Stimulant drinks are becoming the drinks of choice for many young people, and as their popularity rises, so do the sales numbers. Terry (2005) clarifies that energy drinks sales over $200 million in 2001, which more than doubled year 2000 sales of $130 million. These drinks are heavily marketed to teens as a harmless way to boost energy, but in reality they've been linked to serious health effects. The sales and consumption should therefore be restricted. 64
First and foremost, stimulant drinks often contain ingredients such as caffeine and taurine. According to Elliott (2008), caffeine is the primary ingredient in energy drinks, with most drinks containing twice the amount of caffeine as soft drinks. Elliott (2008) stated that taurine helps to dispose toxins and harmful substances more efficiently. But, excessive drinking of these will pose serious health risks. Freeman (2007) acknowledges an increased level of caffeine can lead to stomach problems, panic attacks, anxiety, and cardiac arrhythmias. 69
People who have high blood pressure might need to avoid stimulant drinks because a study suggests that they might interfere directly with blood pressure. An overview was provided in Sixwise (2008). In a study of 15 healthy volunteers who drank two energy drinks a day for a week, it was found that maximum systolic blood pressure increased by 7.9 percent on day one and 9.6 percent on day seven. Moreover, diastolic blood pressure increased by 7 percent on day one and 7.8 percent on day seven. Heart rate increased by 7.8 percent on day one and 11 percent on day seven. The adverse effects are significant enough to recommend people with high blood pressure avoid stimulant drinks. Stimulant drinks are commonly used as mixers for alcoholic drinks in bars and nightclubs. The fact that dangerous combination of mixing energy drinks with alcohol has proven heart failure (Terry, 2005). As shown in GO ASK alice! (2007), the effects of caffeine may allow the drinker to be...
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