Heavily sweetened energy drinks often serve as a quick pick-me-up for teenagers. They contain large amounts of caffeine that can give you a temporary energy boost before a workout or while you are burning the midnight lamp during exams. But these bright-coloured energy drinks are definitely not as innocent as they sound and pose certain health risks - caffeine being just one of them. They were first marketed to people as a drink that can boost your energy levels and help you stay up all night but now, you'll mostly find them on bar counters served with the alcohol of your choice. You may also find them as prepackaged caffeinated alcohol drinks in liquor stores. It is considered to be a popular party drink, but in the last few years, many researchers have studied the effects of drinking this concoction and have warned that it can have potential negative consequences.Many of them suggest that this dangerous combination makes you want to drink more by masking the signs of being inebriated while some have found that it can cause rapid heart rates, palpitations, rise in blood pressure and even seizures. It makes people 'wide awake drunk' which is a result of the contradictory effects of caffeine and alcohol. While one stimulates your mental and physical state, the other slows your brain down. A new research conducted by a team of experts from the University of Victoria’s Centre for Addictions Research of BC (CARBC) in Canada shows that drinking a combination of energy drinks and alcohol increases the risk of injury or fall. A major reason for this, as previous researchers have studied, is that these energy drinks that are loaded with sugar masks the effects of alcohol and therefore, people may underestimate how intoxicated they are.
The high levels of sugar and the stimulating effects of caffeine may hide the sedative effects of alcohol and in combination both work to damage your body and brain. The new team of experts looked at 13 studies on the topic of alcohol and energy drinks published from 1981 to 2016. Out of the 13 studies that fit the criteria, 10 showed proof of a link between drinking alcohol mixed with energy drinks and an increased risk of injury compared to drinking only alcohol. This included both unintentional injuries such as falls or car accidents and intentional ones such as fights or violent behavior. Thus concluding that it not only increases your personal risk, it also becomes a matter of public concern. In some countries, the sale of energy drinks is banned in bars after midnight.
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