running energy
Photo by Robert Ball

By Dr. Howard Peiper – Path to a Better Life

Energy drinks claim to provide people with increased energy levels that keep them active and alert. Energy drinks are sold in grocery stores, convenience stores, health food stores, bars, clubs, and in some areas, even schools. Are energy drinks safe and do we really need them?

Most energy drinks contain at least as much caffeine as a standard eight-ounce cup of coffee (80mg.). To put it into perspective, a 12oz. soda contains 18-48mg of caffeine. In addition to large doses of caffeine, energy drinks contain excessive amounts of sugar and legal herbal stimulants.

Children in school certainly do not need to be consuming any type of beverage that contains stimulants, particularly when they are combined with sugar. Despite manufacturer claims to the contrary, marketing of energy drinks is targeted to high school kids, and adults who are under the 30years of age.

Many of us might already be aware of the basic contents mentioned above, however we still aren’t exactly sure about the specific ingredients in energy drinks, and what effect those ingredients can have on our body.

Common Energy Drink Ingredients:

  • Ginseng – A root that is believed to help reduce stress and increase energy levels.
  • Carnitine – An amino acid that helps to metabolize fatty acids.
  • Gingko Biloba – Created from the seeds of the gingko biloba tree, it has been shown to enhance memory.
  • Taurine – A natural amino acid produced by the human body. Taurine helps to regulate normal heartbeats and muscle contractions. Its effect on people when consumed as a drink additive remains unclear.
  • Inositol – A member of the B-complex vitamin that assists in the relaying of messages between cells. Inositol is not a vitamin itself.
  • Guarana Seed – A stimulant that grows in Brazil and Venezuela, which contains high levels of caffeine.

Given this list of ingredients, it is fairly easy to see that energy drinks are a deceptive combination of soft drink and pseudo-nutritional supplement. The largest problem with them is that people tend to abuse them, drinking more than one at a time, or mixing with alcohol. There is becoming a high statistic of people being addicted to many of the energy drinks that are on the market today.

One of the main concerns with the use of herbs in these drinks is the source of these herbs. The manufacturers of energy drinks are not required by law to list whether or not the herbs they use have been sprayed with toxic pesticides, irradiated or watered with contaminated water, so there is no telling what toxins are contained in these drinks and whether or not these herbs will have negative effect on the body.

The caffeine that is found in energy drinks is dangerous enough on its own. Not only is caffeine addictive, it acts as both a stimulant and a diuretic. As a stimulant, excessive caffeine can lead to anxiety attacks, heart palpitations, and insomnia.. Caffeine can also make us jittery or irritable. As a diuretic, caffeine causes our kidneys to remove extra fluid from our body. If we consume energy drinks while sweating, these effects can be particularly dangerous because we can become severely dehydrated quickly.

What happens when energy drinks are combined with alcohol?

This combination carries a number of dangers:

Since energy drinks are stimulants and alcohol is a depressant, the combination of effects may be dangerous. The stimulant effects can mask how intoxicated we are and prevent us from realizing how much alcohol we have consumed. Fatigue is one of the ways the body normally tells someone that they’ve had enough to drink.

The stimulant effect can give the person the impression they aren’t impaired. No matter how alert they feel, their blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is the same as it would be without the energy drink. Once the stimulant effect wears off, the depressant effects of the alcohol will remain and could cause vomiting in their sleep or respiratory depression.
Both energy drinks and alcohol are very dehydrating (remember the caffeine in energy drinks is a diuretic). Dehydration can hinder our body’s ability to metabolize alcohol and will increase the toxicity, and therefore the hangover, the next day.

An Alternative to Energy Drinks

Optimal health and peak performance occur when our body maintains ionic balance (the exchange between negative and positive charges) and free flowing energy pathways (harmony) at the optimum frequency. A great alternative to energy drinks is a product called Body Balance wristbands. Body Balance has produced a system to safely restore and optimize the electro-magnetic balance within the human body, therefore increasing our energy and stamina. For more information:


Dr. Howard Peiper

Dr. Howard  Peiper is a nationally recognized expert in the holistic counseling field. His healing, healthcare and natural professional credentials extend over a thirty year period and include those of naturopath, author, lecturer, magazine consultant, radio personality and host of a television show, Partners in Healing. Visit his website

Howard, nominated for a Pulitzer Prize, has written numerous books on nutrition and natural health including 12 best sellers.

Create a Miracle with Hexagonal Water
New Hope for Serious Diseases
The A.D.D. & A.D.H. Diet
Zeolite Nature's Heavy Metal Detoxifier
Viral Immunity with Humic Acid
The Secrets of Staying Young
Nutritional Leverage For Great Golf
All Natural High Performance Diet
Natural Solutions For Sexual Enhancement
Super Nutrition for Dogs and Cats

Books can be ordered at:
Safe Goods Publishing.

Dr. Peiper is co-host of the award winning Television show, Partners in Healing. They feature guest in the alternative healing field including such names as Harvey Diamond, Dr. John Upledger, Dr. Bernard Jensen, Gary Null and Dr. Marshall Mandell.

Dr. Howard Peiper

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