Are You Addicted to Monster Energy Drinks?
So Many Choices...These Drinks Are In Every Store
Who Is Drinking Energy Drinks?
It's estimated that about 50 percent of young adults use energy drinks on a regular basis. That's about half the population of young people. It represents billions of dollars in revenue for the manufacturers of these drinks. But are these energy drinks safe? And how many energy drinks should you drink daily? Here are some signs you might be addicted to energy drinks:
- Do you get a headache when you don't have caffeine?
- Do you need the caffeine in energy drinks just to feel normal?
- Does not getting your "fix" leave you angry at the world? Irritable? Worse?
A Growing Addiction: My Story
Energy drinks are primarily targeted toward teens and young adults. Marketing of these drinks is aimed at men ages 18 to 34. Red Bull and other energy drink brands sponsor extreme sports competitions and music festivals. What was I, a thirty-seven year old female doing guzzling these drinks on a daily basis? And why did they turn me from an easy-going, laid-back person into an irritable witch? If my boyfriend tried to tell me I didn't "need" energy drinks to function, I would lash out at him in anger. I would become downright hostile and purposely pick fights. I even daydreamed about throwing him out of the car during one especially bad episode.
My boyfriend has tried to convince me that I don't need these drinks. I've heard his arguments many times. I've even quit drinking them only to get the "urge" days or months later. I've even lied to him, telling him I no longer drink them so I won't have to hear his well-meaning lectures. He doesn't understand why I get such a rush from these fruity drinks. It's not easy for me to explain. It's a lot like a rush or a "high" associated with drug use. The best par is, energy drinks are legal. They can be purchased in any gas station, grocery or drugstore. Young kids are drinking this stuff.
I Liked The Rush I Got From Monster
I started drinking a Monster in the afternoon as a pick-me-up before heading to work at my night job. I was a property manager by day and have worked two and three jobs my entire life. On weekends, I comb thrift stores buying jeans and top brand clothing to flip on EBay. I tend toward extreme behavior. I love the buzz of feeling like I can accomplish any task on my long to-do list. So my daily fix, which originally started with one can of Monster Energy soongrew to two. Pretty soon, I even started skipping my morning coffee and replacing that with a nice cold Monster on my drive to work. I woke up wanting an ice-cold Monster.
My Monster Problem: One Can Wasn't Enough to Get Going
Even though Monster energy drinks are labeled as two serving sizes per can, most consumers drink them down in one sitting. As my body developed a tolerance for this sweet juice, I began to feel one can was not enough to get my blood pumping. I began drinking two cans at a time. I would sometimes even pour the can into my travel mug to avoid unwanted lectures about the dangers of Monster. I felt like I had to hide what I was doing from friends and family.
What's In Monster Energy Drinks?
These fruity-tasting beverages are a combination of:
- Vitamin Supplements
- Taurine (a nonessential amino acid that makes the heart beat stronger and faster)
- Ginseng and Other Herbs
Pros and Cons of Energy Drinks
- Caffeine helps you feel more alert
- Boosts physical and mental performance
- Elevates your Mood
- gives you the jitters (feel jumpy, twitchy, restless)
- Rapid pulse or abnormal heart rhythms
- Elevated blood pressure
Do you drink energy drinks regularly?
How often should you consume energy drinks?
Red Bull Banned in Europe After Deaths Cited
After several deaths linked to Red Bull consumption in Europe, Norway, Denmark and France have passed legislation banning Red Bull sales in shops. Red Bull can only be purchased in pharmacies in those countries and is labeled as a medicine, rather than a drink.
Cardiac Arrhythmia Due to Caffeine Toxicity in Death of Anais Fournier
Fourteen years old Anais Fournier died after she drank two 24 ounce cans of Monster on consecutive days. Fournier had an existing heart valve condition called Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome. The amount of caffeine she consumed was 480 mg. Wendy Cross and, the girl's mother, filed a lawsuit against Monster Beverages, claiming the company failed to warn consumers of the risksof energy drinks.
Is 5 Hour Energy Safe?
Monster Energy is not the only energy drink that has been cited in deaths. 5 Hour Energy, sold in small bottles best described as shots, has had plenty of bad press as well. There are at least 13 deaths linked to 5 Hour Energy. 5 Hour Energy has also been linked to heart attacks, convulsions and one spontaneous abortion.
5 Hour Energy is made by a company called Living Essentials. 5 Hour Energy does not gear its marketing efforts at children and teens, as Monster does.
A small bottle of 5 Hour Energy contains 215 mg of caffeine per 2 fl oz bottle. Monster and Rockstar contain 160-175 mg of caffeine. In the United States, caffeine labeling is not mandated because these drinks are considered supplements. The link between energy drinks and seizures has not been proven. In 2005 there were 1,494 visits to the ER associated with consuming energy drinks. In 2007, the number of ER visits resulting from overconsumption of energy drinks jumped to 10,068 visits. These drinks can be psychologically and emotionally addicting. High-caffeine energy drinks can cause sleep problems, dehydration and possible long-term anxiety issues, according to one Phoenix doctor.
Despite possible dangers, young people and adults are drawn to these energy drinks. Energy drinks represent "unleashing" your rebellious, wild side and engaging in risk-taking behavior. Monster Energy is the leading edgy drink in the US, with 39 percent of the market. Austrian based Red Bull is a bit pricier and boasts a higher revenue.
A Nation of Energy Drink Lovers
Should You Try To Warn Your Kids About The Dangers?
These drinks are targeted at young people. These young adults like to think of themselves as wild, reckless and rebellious. The last thing teenagers want to hear is how dangerous these drinks are. Forget trying to warn your kids about the evils of overconsumption of caffeine. This will make them want to drink MORE of the syrupy sweet drinks.
Signs of a Caffeine Overdose
- Breathing difficulties
- Irregular Heartbeat
Large amounts of caffeine can increase the size of your prostate. Other caffeine adverse reactions include tremors, abdominal pain and possible risk of spontaneous abortion.
Addicted to Energy Drinks
What To Do If You're Addicted to Energy Drinks
- Don't try to stop cold turkey. The mere thought of quitting altogether can be overwhelming.
- Set a limit for yourself. Tell yourself you can have two drinks per day. Focus on enjoying those times, instead of daydreaming about more and more.
- Know your triggers. If certain friends consume large amounts of energy drinks, and you know you are more likely to drink when you're around those people, limit the time you spend with them until your addiction is under control.
- Get help. Talk to a trusted friend or counselor. Conquering addiction means being totally honest. Hiding your consumption from loved ones keeps you sick and them in denial. Commit to a new policy of complete honesty.
Caffeine Content in Energy Drinks
Monster Zero Ultra
10 Hour Energy
My Monster Energy Drink Addiction
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