Discover the most talked about and latest scientific content & concepts.

Concept: Energy drink


Caffeine in doses <400 mg is typically not considered arrhythmogenic, but little is known about the additional ingredients in energy drinks. We evaluated the ECG and blood pressure (BP) effects of high-volume energy drink consumption compared with caffeine alone.

Concepts: Randomized controlled trial, Caffeine, Energy drink


To investigate the sugar, energy and caffeine content of sugar-sweetened drinks marketed and consumed as energy drinks available in the UK.

Concepts: United Kingdom, Caffeine, Anarchy in the U.K., Soft drink, Energy drink


BACKGROUND: Cola is an extremely popular caffeinated soft drink. The media have recently cited a poll in which 16% of the respondents considered themselves to be addicted to cola soft drinks. We find the contrast between the apparent prevalence of cola addiction and the lack of scientific literature on the subject remarkable. To our knowledge, this is the first case of cola dependency described in the scientific literature. CASE PRESENTATION: The patient is a 40-year-old woman, who when feeling down used cola to give her an energy boost and feel better about herself. During the past seven years her symptoms increased, and she was prescribed antidepressant medication by her family doctor. Due to worsening of symptoms she was hospitalised and later referred to a specialised outpatient clinic for affective disorders. At entry to the clinic she suffered from constant tiredness, lack of energy, failing concentration, problems falling asleep as well as interrupted sleep. She drank about three litres of cola daily, and she had developed a metabolic syndrome.The patient fulfilled the ICD-10 criteria for dependency, and on the Yale Food Addiction Scale (YFAS) she scored 40 points. Her clinical mental status was at baseline assessed by the Major Depression Inventory (MDI) = 41, Hamilton Depression - 17 item Scale (HAMD-17) = 14, Young Mania Rating Scale (YMRS) = 2 and the Global Assessment of Functioning (GAF) Scale = 45.During cognitive therapy sessions she was guided to stop drinking cola and was able to moderate her use to an average daily consumption of 200 ml of cola Her concentration improved and she felt mentally and physically better. At discharge one year after entry her YFAS was zero. She was mentally stable (MDI =1, HAMD-17 = 0, YMRS = 0 and GAF = 85) and without antidepressant medication. She had lost 7.2 kg, her waistline was reduced by 13 cm and the metabolic syndrome disappeared. CONCLUSION: This case serves as an example of how the overconsumption of a caffeinated soft drink likely was causing or accentuating the patient’s symptoms of mental disorder. When diagnosing and treating depression, health professionals should pay attention to potential overuse of cola or other caffeinated beverages.

Concepts: Coffee, Addiction, Caffeine, Bipolar disorder, Major depressive disorder, Soft drink, Energy drink, Coca-Cola


Consumption of soft drinks is declining in many countries, yet energy drink sales continue to increase, particularly amongst young consumers. Little is currently known about the drivers behind these trends. Energy drinks are high in sugar and caffeine, and evidence indicates that regular or heavy use by under 18s is likely to be detrimental to health. This study aimed to explore children and young people’s attitudes and perceptions in relation to energy drinks in a UK context.

Concepts: United Kingdom, Caffeine, Soft drink, Energy drink, Coca-Cola


There has been recent interest in the ergogenic effects of caffeine delivered in low doses (~ 200 mg or ~ 3 mg/kg body mass) and administered in forms other than capsules, coffee and sports drinks, including chewing gum, bars, gels, mouth rinses, energy drinks and aerosols. Caffeinated chewing gum is absorbed quicker through the buccal mucosa compared with capsule delivery and absorption in the gut, although total caffeine absorption over time is not different. Rapid absorption may be important in many sporting situations. Caffeinated chewing gum improved endurance cycling performance, and there is limited evidence that repeated sprint cycling and power production may also be improved. Mouth rinsing with caffeine may stimulate nerves with direct links to the brain, in addition to caffeine absorption in the mouth. However, caffeine mouth rinsing has not been shown to have significant effects on cognitive performance. Delivering caffeine with mouth rinsing improved short-duration, high-intensity, repeated sprinting in normal and depleted glycogen states, while the majority of the literature indicates no ergogenic effect on aerobic exercise performance, and resistance exercise has not been adequately studied. Studies with caffeinated energy drinks have generally not examined the individual effects of caffeine on performance, making conclusions about this form of caffeine delivery impossible. Caffeinated aerosol mouth and nasal sprays may stimulate nerves with direct brain connections and enter the blood via mucosal and pulmonary absorption, although little support exists for caffeine delivered in this manner. Overall, more research is needed examining alternate forms of caffeine delivery including direct measures of brain activation and entry of caffeine into the blood, as well as more studies examining trained athletes and female subjects.

Concepts: Coffee, Strength training, Caffeine, Tea, Energy drink, Red Bull, Coca-Cola, Guarana


Background: Concerns have been expressed regarding the potential for caffeinated energy drinks to negatively affect mental health, and particularly so in young consumers at whom they are often targeted. The products are frequently marketed with declarations of increasing mental and physical energy, providing a short-term boost to mood and performance. Although a certain amount of evidence has accumulated to substantiate some of these claims, the chronic effects of energy drinks on mental health also need to be addressed. Methods: To review the relevant literature, PubMed and PsycINFO were searched for all peer-reviewed articles published in English that addressed associations between energy drink use and mental health outcomes. Case reports were also considered, though empirical studies investigating acute mood effects were excluded as a review of such articles had recently been published. Fifty-six articles were retrieved: 20 of these (along with eight more identified through other means) were included in the current review, and, because the majority addressed aspects of stress, anxiety, and depression, particular focus was placed on these outcomes. Results: Though a number of null findings (and one negative relationship) were observed, the majority of studies examined reported positive associations between energy drink consumption and symptoms of mental health problems. Conclusions: Though the findings imply that energy drink use may increase the risk of undesirable mental health outcomes, the majority of research examined utilized cross-sectional designs. In most cases, it was therefore not possible to determine causation or direction of effect. For this reason, longitudinal and intervention studies are required to increase our understanding of the nature of the relationships observed.

Concepts: Scientific method, Psychology, Coffee, Peer review, Mental disorder, Caffeine, Potential energy, Energy drink


Highly caffeinated energy drinks (EDs) are popular with adolescents and young adults, but longitudinal consumption patterns are poorly understood especially in relation to other substance use.

Concepts: Coffee, Caffeine, Soft drink, Energy drink, Red Bull, Coca-Cola, Guarana, Jolt Cola


Physicians and policy makers are increasingly interested in caffeine intake among children and adolescents in the advent of increasing energy drink sales. However, there have been no recent descriptions of caffeine or energy drink intake in the United States. We aimed to describe trends in caffeine intake over the past decade among US children and adolescents.

Concepts: United States, Poverty in the United States, U.S. state, Caffeine, Soft drink, Energy drink


Consumption of energy drinks by both recreational and competitive athletes has increased dramatically in recent years. The primary ingredients in many energy drinks include caffeine (CAF) in various forms, as well as taurine. The purpose of this randomized, double-blind, crossover study was to examine the effect of sugar-free (SF) Red Bull (RB) containing CAF and taurine to a CAF only drink and a SF, CAF-free placebo (PL) on one repetition maximum (1RM) bench press (BP) and the volume load (VL; repetitions x kg at 70% 1RM) during one BP set to failure in experienced weight lifters. Seventeen college-age men randomly received: (A) 500 ml of SF-RB containing CAF (160 mg) and taurine (2000 mg); (B) 500 ml of a SF drink containing CAF only (160 mg); or © a SF, CAF-free 500 ml PL drink 60 min prior to testing on three separate occasions. Following a standard warm-up, the 1RM was determined for each subject and, after 5 min rest, they completed repetitions to failure at 70% of their 1RM to assess VL. Differences between trials for 1RM BP and the VL were identified using repeated measures ANOVA (p<0.05). The results indicated that neither SF-RB nor the CAF drink had any effect on 1RM BP (115.13 ± 16.19 kg and 114.87 ± 16.16 kg, respectively) or VL (1173.08 ± 170.66 kg and 1164.14 ± 147.03 kg, respectively) compared to PL (1RM = 114.07 ± 16.09 kg; VL= 1141.46 ± 193.41 kg). Although the CAF content in the energy drinks used in the present study was low (∼2.0 mg·kg), the finding of no effect of the CAF containing energy drinks for 1RM BP are in agreement with previous studies using intakes up to 6.0 mg·kg. These findings suggest that SF-RB has no effect on upper body 1RM strength or VL in resistance trained men.

Concepts: Trigraph, Caffeine, Energy drink, Red Bull, Jägerbomb, Krating Daeng, Slow Cow, Dietrich Mateschitz


Since their introduction in 1987, energy drinks have become increasingly popular and the energy drink market has grown at record pace into a multibillion-dollar global industry. Young people, students, office workers, athletes, weekend warriors, and service members frequently consume energy drinks. Both health care providers and consumers must recognize the difference between energy drinks, traditional beverages (e.g., coffee, tea, soft drinks/sodas, juices, or flavored water), and sports drinks. The research about energy drinks safety and efficacy is often contradictory, given the disparate protocols and types of products consumed: this makes it difficult to draw firm conclusions. Also, much of the available literature is industry-sponsored. After reports of adverse events associated with energy drink consumption, concerns including trouble sleeping, anxiety, cardiovascular events, seizures, and even death, have been raised about their safety. This article will focus on energy drinks, their ingredients, side effects associated with their consumption, and suggested recommendations, which call for education, regulatory actions, changes in marketing, and additional research.

Concepts: Health care, Coffee, Caffeine, Alcoholic beverage, Drink, Soft drink, Energy drink, Beverages