Everyone who has attempted recovery from drug or alcohol abuse knows how hard it is to stay on track. When sober, relapse triggers are not the only traps on the path of the recovery. Frequently, we replace one addiction with another, such as a new addiction to sweets, coffee, gym, energy drinks and so on. But can any of these replacement addictions actually be justified positively? Let’s take a look at a replacement addiction to energy drinks to find out the answer to this question.
A common belief is that consuming energy drinks is good because they give you an extra burst of energy and help you to recover faster after strenuous exercise due to the high amount of caffeine and carbs they contain. Also, some find that energy beverages can be more affordable than buying coffee from specialty coffee shops and it is a win-win because they come in different flavors.
However, not many energy drink consumers take into consideration the possibilities of negative consequences. These beverages, besides containing large doses of caffeine, have vast amounts and varieties of other ingredients which means there can be more side effects than from just the caffeine itself.
1. Energy drinks are addictive. When you are unable to have your regular daily dosage of energy beverage, you may find this leading to a complete inability to function, increased anxiety levels and/or a deep indifference to what is happening around you.
2. Energy drinks cause heart issues. First and foremost, too many energy drinks in a short period of time may cause abnormalities in heart rhythm, cardiac arrest and even be lethal. Moreover, extensive caffeine consumption brings about the risk of high blood pressure and hypertension, and may result in a stroke.
3. Energy drinks may lead to insomnia. When abused, their consumption leads to missing sleep on regular basis. Constant insomnia makes a person feel nervous and not capable of functioning unless a stimulant is provided. Accordingly, productivity is lessened and the capability of the brain to cope with tasks on its own become almost non-existent. Frequently, constant headaches and migraines follow the heavy use of energy drinks.
4. Energy drinks damage your liver. Aside from just caffeine and sugar, energy drinks may also contain large amounts of various sweeteners. Excessive amounts of those do not get processed well by liver, and can lead to ‘fatty liver,’ which is an abnormal accumulation of fat that can progress to scarring and liver damage. Moreover, acute hepatitis (inflammation of the liver) or liver cancer could follow an uncontrolled energy beverage consumption simply because the liver is not able to handle huge amounts of caffeine and sweeteners.
5. Energy drinks destroy your kidneys. The huge amount of artificial flavors and sweeteners which are usually added to energy beverages increases blood sugar levels. Continuous high blood sugar heavily damages the microscopic blood vessels in the kidneys, which may result in kidney failure. Moreover, if you are consuming large amounts of energy drinks instead of water, this can lead to the general dehydration of the body, which contributes to the formation of kidney stones.
The above mentioned are the most common types of harm caused by a habit of heavy energy drink consumption. By the look of things, energy drinks are not the best option when already having battled drug or alcohol addiction.
“Energy drinks like Red Bull may give you wings for the moment, but in time it takes away your basic physical and mental wellness and leads to disastrous psychiatric and physiological conditions.” ― Abhijit Naskar