This is a common question that regular energy drink users have no doubt asked themselves many times. While I’m not proud of it, I have been drinking all types of energy products on the market for well over 6 years. This was due to my long-term insomnia and sleep issues and needing to stay awake on the job. You name it, I’ve probably drank it. I became so immune to the energizing effects that I began stacking an energy drink like a Monster Max Strength on top of a 5 Hour Energy Shot. Deadly combination, especially for everyday use.
I have always heard mixed opinions on energy drinks, some would say they aren’t “that” bad for you, others would say they are toxic. Which is really the case? So, I have put together an itemized post of my personal opinions and experiences over a 6+ year span of using common energy products.
Disclaimer: I am in no way telling you that you “need” to stop with the energy products, as these are just my recommendations. If you choose to continue with them, that is entirely up to you.
King of Energy
The kings of energy products are your common go-to drinks like Monsters and Redbull. There are many different varieties of energy drinks on the market, those are just the two main drinks I have spent years consuming. Monster offers a “zero” option, which supposedly has 0 sugars and 0 calories. Some might think that this equates to it being “healthier” for you but take a close look at the main ingredients. They remain the same. Sugar and calories won’t kill you as fast as the additional toxicity within the drink. Monster Zero will contain large amounts of Niacin, B12, B6, Pantothenic, several acids, citrate, and other ingredients that sound like they should be on the warning label of a nuclear missile. Let’s not forget about the 140mg of caffeine in this particular can of Zero. Other variations of Monster and Redbull flavors have well over 200mg of caffeine.
What This Does to Your Body Over Time
If you have spent many years drinking these products, I’m sure you have noticed the results of that. I began having stomach issues after my years of drinking them. That was just the tip of the ice-burg. I used to be able to chug several energy drinks without feeling any physical side effects; I became too comfortable in the thought that I would never have an issue with them. The damage to my stomach started to become severe to the point where consuming energy drinks would cause pain shortly after and warrant trips to the bathroom. I found my body became extremely sensitive to caffeine as well. Even consuming a large cup of coffee would throw my stomach out of place. Presently I am still having many issues with my stomach as a result of the energy drink consumption over the years. I have had to alter my diet and really watch what I eat now as well. It seems like it was just a matter of time before my stomach could no longer handle the energy drinks. It is almost like the toxicity had finally ate away at my stomach.
Keep That Frown Upside Down…
One word, teeth! I had not imagined the result of long-term energy drinks becoming a critical factor on my teeth. Since I would consume them in the morning on my way to, or at work, the acids would sit on my teeth for 10-14 hours a day. This started breaking down my teeth little by little. I had always taken good care of my teeth; however, it was not enough to combat how eroding energy drinks really are. $2500 later and several dentist trips, the dental issues were cleaned up and corrected. This was another wake-up call that I needed to stop consuming energy drinks. I did not want to further damage my teeth, so I turned to looking for ‘natural alternatives to staying awake’.
Stomach, Teeth, Heart… Oh My!
We’ve already covered the negative side effects that were caused to my health via my stomach and teeth, sadly there is more! It is a well-known fact that energy drinks can “possibly” cause heart difficulties within individuals at a high consumption rate. I too thought “Nah that wouldn’t happen to me”, well it did. I have had an onset increase of chronic chest pains during or after consuming energy drinks in this past year. The pain only grew in magnitude as the amount of energy drinks I consumed increased. I wish I could say I have since “kicked” the chest pain after ceasing all contact with energy drinks, but that is unfortunately not the case. It seems to have been a continual problem even after the fact. Much like the other issues it has caused me, they have not ceased to persist either.
Is there a higher risk of a heart attack due to the energy drinks? I would say yes. If you have been a long-time consumer as I have and have begun experiencing sudden pains that only worsen with time; I would be very careful. Your body is not ade of steel. Even if you don’t always “feel” any negative effects yet, it does not mean they aren’t going to happen or in the works of happening.
Was It Worth It?
I am now 26 and I have more health issues than someone twice my age, I ask myself if those energy drinks were worth it now? The answer to that is no. If I had not kept pushing the warnings to the side and stopped sooner, maybe I could have spared myself some of the pain and heartache. When we have young bodies, we sometimes feel physically invincible. We shrug off the warnings with a “I’m too young for that to affect me” or “I’m healthy as a horse, I will be fine”. Regardless of how healthy you started out prior to energy drinks, consuming them will without a doubt break your body down bit by bit. Each time you drink another can, you are adding to the risk factor scale. Is there a chance you could drink them for years and NOT be affected? Sure, there is no guarantee as to how long it will take to see the negative results. But you “will” see them, whether it shows up in months or years. Consistent use of energy drinks or similar energy products will destroy your body.
Once the damage is done, it may be too late to go back. Start looking for natural alternatives to giving yourself energy and the ability to stay awake. Your body will thank you for it in the long run, and you will feel 100x better!