baumgartner’s jump from the edge of outer space. Red Bull swore Baumgartner’s leap into the abyss was a serious mission to expand human knowledge, but like most aspects of the energy drink industry, the real focus was on showmanship. These tactics seem to have worked. The market for energy drinks has grown dramatically since the launch of Red Bull in 1997. Despite their premium price tag, energy drinks did especially brisk business during the recession; the market grew 60 percent between 2008 and 2012 in the U.S markets. Today, energy drinks are a $12.5 billion industry, dominated by a handful of big brands: Red Bull commands a 42 percent market share, followed by Monster at 37 percent and Rockstar at 11 percent. In the energy shot category, 5-Hour Energy boasts an astonishing 90 percent market share. Red Bull sells over 1.5 billion cans a year in the United States. Monster estimates that 8 billion cans of its product have been consumed worldwide since 2002.

Statistics available on Wikipedia says that   in the United States    alone,   energy drinks   market grew to $8 million per year in retail sales in 2001 alone   and   then   five years after, it grew by an average of over 50 per cent per year, totaling   over   $3billion    in 2005.  The   energy drink   market   then   rose   to   $ 10billion market in 2010.

In  Nigeria   ,  there  are  no   available  statistics   on  the  sales  and  consumption   of  energy  drinks,  but  findings  show  that  it  is  increasing   greatly.

There are many unusual ingredients in energy drinks. What do they claim to do?

Ingredients and  Scientific Evidence

Carnitine :There is no clinical evidence that carnitine use is effective for increased endurance or weight loss, but it may protect against heart disease.

Glucuronolactone:  Scientific evidence does not exist to support claims regarding the efficacy of


Guarana :  A major component of guarana is caffeine. Caffeine consumption has been

associated with increased energy, enhancement of physical performance, and suppressed appetite.

Inositol  : Scientific evidence does not exist to support claims regarding its efficacy.

Panax Ginseng     : Scientific evidence does not exist to support claims regarding its efficacy

Yohimbine HCL :  Although Yohimbine HCL may increase blood flow to sexual organs, there is no evidence that it increases sexual arousal. It may be effective at treating erectile dysfunction Currently no evidence exists to support the claim that use of this supplement leads to weight loss.

Taurine : Clinical evidence is insufficient to show that taurine is effective in treating diabetes     or epilepsy, but it may lower blood pressure.

Is consumption of these ingredients safe?

There are quite a number of these ingredients with insufficient data to show that is safe for consumption. Some of them amongst others are Taurine, Panax Ginseng, Glucuronolactone and Carnitine. While Yohimbine HCL, Inositol and Guarana amongst others are considered generally safe.

Here is my point, it is not bad or harmful taking an energy drink bu there should be a reason for it rather than indiscriminate use of it.

Furthermore, just a can is sufficient for you.

Got questions or contributions? Drop them here.


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Toluse Francis

Toluse Francis believes a healthy lifestyle is paramount for everyone. He is a long -time volunteer with Solid Foundation Teens and Youth Ministry. He loves to care for people. Toluse Francis is a Health Coach and author He is interested in seeing people eat healthy and get productive. He believes a healthy lifestyle is paramount for everyone.