Energy drinks and teenagers - Should they be banned? (2023)

As a teenager, looking at all the cool kids drinking a can of Monster or Red Bullenergy drink, you’ll probably want to be like them and grab a can for yourself. Energy drinks can give you the energy high that you seek and help you improve your athletic performance and focus for a short period of time.

Sure, energy drinks might be cool and give you a quick fix to your energy needs, but the potential benefits don’t come without some potential consequences.

Generally, energy drinks are safe to drink if you are an average healthy adult and consume no more than 400mg of caffeine in a day.

If you are under the age of 18 you should probably stay away from energy drinks altogether.

Table of Contents

Do energy drink have age restrictions?

No, there are no age restrictions on the sale of any caffeinated beverages including, energy drinks in the united states.

However, in England, children are to be banned from buying energy drinks. The restriction will apply to energy drinks with a caffeine content of more than 150mg.

Energy drinks and teenagers - Should they be banned? (1)

A single can of Monster energy drink contains 160mg of caffeine.

Well, it’s no surprise that a potential ban would target these highly caffeinated energy drinks. Energy drinks with high caffeine content have often been linked to causing health issues and behavior problems in children.

Can a 13-year-old drink energy drinks?

Yes, you can, but we don’t recommend it.

At the moment in the United States, there are no age restrictions on energy drinks.

However, in countries like England, teenagers are to be banned from drinking energy drinks. If you’re in England right now you can still legally drink energy drinks, but only those that contain 150mg of caffeine or less.

Once the law has been passed, the sale of energy drinks will be restricted to either children over 16 or over 18, depending on what happens in the course of making the proposed ban an actual law in that country.

I wouldn’t recommend that you drink energy drinks if you’re under the age of 18, even though it’s still legal in most countries. Who knows what it could do to you in the long term.

(Video) Are Energy Drinks Really that Bad?

In fact, energy drinks likeRed Bull were once bannedin France due to the potential health risk that it may cause.

Are energy drinks safe to drink?

Yes, unless you have a pre-existing health condition, energy drinks are safe to drink.

But, that doesn’t mean that energy drinks are suitable for children or teenagers.

Again, if you are an adult, energy drinks are safe to drink, butyou mustn’t have any pre-existing health conditions – especially anything to do with your heart.

If you’re pregnant or nursing it’s best not to drink energy drinks at all.

Depending on what brand it is, some energy drinks contain an ungodly amount of caffeine. Those are the brands that you should avoiding completely or limiting your consumption of them.

If you’re under the age of 18, I would strongly discourage you from drinking energy drinks due to their high levels of caffeine and sugar.

Both are known to be bad for the health of developing and growing bodies.

Can I drink energy drinks every day?

Personally, I think you can drink an energy drink every day if you are an adult, especially the ones that don’t have such high levels of caffeine.

If consumed as per the label instructions, you are very unlikely to encounter any health problems from a single energy drink per day.

Depending on what brand you choose, you may have some problems down the track though – lots of sugar is definitely not a good idea over the long term.

So, choose an energy drink that has less or zero sugar and a sensible amount of caffeine.

However, you should consider occasionally taking a break from them for a day or two. Too much of anything is never a good thing.

Effects of energy drink on teenagers

Energy drinks can have some potentially devastating effects on the health and behaviour of teenagers.

  • Poor behavior

    Energy drinks can cause you to become hyperactive and jittery. They give you a short energy high that can be very addictive. Most teenagers use them to stay up late until the early hours of the morning, sacrificing the proper sleep and rest they need.

    There have been articles that prove that energy drinks cause behavioral problems and poor classroom discipline in teenagers.

    The main culprit?

    It’s all the stimulants that are in an energy drinks that are the cause of it.Caffeine and sugar mostly.

  • Tooth Decay

    Reports have confirmed that energy drinks are bad for your teeth. The citric acid in many energy drinks can strip the enamel right off your teeth and leave dark yellow stains behind as well.

    (Video) Energy drinks and teens: Are they safe to drink?

    Energy drinks and teenagers - Should they be banned? (2)

    Energy drinks are known to cause tooth decay in teenagers.

  • Insomnia

    Essentially, energy drinks work by compounding a lot of stimulants that keep you awake and give you a burst of energy. But what happens when you turn to energy drink as your daily go-to beverage?

    Energy drinks can indeed keep you more alert when you’re tired. It’s like a double-edged sword, they keep you awake, but also stop you from getting restful and restorative sleep.

    The effects of caffeine generally last for about 6 hours (depending on your physiological makeup). This can mess up your sleep patterns, preventing your body from getting the proper rest that it needs.

    Over time, this could lead to other illness such as depression, anxiety or worse.

  • Increased blood pressure

    Studies have shown that energy drinks can increase your blood pressure.

    Consuming just one 16 fl.oz can of energy drink raises blood pressure and stress hormones in teenagers. Having high blood pressure is generally bad for your health as it puts extra strain on your heart and blood vessels.

    Over time this can lead to a heart attack or stroke.

  • Headaches

    Some people with high sensitivity to caffeine may experience a headache after drinking an energy drink. Besides that, consumingenergy drinks that are high in caffeine are also known to cause severe migraines in some people.

    This is because your body experiences caffeine withdrawal symptoms.

  • Weight Gain

    Some energy drinks contain a large amount of sugar. Consume too much sugar and you’ll be well on your way to gaining a few more pounds than you might like to.

    Energy drinks and teenagers - Should they be banned? (3)

    Drinking too many energy drinks that are high in sugar can cause you to gain weight.

  • Stomachaches

    Some people may experience stomach aches after drinking energy drinks. Personally, I often get a stomachache whenever I drink an energy drink on an empty stomach.

    This happens because caffeine encourages your stomach to produce more acid than what it normally would. That coupled with the way that caffeine interacts with your stomach acid is what causes the stomachaches.

    (Video) Energy drink risks for kids

  • Caffeine Addiction

    The constant feeling of energy surging through your body that you get after drinking a can of energy drink can feel pretty good. In fact, the high that you experience can be addictive.

    There have been studies showing that just 100mg of caffeine per day is enough to get you hooked.

    Energy drinks like Bang energy and Xyienceenergy contain a large amount of caffeine and can easily cause an addiction in a teenager if consumption goes unchecked.

    Caffeine addiction can quickly spiral out of control as higher and higher doses of caffeine will be needed to experience the same boost that you previously felt as your body adapts to thedaily caffeine intake.

What is in an energy drink that’s bad for you?


Energy drinks and teenagers - Should they be banned? (4)

Have you ever wondered what’s in an energy drink that makes it taste so awesome and sweet?


Sugar is the major cause of obesity in children and is public enemy number one on the list of energy drink ingredients.

Energy drinks contain caffeine which by itself is already addictive, but when coupled with a high sugar content, can lead to pretty devastating results. As we all know sugar is really bad for you, and many energy drinks contain tons of it.

If obesity begins in childhood, it is more likely to follow you into adulthood. This is because as a teenager we form habits which then become part of our behavior as we grow up.

Besides that, sugar is also known to be the number one cause of tooth decay.

The bacteria in our mouths use sugar to produce acid that dissolves the outer layer of the teeth (the enamel). Over time, this can lead to cavities or the stripping of your enamel, causing your teeth to become overly sensitive to temperature.


Caffeine is the ever-present ingredient that all energy drinks have in common. Without caffeine, there wouldn’t be nearly as much of a boost.

Caffeine in small doses doesn’t really do much harm to your health if you’re an adult (in fact, it can be beneficial), but teenagers are advised to steer clear.

The maximum daily dosage for caffeine for an average healthy adult is 400mg a day as stated by the FDA. However, there are no guidelines for caffeine consumption for teenagers.

Even in adults, consuming more than 100mg of caffeine can cause some side effects to their health. If you are under the age of 18, the high caffeine content in an energy drink can harm your still-developing cardiovascular and nervous system.

Caffeine as a stimulant affects your central nervous system and causes you to be more hyperactive. In large doses, caffeine can sometimes cause several health issues such as caffeine addiction, high blood pressure, anxiety, insomnia, and digestive issues.

What’s worse is that due to your body still developing, caffeine can take a toll on your heart by constricting the blood vessels which might lead to a heart attack or stroke.

(Video) Should Energy Drinks Be Banned for Under 16's? | This Morning

Citric acid

The acid in an energy drink (mainly citric acid) can have a detrimental effect on your dental health.

Mainly used as a preservative to prolong the shelf life of energy drinks, citric acid can also strip away the enamel from your teeth.

The enamel is like a wall of defense for your teeth. Once it’s gone your teeth become more prone to cavities and decay. Consuming a lot of citric acids can also cause you to lose bone mass and potentially develop kidney stones.

Energy drinks and teenagers - Should they be banned? (5)

Lemon is one of the greatest sources of citric acid.

Should energy drinks be banned for under 18’s?

I am 100% in favor of a ban on energy drinks for minors.

I think that a worldwide restriction should be placed on the sale of energy drinks, preventing them from being sold to children under the age of 18.

While I think that energy drinks are perfectly fine for adults to drink, I am concerned that the growing bodies and minds of children should be protected from caffeine and sugar as much as possible.

I think the rest of the world can learn a thing or two from what is happening in the United Kingdom with regard to the forthcoming energy drink ban to anyone under the age of 18. If people elsewhere in the world can continue to lobby their local politicians we may see similar bans becoming more commonplace in the not too distant future.

REIZE Energy Drink

If you’re worried about your health and well-being and are looking for an energy drink with a more sensible amount of caffeine that’s also sugar-free, check out REIZE Energy Drink.

Energy drinks and teenagers - Should they be banned? (6)

REIZE contains a sensible amount of caffeine.

REIZE is a powder energy drink that contains only 50mg of caffeine and 0g of sugar per serve. It also comes in a pretty cool looking sachet, perfect as a pick me up option.

The best part?

REIZE ships right to your door for around $1 per drink. Despite being low in caffeine, REIZE doesn’t compromise on the energy boost due to the inclusion of things like ginseng, taurine and plenty of B vitamins in the list of ingredients.

Just like any other energy drink, coffee, tea or soda (which are all caffeinated), REIZE is not suitable for children or teenagers, but it’s definitely a good option for anyone who is already older than 18 years old.

(Video) Do you let kids drink energy drinks?

Give REIZE a try today and you might find that REIZE quickly becomes your favourite energy drink.


Energy drinks and teenagers - Should they be banned? ›

Energy drinks are heavily marketed to kids, but energy drinks and kids don't mix. Some parents may not know that energy drinks can actually be harmful for kids' health. Most health professionals agree that energy drinks should be avoided among children and limited for adults.

Why energy drinks should be banned in schools? ›

According to John Vincent, the author of School Food Plan, energy drinks should be banned from schools. They are causing behavioural problems in the classroom and more children are becoming dependent on consuming huge amounts of caffeine to get them through the day.

What are 10 negative effects of energy drinks? ›

Side Effects of Too Much Caffeine
  • Increased heart rate.
  • High blood pressure.
  • Heart palpitations.
  • Insomnia.
  • Dehydration.
  • Restlessness.

What age should not drink energy drinks? ›

Are energy drinks safe for kids? Energy drinks contain high and unregulated amounts of caffeine. Normally, children and adolescents aged 12 to 18 years old, should not drink more than 100mg of caffeine a day, which is equivalent to a cup of coffee.

Why should energy drinks should be banned? ›

1. Fuelling excess sugar intake: Consumption of sugary drinks (including energy drinks) by children and young people is a public health concern due to the implications associated with excessive sugar intake, which include dental erosion, weight gain and the development of obesity and type 2 diabetes [1].

What are 3 bad things about energy drinks? ›

Some of the dangers of energy drinks include1:
  • Dehydration (not enough water in your body).
  • Heart complications (such as irregular heartbeat and heart failure).
  • Anxiety (feeling nervous and jittery).
  • Insomnia (unable to sleep).

What is the biggest reason energy drinks are unsafe? ›

Safety. Large amounts of caffeine may cause serious heart and blood vessel problems such as heart rhythm disturbances and increases in heart rate and blood pressure. Caffeine also may harm children's still-developing cardiovascular and nervous systems.

How damaging are energy drinks? ›

In serious cases, lots of caffeine can lead to seizures and cardiac arrhythmias. “Small amounts of caffeine are not generally dangerous to most people. But large amounts can increase blood pressure and accelerate the heart rate,” said Dr. Ruha.

How do energy drinks affect your brain? ›

Guarana (a popular additive in energy drinks) is also a natural source of caffeine. Caffeine is a stimulant, which means it increases activity in your brain and nervous system. It also increases the circulation of chemicals such as cortisol and adrenaline in the body.

Are energy drinks harmful to youth? ›

Energy drinks are not recommended for children and teens because of the amount of caffeine, sugars and other ingredients (like herbs and amino acids) they contain. Caffeine is a drug naturally found in the leaves and seeds of many plants. It's also artificially made and added to certain foods.

Why kids shouldn't drink energy drinks? ›

Energy drinks have increasingly become a source of caffeine overdoses, according to a comprehensive study published in Pediatrics. Too much of these stimulants and chemicals can cause dependence, dehydration, insomnia, heart palpitations and/or an increased heart rate in both children and adults.

Why are energy drinks bad for under 16s? ›

Some energy drinks have 21 teaspoons of sugar and the same caffeine as three cups of coffee. Research shows that children who drink at least one energy drink per week are more likely to report symptoms such as headaches, sleep problems and stomach problems as well as low mood and irritability.

What are the health pros and cons of energy drinks? ›

A few pros of consuming energy drinks are mood and attitude improvement, a better workout performance, a zero calories option, and the obvious energy boost. A few cons are they can become addictive, may cause health issues, weight gain, and sugar highs. Energy drinks can actually improve your cognitive functions.

Do we really need energy drinks? ›

Energy drinks can deliver on some of their promised benefits by increasing brain function and helping you function when you're tired or sleep-deprived. However, there are a number of health concerns with energy drinks, particularly related to excessive caffeine intake, sugar content and mixing them with alcohol.

Why are energy drinks healthy? ›

It's been shown to improve vigilance, reaction time, alertness and ability to concentrate. It can help alleviate the adverse effects of sleep deprivation. Caffeine intake also is associated with a reduced risk of Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease, alcoholic cirrhosis and gout.

What are the most harmful energy drinks? ›

Red Bull

Red Bull is known to be one of the unhealthiest energy drinks. But why? Red bull contains 151 mg of caffeine and 51 grams of added sugar (101% of suggested intake) for a 16 oz can. Along with that, it exceeds the percentage of suggested vitamins/minerals.

Do energy drinks cause anxiety? ›

Caffeine stimulates the central nervous system which increases heart rate and blood flow. If consumed in access, can cause anxiety, heart palpitations, agitation, and other physical symptoms. Dr. Page believes there are many healthy alternatives if you are looking to be more awake and aware during your day.

Are any energy drinks safe? ›

Most energy drinks contain 100–300 milligrams of caffeine per serving, although amounts can vary. Up to 400 milligrams of caffeine per day is considered safe for most adults.

What are five short term dangers of energy drinks? ›

Energy drinks' stimulating properties can increase heart rate (sometimes to the point of palpitations) and blood pressure, lead to nausea and vomiting, cause convulsions, disturb sleep patterns or cause restlessness, anxiety, or agitation, and, in some cases, even death.

Are energy drinks worse than soda? ›

But sugar isn't the only thing to worry about, and that's what makes energy drinks potentially worse than soda. This fizzy drinks contain high amounts of caffeine, as well as such other stimulants as taurine, ginseng, and gaurana, according to Richter.

What are the long term side effects of energy drinks? ›

Longer-term issues include tooth decay, obesity and Type 2 diabetes. And, energy drinks have also been linked to high-risk behaviours in young people, including smoking, alcohol and other drug use, fighting and impulsive risk taking.

Why are energy drinks addictive? ›

Energy drink is addictive because it causes the brain to release dopamine, the feel-good hormone. Energy drinks are beverages that contain high amounts of sugar, caffeine, and other stimulants. The most common uses of these drinks are to increase physical performance, improve mental alertness, and boost energy levels.

Is energy drink worse than coffee? ›

Is there a winner? Though energy drinks aren't all bad, coffee is the better choice. The potential health benefits and the ability to restrict the number of additives when it comes to coffee outweigh the trace amounts of nutrients and sugar crash usually associated with energy drinks.

What do doctors say about energy drinks? ›

Research has found that consuming high-sugar drinks of any kind can lead to weight gain and an increased risk of type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and gout.

Can energy drinks change your behavior? ›

Mental effects

In addition to physical effects, mental health effects due to consumption of energy drinks can include sensation-seeking behaviour, self-destructive behaviour, insomnia, problems with behavioural regulation and poor lifestyle behaviours, such as poor diet and consumption of fast food.

How can energy drinks cause mental health issues? ›

“Caffeine and other stimulants cause anxiety by mimicking our natural symptoms of anxiety, such as a fast heartbeat, racing thoughts and poor focus. If you're someone who already has anxious tendencies, these symptoms can be exacerbated by caffeine.

Can energy drinks stunt growth in kids? ›

That old myth was disproven – just in time for the coffee shop boom in the 90s. Today's teens have moved on from coffee to a new kind of energy-boosting beverage. Energy drinks don't stunt growth, but they have been proven to be dangerous to their health.

How long do energy drinks last in your body? ›

All of the caffeine is fully absorbed, your liver also responds by absorbing more sugar into the bloodstream. Taurine Vitalizes body and 44 FL OZ (250ml 5-6 HOURS 5. This is the half life of caffeine, meaning it takes 5-6 hours for your body to reduce the content of caffeine in your bloodstream by 50%.

Are energy drinks bad for your heart? ›

Excess Calories on Heart Health

Energy drinks – as well as handcrafted coffees that are full of syrups, sweeteners and heavy dairy products – can also cause harm to our heart health due to the amount of added sugars and calories they contain.

Does the FDA regulate energy drinks? ›

Energy drinks manufactured or distributed by American Beverage Association (ABA) member companies are regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FD&C Act).”

What is taurine in energy drinks? ›

Taurine is an amino acid found abundantly in brain, retina, heart, and reproductive organ cells, as well as in meat and seafood. But it is also a major ingredient in popular "energy drinks," which thus constitute a major source of taurine supplementation.

What energy drink was banned? ›

Prime energy drink sold by KSI and Logan Paul banned from Australian schools. Several schools across Australia have banned the viral energy drink due to its health risks for children.

Why was taurine banned? ›

Taurine is an amino acid that can lead to a positive drug test. Many of the most common brands also have a high amount sugar, which contributes to the that burst of energy. While caffeine naturally occurs in coffee, it is considered a performance enhancer and is banned by organizations such as the NCAA.

Why energy drinks should be banned for kids? ›

Caffeine is a stimulant found in plants that is added to energy drinks in high amounts. If kids have too much caffeine, it can lead to serious, life threatening heart problems. Children are at a higher risk for heart issues from excess caffeine because their body size is much smaller than adults.

Why energy drinks should be banned for children? ›

Too much of these stimulants and chemicals can cause dependence, dehydration, insomnia, heart palpitations and/or an increased heart rate in both children and adults. But in children, these symptoms are often even more extreme.

Why is it bad to drink energy drinks as kids? ›

Physical effects of high enery drink intake

Increased caffeine consumption in children and adolescents results in increased blood pressure, sleep disturbances, headaches and stomach aches. Selfreported injury due to hyperactivity has also been reported.

Why should students avoid caffeine? ›

Consuming caffeine not only interferes with regular development (acquisition of skills, emotional and social health, and more), it also instigates side effects that may have long-term health consequences if a child also has underlying health conditions, such as high blood pressure, chronic kidney disease, or anxiety ...

What are the long term effects of energy drinks? ›

Longer-term issues include tooth decay, obesity and Type 2 diabetes. And, energy drinks have also been linked to high-risk behaviours in young people, including smoking, alcohol and other drug use, fighting and impulsive risk taking.

Can energy drinks stop you from having kids? ›

There is no clear proof that caffeine affects the ability to become pregnant, but some studies have found that women who drink large amounts of caffeine may take longer to become pregnant and may have a higher risk of miscarriage.

What are the side effects of energy drinks on the brain? ›

Energy drinks can cause anxiety, high blood pressure, heart palpitations, and caffeine intoxication and withdrawal, in young people. And while adolescents may use energy drinks to study, long-term mega-doses of caffeine aren't good for the brain, she says.

What does caffeine do to your body? ›

Caffeine is a stimulant, which means it increases activity in your brain and nervous system. It also increases the circulation of chemicals such as cortisol and adrenaline in the body. In small doses, caffeine can make you feel refreshed and focused.

Do energy drinks affect mental health? ›

Increased Headaches And Mood Swings

High levels of stress, depressive mood symptoms, and suicidal conduct in teens who regularly drank energy drinks may be explained by the mood swings and irritability brought on by caffeine overdose or withdrawal.

Do energy drinks affect kids with ADHD? ›

Caffeinated foods and drinks may not provide enough of the drug, especially for people with severe ADHD. Taking caffeine alongside other ADHD medications can cause a stimulant overload, increasing the risk of adverse effects.

Do energy drinks make kids hyper? ›

Energy drinks contain large amounts of caffeine and sugar. Researchers say caffeine may be responsible for the association between energy drinks and hyperactivity, with the caffeine content of energy drinks far greater than that of soda.

Does caffeine affect puberty? ›

Researchers have found that caffeine affects boys and girls the same prior to puberty. Once puberty passes, caffeine starts to affect males and females in different ways. Overall, teen boys show a greater response to caffeine than teen girls.

Does caffeine affect children's behavior? ›

It can make children less aware of being tired. It can affect their moods and make anxiety worse. They can even suffer headaches from caffeine withdrawal. Not a lot is known about how caffeine affects a child's developing brain.


1. TEENS - ARE ENERGY DRINKS BAD FOR YOU? Be aware of health effects of energy drinks on your body
2. Push to ban energy drinks for teens
(12 News)
3. EXPOSED: Why Prime Drinks Are Banned in Schools
(Food Facts)
4. SC bill would ban energy drink sales to teens
5. Proposed bill could make it illegal for teens to buy energy drinks in S.C.
(6abc Philadelphia)
6. Are Energy Drinks Bad For You? (What The Science Says)
(Jeff Nippard)


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