Published On: Tue, Dec 4th, 2012

Popular Energy Drinks Linked To 13 Deaths According To FDA Report

Popular Energy Drinks Linked to 13 Deaths

 

(HealingTalks) The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has now linked two popular energy drinks, 5 Hour Energy and Monster Energy Drink,  to up to 13 deaths including that of  a 14 year old girl from Maryland. The news about 5 Hour Energy broke just weeks after similar reports surfaced for Monster Energy drinks. There have been additional claims of these energy drinks being responsible for incidences of heart attacks, convulsions, and in one case, a spontaneous abortion.

Five Hour Energy

Living Essentials, the company that manufactures 5 Hour Energy, has voluntarily submitted reports about these incidents to the FDA, (complying with a regulation passed in 2008) and claiming nothing could be directly linked to the energy drink’s two-ounce energy ‘shot.’

The director of the division of the FDA that specializes in dietary supplements said the agency is looking into the death reports to ascertain the exact cause and to determine whether or not the company will be held responsible.

Caffeine Content of Energy Drinks

Monster Energy claims their compact-sized energy shot product is not so much an “energy drink”–a label that appeals more to a youthful crowd–but a solution for busy adults. According to a statement released by the company, it is estimated that a single shot of Monster Energy contains as much caffeine as a cup of premium coffee.

Five-hour Energy does not list the exact amount of caffeine on their label. However, Consumer Reports has estimated the amount to be 215 milligrams/shot, about twice the amount of the average cup of coffee. For comparison, Monster Energy Drinks, which are available in 24-ounce cans, contain 240 milligrams of caffeine.

Consumer Reports has also reported that a two-ounce 5 Hour Energy will rid the consumer of sleepiness just as effectively as a cup of coffee. They stated, however, that little research exists to support the company’s claim that their drink’s amino acids and B vitamins could significantly help energy levels.

Death Reports

The autopsy report of a Maryland teen who consumed two cans consecutively before her death claimed that the excess amount of caffeine paralyzed her heart, making it unable to pump blood and thereby leading to cardiac arrest.

Why Won’t the FDA Regulate?

The FDA has said that it would be difficult to change its regulations of caffeine and other ingredients in such drinks. This is because there has been little conclusive scientific evidence of adverse effects up until this point. The FDA is investigating further, however some high-energy caffeine drinks, like Red Bull, are sold under the category of beverage and fly under the FDA’s radar. As 5 Hour Energy and Monster Energy have vitamins included, they are instead sold as dietary supplements.

Consumer Beware

The 5-hour Energy label and website caution individuals against consuming more than two bottles of the drink in a single day. Even so, these two should be spaced a few hours apart. So-called “energy drinks” are really stimulants from which one will later crash. Common side effects of the drinks include elevated heart rates, hypertension, anxiety, headaches and interrupted sleep patterns.

Study Finds Energy Drinks Potentially Dangerous

A recent study by the University of Miami suggests even more serious outcomes, such as heart palpitations, strokes and sudden death. According to new findings from pediatric researchers at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, those with a history of diabetes, seizures, cardiac problems or mood disorders should be especially cautious.

Their study, entitled “Health Effects of Energy Drinks on Children, Adolescents and Young Adults,” was published in the Journal of  Pediatrics after a review of current literature. The researchers concluded that so-called “energy drinks” have no real health benefits and may put some children at risk for “adverse health events” that can even lead to death.

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  1. It caused an abortion though? C’monnn! There
    have been deaths because energy drinks have been misused. The girl from
    Maryland had two of the BIG cans of Monster. One regular sized can is
    enough for me, and I’m 26. Teens should be carded for energy drinks, in
    my opinion.

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