RIVM logo, National Institute for Public Healthe and the Enviroment. Minsty of Health, Welfare and Sport

Energy drinks pose health risks for small group of teenagers

Publication date: 06 July 2018
Modificationdate: 09 July 2018

Of the more than 1.2 million Dutch young people between the ages of 13 and 18-years-old, 1 to 2 percent regularly drinks three or more cans of energy drinks per day. These drinks contain caffeine, taurine and D-glucuronolactone. Those who ingest too many of these substances may experience symptoms such as heart palpitations and dizziness. This is shown by research by RIVM.

The majority of young people who drink three or more cans of energy drink per day at least once a week also show other risk behaviour. They smoke and drink more alcohol than young people who never drink energy drinks. In 2015, about 80% of the adolescents did not consume energy drinks at all or less than once a week. Over the last years, the consumption of energy drinks has decreased amongst young people.

Specific attention is required from the youth health care and (paediatric) physicians for the group of young people who regularly drink three or more cans of energy drink per day. The monitoring of the consumption could be improved. In addition, it is important to provide information and to be wary of health complaints.

The RIVM study is in line with the current advice from the Netherlands Nutrition Center on energy drinks for 13 to 18-years-olds: Preferably, do not drink energy drinks at all or do not drink more than one can per day.

 

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