Reporting Steve Large
SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – It’s a beverage with a boost, but an alarming government report warns that energy drinks can also be more dangerous than first thought.
The report shows energy drinks are sending people to the hospital in record numbers.
With many options, energy drinks are the easy choice for the thirsty and tired. They’re supposed to give you a lift, but the drinks are also offering a lesson in moderation.
With names like Rockstar, Full Throttle, and AMP, energy drinks are designed to give people on the go a go-get-‘em attitude.
“During the middle of a shift, I’ll get tired and knock one down,” college student Allen Abrishame said.
A government study calls the drinks a rising health problem and has led to double the number of emergency department visits between 2007 and 2011.
The chief of Kaiser’s south Sacramento ER says he’s seeing a slight uptick in complaints of anxiety-related symptoms associated with energy drinks.
“First thing we ask them when they come in with palpitations and anxiety is ‘ have you had any energy drinks?’” said Dr. Jeff Rodgerson. “And, they kind of pause for a second and say ‘how did you know?’ “
The study is drawing quick backlash from beverage makers.
“I’m very excited with where the brand is going. It’s being recognized more and more,” Go Girl spokesperson Shannon Bell said.
The West Sacramento energy drink maker markets itself as a product devoted to health, even contributing profits to cancer research.
“Energy drinks, overall, are good for you. There’s nothing bad about an energy drink, but it’s moderation. Water, water can be bad for you in excess,” said Bell.
Go Girl debuted in 2006, and is sold in nine states with plans for nation-wide expansion soon.
The American Beverage Association criticizes the energy drink report, saying many of those who end up in the ER are also consuming alcohol or drugs.