A six billion dollar industry, that is consumed in more than 164 countries is sending more people to the hospital year after year. In 2011 we consumed over 4.6 billion cans alone of a licit substance that is linked to hallucinations, convulsions and heart attacks. “From 2007 to 2011, the government estimates the number of emergency room visits involving the neon-labeled beverages shot up from about 10,000 to more than 20,000. Most of those cases involved teens or young adults…”(Daily News). Caffeine is a crystalline xanthine alkaloid. It is a stimulant and a psychoactive drug that is a stimulant to our central nervous system. Caffeine is extracted from the coffee plant, as well as tea leaves, and found in a variety of edible plants like gurarana berries, and guayusa. It has a substantial dependency and many people are classified as being addicted.
There is much negativity regarding this substance but some positive light shows that is might have protective effects against diseases such as heart disease, some cancers, and Parkinson’s disease. When insects consume some plants that contain caffeine is can paralyze or kill them, where it actually positively effects pollinating insects and animals by simulating reward receptors. Even though positive effects have been recorded negative effects are over whelming and are affecting adolescents. Caffeine can actually be absorbed into every tissue of your body and cause anxiety, increase blood pressure, sleep depravations, curb appetites, affect body temperature, and change gastric juices, as well as be a diuretic. The secondary effect is the sugar intake when consuming energy drinks. Sugar in energy drinks range from 20 to 34 grams and caffeine 77 grams per 8 ounces.
The most appalling piece of information is the target market is our adolescents. Some of the brand names are Red Bull, Monster, Rockstar, and 5 hour energy. In the last four years, over 13 deaths that cited the possible involvement of 5-Hour Energy alone have been recorded due to many of they side effects listed previously.
Energy drinks have a select target market, where as it used to be athletes, now focus more on younger generation. Seeking the “on the go” populations, and gearing their products and advertising to appeal to them. These very specialized groups include people such as gamers, extreme sports enthusiasts, and those involved in the hip-hop crowd. Advertising is projected toward younger male population, 13-20 ; with no ethic restrictions. The intended use of this drug is to help with exhaustion and low energy. Young people are especially vulnerable to persistent to these issues and it has great appeal to them. It is also marketed as dietary supplements which are not regulated and confusing to the mass population. Often energy drinks are confuse with sport drinks and have opposite effects of intended use.
Sources that our adolescents see most often depicting the crazy up beat life style that energy drinks accompany is,...