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’s the Problem?
In our modern, fast-paced society, caffeine is a vital component of many people’s daily lives. For this reason, energy drinks have become a booming industry in recent years. And while few people worry about the dangers of consuming too much caffeine, most are unaware that products like Monster Energy Drink contain substances that can cause harmful side effects, particularly for the young consumers these products are marketed at.
Energy Drink Dangers
In May 2013, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) began investigating the safety of energy drinks after nearly 20 reported deaths and hundreds of injuries were linked to the beverages. According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), the number of energy drink related visits to hospital emergency rooms has skyrocketed from nearly 1,500 cases in 2005 to more than 20,000 in 2011.
Monster Energy Side Effects
According to the Livestrong Foundation, side effects of Monster Energy Drink may include:
- Stomach irritation
- Cardiovascular effects including tachycardia (rapid heart beat) and heart attack
Energy Drinks Affect Heart, MRI Scans Show
Energy drinks jolt the heart, straining the organ and causing it to contract more rapidly than usual, according to a study presented at the 2013 meeting of the Radiological Society of North America in Chicago. The study raises concerns that energy drinks might be bad for the heart, particularly among people with pre-existing heart disease.
“We know there are drugs that can improve the function of the heart, but in the long term they have a detrimental effect on the heart,” said Dr. Kim Williams, vice president of the American College of Cardiology.
For the study, researchers used magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to measure the heart function of 18 healthy test subjects both before and one hour after they consumed an energy drink. After drinking the beverages, the participants experienced a 6% increase in their heart contraction rate. According to the researchers, the unique blend of sugar, caffeine and taurine in energy drinks may have a cumulative effect on the heart muscle.
“We have shown that even small amounts of energy drinks alters heart function,” said Dr. Jonas Doerner, co-author of the study. “Because of that, further investigation needs to be done to address concerns regarding long term effects on kids and long-term effects on people with heart disease.”
Researchers Find Association Between TBI and Energy Drink Consumption in Teens
A new study reports teenagers who suffered from traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) within the past year were 7x more likely to have consumed at least five energy drink within the week prior to injury. Researchers also found that teens who reported sustaining a TBI within the past year were at least twice as likely to have consumed energy drinks mixed with alcohol than teens who reported sustaining a TBI more than a year previously. Click here to learn more.
Lawsuit Blames Monster Beverage for Teen’s Death
A lawsuit filed in Alameda Superior Court blames Monster Energy Drink for the death of 19-year-old Alex Morris, who died after going into cardiac arrest on July 1, 2012, according to CBS News. The complaint, which was filed by Alex’s mother Paula, alleged that he would not have died if he hadn’t drank 2 cans of Monster every day for the 3 years before his death, including the day he died. Morris’ suit followed another similar complaint filed by the family of 14-year-old Anais Fournier, a Maryland girl who allegedly died after downing two 24-ounce cans of Monster.
Monster Energy Drink Killed My Son, Dad Says
January 17, 2017 – A 19-year-old man allegedly died from a heart attack after consuming more than 3 cans of Monster Energy Drink in a 24-hour period, according to a lawsuit filed by his father. Dustin Hood collapsed face first on a basketball court after drinking the last can; his father claims Monster Energy killed the teenager due to “caffeine overload.”
Mother Wants Stricter Regulations Over Sale of Energy Drinks After Son’s Death
February 27, 2017 – A Florida mom who claims her 19-year-old son died after drinking just a half can of Monster Extra Strength is calling for tighter regulations over the sale and use of energy drinks by kids. Cheryl James is campaigning for the drinks to carry a warning for people who have heart problems, and also for there to be an age limit on purchasing the beverages, making it illegal for anyone under 21 to buy.
Army Issues Warning on Energy Drink Side Effects
January 5, 2017 – The U.S. military is warning troops not to consume too many energy drinks, saying it could do “some serious harm to your body.” A post on the pentagon’s official science blog last week details the health risks of energy drinks, citing a study which found that soldiers were more likely to fall asleep on duty if they consumed multiple beverages a day.
Energy Drink Consumption Linked to Acute Hepatitis
November 4, 2016 – According to a study published this week in BMJ Case Reports, the niacin (vitamin B3) contained in energy drinks may increase the risk of acute hepatitis. A previously healthy 50-year-old man was admitted to the hospital with acute hepatitis after drinking 4 to 5 energy drinks per day. Researchers determined that he was consuming 160-200 mg of niacin daily, or more than 1000% of the recommended daily allowance.
Monster Energy Drink Lawsuit Transferred Back to State Court
January 11, 2016 – A federal judge has transferred a Monster Energy Drink Lawsuit that was removed to federal court back to the state court where the complaint was originally filed. The suit was initially filed in Riverside County Superior Court by plaintiff Richard Marsh, who claims he was left with permanent heart damage after consuming 4 Monster energy drinks per day over an 18 month period. Click here to learn more.
Just 1 Energy Drink May Cause Blood Pressure & Stress Hormones to Soar
November 8, 2015 – A single large can of energy drink a day may raise the risk of heart problems in young adults, a study published today in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) has found. Within half an hour of consuming the beverages, levels of the ‘fight or flight’ hormone noradrenaline in test subjects’ blood also increased by almost 74%. Click here to learn more.
Do I Have a Monster Energy Drink Class Action Lawsuit?
The Product Liability Litigation Group at our law firm is an experienced team of trial lawyers that focus on the representation of plaintiffs in Monster Energy Lawsuits. We are handling individual litigation nationwide and currently investigating potential settlements cases in all 50 states.
Free Confidential Case Evaluation: Again, if you or a loved one sustained injuries, or your health has suffered as a result of consuming an energy drink, 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.