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Energy Drink Eyed in 13 Deaths: Could You & Your Family Be at Risk? (VIDEO)

by Maressa Brown on November 16, 2012 at 11:30 AM

5-hour energyThat little tiny bottle promising five hours of energy without the crash you'd get from coffee or soda? It may actually be linked to other, much more worrisome side effects. FDA records show that over the past four years, 13 deaths have mentioned the 5-Hour Energy drink as a possible factor. And that's not all: According to The New York Times, the caffeine-vitamin shot has appeared in 90 FDA filings since 2009, more than 30 of which were tied to serious conditions ranging from heart attacks to a spontaneous abortion. Whoa! Crazy!

Nonetheless, the producers say they're "unaware of any deaths proven to be caused by the consumption of 5-Hour Energy." Hmm ... Still, this news has got to be enough to give even a casual energy drink consumer pause -- especially in the wake of last month's report that the Monster Energy drink could be potentially linked to five deaths, one of which was 14-year-old Anais Fournier who drank two Monster drinks in a 24-hour period.

But here are the facts ... According to Consumer Reports, 5-Hour Energy contains about 215 mg of caffeine -- which is not too much more than you'd get in a cup of coffee (100-150 mg). In fact, a grande coffee at Starbucks will run you much more (in the 300 mg range). And adults are advised to keep their daily caffeine intake under 500 mg, which you'd think 5-Hour Energy would be far below ...

Nonetheless, the drink also has high amounts of B vitamins and amino acids (like taurine, L-tyrosine, and L–phenylalanine), which are considered to play a role in energy metabolism and the effects of which, especially when combined with caffeine and sugar as they are in energy drinks, simply aren’t known. There's also a chance someone doesn't handle a dose of B vitamins or taurine or anything else in the 5-Hour "Energy Blend" very well. Or the entire mix could be fatal to someone who has a pre-existing condition (like the heart condition mitral valve prolapse) they're unaware of.

The bottom-line is that the FDA definitely hasn't established a definitive link between the drink and these deaths or heart attacks or spontaneous abortions. They're in the process of investigating it, and until we know more, seems all that's left for energy drink fans to do is know their own personal health picture and then drink at their own risk.

Are you wary of energy drinks?

 

Filed Under: energy & fatigue, general health

Comments

6
  • hello...
    --

    hellokd87

    November 16, 2012 at 11:33 AM

    As much as I used to LOVE drinking Sugar Free Red Bull, I am highly against drinking anything with the mixture of caffeine, Taurine, guarine, etc... You never know what exactly can harm your body. There might even be an underlying medical condition you have yet to get diagnosed. At that, any body under the age of 18, much less a 14 year old, should steer clear of energy drinks. Their bodies are still growing and this blast of caffeine can shock their systems. As a matter of fact, it can shock your system no matter what age. The younger you are, the older you are and the seemingly healthy inbetweens. It's just too risky.


  • Vegeta
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    Vegeta

    November 16, 2012 at 12:15 PM
    Also, sucralose (splenda) is poisonous to humans. And its in basically every energy drink.
  • amber...
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    amberdotsmom

    November 16, 2012 at 1:26 PM

    This is a personal responsibility issue - even water can kill you if you drink enough of it.  A lot of articles don't mention that when the 14 yr old drank those two cans she was drinking 4+ actual servings.  Another women was drinking 6 or more of the five hour energy drinks a day.  If we're going to ignore serving size, reccomended intake and all the rest we can't blame the product for the outcome.  Should these things have more warning lables and be very clear about their ingredients, side effects etc?  Probabaly.  Should we maybe make it so they can't be sold to people under a certain age?  Might be a good idea. 

    It doesn't seem like anyone could be ignorant of the fact that these things have severe amounts of caffeine and additives in them, they're not to be slugged down in mass quantities and they're not really any sort of decent choice if you're just looking for hydration.


  • the4m...
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    the4mutts

    November 16, 2012 at 2:39 PM
    I don't allow my kids energy drinks. Never will, even when they're teens. And I'm not worried for me, because I think they taste like shit, so I won't drink them.
    If you're going to use them though, I agree with a previous poster, who talked about serving size. No matter WHAT you're consuming, you need to know how much of it is "okay".
  • GlowW...
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    GlowWorm889

    November 16, 2012 at 6:42 PM

    I tried 5-Hour Energy once, and I will never do it again. I'm not usually an energy drink person, but I was really tired and curious. All I got was a massive migraine and a niacin flush. No, thank you.


  • Brian...
    -- Facebook comment from

    Brianne King

    November 18, 2012 at 4:02 PM
    I use to drink energy drinks at work every night. 5 hour energy shots did nothing for me but cost too much. I use to black out at my register around 6 am after working all night, which would prompt me to drink more monsters, red bulls, amps, NOS. About 7-8 months ago I decided I couldn't afford it, so I stopped drinking them. Within 2 weeks I stopped blacking out and I feel great at work now. That stuff is total junk. It bothers me when kids biu them but I'm not allowed to say anything or refuse the sale


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