As if the problems of unhealthy diet and high sugar intake weren’t bad enough, the drinks industry goes and invents something that concentrates the ill effects.
We’re talking about “high-energy drinks” – canned cocktails containing enough caffeine to wake a herd of rhinos, and enough sugar to rot every tooth in their heads!
But is the UK government finally catching up with others across the world and considering removing hem from children’s reach?
It’s a subject that Dr Alex Richardson recently covered on her FAB Research website.
Energy drinks ban?
“The UK government has opened a 12-week consultation on whether the sale of so-called ‘energy drinks’ to children should be officially banned – as is already the case in some other countries”, Alex commented.
“This would not only be in keeping with the governments recently-announced plans for combating childhood obesity, but also reflects public health concerns over the high rates of both tooth decay and behaviour problems in UK children and adolescents.
“A recent review found that for young people, consumption of ‘energy drinks’ – high in both sugar and caffeine – is associated with a range of adverse outcomes and risky behaviours, including higher rates of smoking, alcohol and other substance use.
Other negative side effects
“These drinks are also linked to physical health symptoms such as headaches, stomach aches, hyperactivity and insomnia, and can increase anxiety, agitation and impulsivity – especially when consumed with alcohol or other substances.
“Given the alarmingly high rates of mental health problems in UK children and adolescents, and the fact that energy drinks have no nutritional value, all the evidence suggests that restricting their availability to children and young people would make sense.”
There is much more on this subject over on the FAB Research website:
- Mixing energy drinks with alcohol could enhance the negative effects of binge drinking
- Flying high: kids in the UK are wild about energy drinks – but how harmful are they?
- Young people in the UK drink more energy drinks than any other countries in Europe
- Identifying ways to minimize the harm of energy drinks
- Energy drink consumption associated with mental health problems for teens
- Dangers of adolescent energy drink consumption for the heart: Cardiologists urge physicians, parents, educators to monitor adolescents’ energy drink consumption more closely
- Energy drinks raise resting blood pressure
- Energy drinks ‘should be banned’ for under-16s