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Energy drinks pose danger to public health

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Washington: A new study has revealed that increased consumption of energy drinks may pose danger to public health.

This effect was especially prevalent among young people, therefore, the scientists warned a team of researchers from the World Health Organization Regional Office.

Energy drinks are non-alcoholic beverages that contain caffeine, vitamins, and other ingredients for example, taurine, ginseng, and guarana. They are typically marketed as boosting energy and increasing physical and mental performance.

Part of the risks of energy drinks is due to their high levels of caffeine and is more likely to cause caffeine intoxication.

In Europe, a European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) study found that the estimated contribution of energy drinks to total caffeine exposure was 43 percent in children, 13 percent in teenagers and 8 percent in adults.

Studies included in the review suggested that caffeine intoxication leaded to heart palpitations, hypertension, nausea and vomiting, convulsions, psychosis, and in rare cases, death. In the USA, Sweden, and Australia, several cases have been reported where people have died of heart failure or were hospitalized with seizures, from excess consumption of energy drinks.

Over 70 percent of young adults (aged 18 to 29 years) who drink energy drinks mix them with alcohol, according to an EFSA study.

According to the National Poison Data System in the United States, between 2010 and 2011, 4854 calls to poison information centers were made about energy drinks. Almost 40 percent involved alcohol mixed with energy drinks.

The study published in Europe in the open-access journal Frontiers in Public Health.

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