Truths behind his ‘fame’ energy drinks In recent years, energy drinks have become the favorites of our young people, especially at night. The use and abuse of these drinks has been increasing, especially combined with alcohol, when they can be fatal.
Energy or stimulation Many athletes also use them to ‘rehydrate’ during and after exercise. In the 80s in Europe were the first energy drink created to increase physical endurance, provide faster reactions, higher concentration, be more alert, stimulate metabolism, and to avoid sleep and pay more time in the gym .
However, these drinks do not try to compensate for the loss of fluids and minerals during exercise, as the term “energy” used refers to a pharmacological effect of some active substances and not to the production of calorie nutrients, and this creates too much confusion.
What they have in these drinks?
Carbohydrates: Most of these drinks contain about 20 to 30 grams of carbohydrates, even some up to 70. Given its high carbohydrate content not eat them before or during exercise is recommended, because delaying intestinal absorption.
Carnitine is a component which acts on the fat metabolism. It is necessary for the oxidation of fat at the level of mitochondria of cells. Normally healthy people produce enough carnitine to maintain body functions.
D-Ribose: It is a simple sugar, axis of genetic material and the starting point for the production of adenosine triphosphate (ATP).
Taurine is an amino acid typically ‘non-essential’ considered. It works as a metabolic transmitter, detoxifying and accelerates cardiac contractility. It has been shown that low levels of taurine are associated with diseases such as cardiomyopathy, retinal degeneration and growth retardation.
Inositol: The body can produce from glucose, so it is not essential.
Caffeine: This is the psychoactive substance ingested. It is one of the common non-nutritive components within drinks and diets of athletes, and now found in energy drinks.
Ginseng is one of the most studied herbs for athletic performance and has several species. It is important to avoid mixing with medications such as aspirin and those who have anticoagulant effects because it could increase the effect and cause spontaneous bleeding.
Guarana: It is used as a medicinal plant. It contains high concentrations of caffeine and has been used as a stimulant and appetite suppressant, for headache, excessive mental work in the heat fatigue and recently for weight loss.
Mate: Tonic, diuretic, diaphoretic and powerful stimulant. At high doses can cause vomiting and diarrhea.
By consuming these beverages, must take into account the following:
It is dangerous to take them if not after physical exercise, since its energizing function accelerates the heart rate and may cause a heart attack.
The risk of a brain hemorrhage because it contains components that dilute the blood so that the heart pumping cost you much less so we can make a physical effort with less exhaustion run.
It is forbidden to mix them with alcohol, because the mixture turns the drink into a “Deadly Bomb” that attacks the liver.
In conclusion, the most appropriate term for these beverages is ‘stimulating’ and not ‘energizers’. Because, although some provide carbohydrates, the composition of many of them have more pharmacological action of stimulating type.
Nutritionally speaking, there is no reason to justify the use of these drinks, because caffeine can create negative effects that cause changes in behavior and some other ingredients can cause harmful effects in some people.