Update: Energy Drinks Worse for your Heart than Caffeine Alone, Study Finds
April 27, 2017 – A new study published Wednesday in the Journal of the American Heart Association (AHA) has linked the side effects of energy drinks to an increased risk for heart problems beyond those seen with caffeine alone. The researchers suspect that the “proprietary blend” of ingredients in commercial energy drinks may prolong caffeine’s activity in the body, prevent it from being excreted, or that these substances “may have activity of their own above and beyond caffeine.”
What is AMP Energy?
AMP is an energy drink brand produced and owned by PepsiCo. When it first hit the U.S. market in 2001, Amp Energy was distributed under the Mountain Dew soft drink brand. Since 2009, the beverage has been produced and labeled under its own stand-alone trademark name.
Energy Drink Side Effects
According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMSHA), there were 1,128 emergency room visits in 2005, 16,053 emergency room visits in 2008, and 13,114 emergency room visits in 2009 linked to energy drink consumption. Of these, more than 50% of patients were between the ages of 18 and 25.
Health problems linked to energy drinks, according to LiveScience, include:
- Heart problems – In recent years, the company that markets 5-Hour Energy, an energy drink similar to AMP, has filed about 30 adverse event reports with the FDA regarding serious injuries associated with its products, including heart attacks, according to the New York Times.
- Miscarriage – FDA has also received at least 1 report linking a miscarriage to consumption of 5-Hour Energy. Studies examining the effects of caffeine on pregnant women have come to different conclusions. A 2006 study on over 1,000 expecting mothers found that those who consumed more than 200 mg of caffeine per day were about twice as likely to have a miscarriage compared with pregnant women who did not drink caffeine. However, another study published in 2008 found no link between caffeine consumption and the risk of miscarriage. As a result of these mixed results, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) recommends that pregnant women limit caffeine consumption to 200 mg per day.
- Increased risk of alcohol dependence & injury – Studies have found that combining alcohol and energy drinks can be dangerous. Although caffeine is a stimulant, it does not counteract the sedating effects of alcohol. There is concern that mixing alcohol and energy drinks may keep people awake for a longer period of time, allowing them to consume more alcohol than they ordinarily would, according to the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA).
- Risk of drug abuse – A 2010 study published in the Journal of Addiction Medicine of 1,060 college students found that energy drink consumption in the 2nd year of college was linked to an increased risk of prescription drug abuse in the 3rd year of college. The researchers speculated that “energy drinks, like prescription drugs … might be regarded by some students as safer, more normative, or more socially acceptable than using illicit ‘street’ drugs.”
- Impaired cognition – Although many college students use energy drinks like AMP to study for tests, evidence suggests that excessive levels of caffeine impair cognition. A 2010 study found that drinking moderate amounts (about 40 mg) of caffeine improved performance on a test of reaction time, but consuming more (250 mg) worsened performance on the reaction test. Click here to learn more about the caffeine levels in AMP Energy Drink.
Study Finds Link Between Energy Drinks & Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)
Energy drinks may contribute to traumatic brain injury (TBI) risk in teenagers while also prolonging recovery, according to a recent study published in PLOS ONE. The researchers found that teens who suffered a TBI within the last year were seven times more likely to have consumed five or more energy drinks over the past week, and that those with a history of TBI from the previous year were also two times more likely to drink energy drinks mixed with alcohol. Click here to learn more.
Energy Drinks a Public Health Hazard, Especially When Children, Alcohol Involved: WHO
The World Health Organization (WHO) has voiced concerns about energy drinks, stating that massive consumption of the beverages is “poised to become a significant public health problem.”
According to the WHO, the problem is that kids tend to gulp energy drinks, whereas coffee drinkers tend to sip slowly. The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) figures 18% of children under the age of 10 consume energy drinks, as do about two-thirds of adolescents. When children in these age groups guzzle energy drinks, it can cause health effects including “heart palpitations, hypertension, nausea and vomiting, convulsions, psychosis, and in rare cases, death.”
Too Many Energy Drinks May Give You Hepatitis, Study Finds
November 4, 2016 – One man’s daily diet of 4 to 5 energy drinks led him to develop acute hepatitis, according to a study published this week in BMJ Case Reports. Doctors figured the hepatitis was developed from the excessive number of energy drinks, which contain niacin (vitamin B3). Each energy drink had 40 mg of niacin—double the recommended daily intake.
Vermont College Bans Energy Drink Sales Over ‘High-Risk Sexual Activity’
February 29, 2016 – Middlebury College in Vermont is banning on-campus sales of energy drinks, claiming they are linked to “problematic behavior” such as “high-risk sexual activity” and abuse of “intoxicating” substances, according to NBC News. The college said the beverages don’t encourage a healthy lifestyle for its students, and that “Energy drink consumption facilitates unhealthy work habits such as prolonged periods of sleeplessness, contributing to a campus culture of stress and unsustainable study habits.”
Just 1 Energy Drink Can Increase Blood Pressure, Norepinephrine Levels, Study Finds
November 8, 2015 – New research published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) has found that drinking one 16-ounce energy drink raised blood pressure and a stress hormone among young adults. Specifically, the study determined that test subjects’ systolic blood pressure rose an average of 6.4% and norepinephrine levels increased 73.6% after energy drink consumption. Click here to learn more.
Do I Have an AMP Energy Drink Class Action Lawsuit?
The Class Action Litigation Group at our law firm is an experienced team of trial lawyers that focus on the representation of plaintiffs in energy drink injury lawsuits. We are handling individual litigation nationwide and currently investigating potential settlements in all 50 states.
Free Confidential Case Evaluation: Again, if you or a loved one has visited a hospital emergency room after being injured by energy drink side effects, you should contact our law firm immediately. You may be entitled to a settlement by filing a class action suit and our lawyers can help.