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0 Energy Drinks

Esiuol5 to Nutrition — Tags:  

I have never bought an Energy Drink nor have I ever consumed an energy drink. Thus I should not be writing about Energy Drinks. However Energy Drinks have become   very popular in recent  years.  In the U.S., in 2000, the energy drink market was worth US$350 million. The industry grew by 60 percent between 2008 and 2012 in the   U.S. – by 2012 U.S. sales were over US$ 12.5 Billion.*

Energy drinks are a type of beverage containing stimulant drugs, usually containing caffeine.  They may or may not contain sugar or other sweeteners, herbal extracts,       taurine and amino acids.  Coffee, tea and some drinks like cola contain caffeine but are not considered energy drinks. Energy drinks have the effects that caffeine and sugar   provide, but there is little evidence that the other ingredients have any effect. Energy drinks are marketed to provide mental and physical stimulation as “energy” but   distinct from food energy. *

Most of the effects of energy drinks on cognitive performance, such as increased attention and reaction speed, are primarily due to the presence of caffeine.  Advertising for energy drinks usually feature increased muscle strength and endurance, but there is little evidence and there is no scientific consensus to support these statements.  There is no good evidence that the other ingredients in energy drinks provide benefits. The dietary supplements may be advertised that they provide detoxification, sustain mental process, protect heart health and reduce muscle fatigue. There is no good evidence to back these claims. *

A caffeine intake of 400 mg per day is considered safe for adults.  Adverse effects associated with caffeine consumption in amounts greater than 400 mg include nervousness, irritability, sleeplessness, increased urination, abnormal heart rhythms and dyspepsia.*

Use of alcohol and caffeine at the same time may increase rate of alcohol-related injury.  Energy drinks can mask the influence of alcohol and a person may misinterpret their actual level of intoxication. Energy drinks can blunt the feeling of intoxication and may lead to heavier drinking and thus alcohol-related injuries. Both caffeine and alcohol are diuretics and may cause dehydration and the use of a stimulant (caffeine) and a depressant (alcohol) at the same time, sends mixed messages to the nervous system and may cause increased heart rate and palpitation.*

Excessive or repeated consumption of energy drinks can lead to cardiac problems and psychiatric conditions like anxiety.  In Europe, energy drinks containing taurine and caffeine have been linked with the deaths of athletes.*


Some persons should never use energy drinks such as persons with heart disease or high blood pressure. Others may also want to avoid or limit the amount of energy drinks – teenagers, pregnant and breast-feeding women, and young children.

The dangers of energy drinks are being recognized.  Persons with underlying heart conditions have gone into cardiac arrest after just a few drinks. Energy drinks can cause a more forceful heart contraction which can be harmful. It is advised that teens consume no more than 250 ml energy drink per day and not before or during sports or exercise. Other dangers are increased anxiety including full-blown panic attacks, insomnia- some people can’t sleep, diabetes-drinks that are high in sugar can over tax the pancreas, drug interaction with prescription drugs-especially those taken for depression, addiction, risky behavior which may lead to injury or legal problems, jitters and nervousness – causing some people to shake or have anxiety, vomiting, allergic reactions, high blood pressure, niacin overdose – (causing skin flushing, dizziness, rapid heart rate, vomiting, itching, gout, and diarrhea).**

So if one plans to consume an energy drink – do so in moderation (adults-no more than 400 mg caffeine per day). Be aware of the possible dangers.


* Wikipedia – Energy drink

**  Caffeineinformer, Cafeine 101, Top 14 Energy Drink Dangers







For OSTEOPOROSIS – it is Calcium plus –

Calcium, alone, is not enough. It takes more than calcium to build strong bones. It also takes protein and exercise.*

To prevent osteoporosis, we are advised to get three servings a day of dairy products – milk, yogurt, cheese.

Recently we are learning that calcium, alone, is not enough. Protein is also important in the daily diet – especially animal and dairy protein.  Meat, fish, eggs and milk are also necessary to build strong bones and prevent osteoporosis.

Also it is being realized that exercise is important to build strong bones. Exercise with load-bearing exercise such as running or jumping activities helps strengthen bones.

Thus to build and maintain or strengthen bone, it is advised to combine, calcium intake, protein intake and exercise daily.

For calcium – dairy products are excellent plus some leafy vegetables like kale and foods Osteoporosis and low bone mass is a health concern for U.S. women and men aged 50 and older.  It is estimated that almost 44 million women and men aged 50 and older are at risk for osteoporosis.*  We have been told to get enough calcium.

like tofu and fortified cereals are good sources of calcium.

For protein – meat, fish, eggs and milk – hamburgers, chicken, hard-cooked eggs and milk.

For exercise – running, walking, dancing, stair climbing.


As they say – “eat right’ and get moving to build and maintain strong bones.


Also see:  Calcium & Bone Health,, 4/29/2015





* Hernandez, Pamela, CPT, Osteoporosis Prevention – Thinking Beyond Calcium,, July 24, 2017.


















Esiuol5 to Nutrition  

We’ve all heard it a million times – Eat Breakfast,  Breakfast is the most important meal, etc.

But it is worth repeating with school starting and busy morning routines. However it is important for everyone, including children to eat breakfast.

Eating breakfast gives one energy to start the day – I always use the analogy – you can’t run your car without gasoline and you can’t run you without fuel.

Health benefits of breakfast.


  • Energy to start the day
  • Improved concentration in the classroom, the playground and at work
  • More strength and endurance for physical activity
  • Better concentration for problem-solving skills and eye-hand coordination
  • Weight control – control hunger and one eats less the rest of the day.

So eat Breakfast –

  • with protein – like eggs or ham (can be prepared the night before and eaten cold – like a snack).
  • whole grain cereals – bread or cereal
  • fruit or juice – a high vitamin C food, like citrus or citrus juice is good.





Why not Eat Eggs?


When one is hungry and starving, whether in our country (U.S.A.) or in countries where starvation is relevant – why not eat eggs?

Eggs are a nutrient-dense food *– at a low cost.  Eggs are high in protein, vitamins and minerals,  needed for growth and development and to sustain life. Inadequate nutrient intake can result in inadequate height and weight, impaired cognitive development, immune dysfunction, and death in severe cases.

Two new studies from different parts of the world indicated that providing 1 or two eggs per day to malnourished infants and children, significantly improved growth.** Another study showed that adding one egg a day (versus none) to 6-9 month-old infants in undernourished areas of Ecuador decreased stunting (inadequate height for age) by 47% and underweight by 74%.**

In the United States, 15.8 million families are considered low-income or food-insecure.  Nutrient-dense eggs could help their daily nutrient intake. Yet data shows that eggs account for only 1.1 % of household expenditures compared to 9.3 % for soda and 6.9% for prepared desserts and 2.1% for candy. Egg consumption has increased in the general population in recent years, but among food insecure individuals, egg intake has not increased. **

Compared to other foods, eggs are much more nutrient dense and usually much less expensive, than comparable foods such as beef, cheese, vegetables and fruits, etc.  Nothing wrong with beef, cheese, vegetables and fruit, but if one is starving – eggs can be a real “life-saver”.

One doesn’t need fancy cooking equipment for eggs – just some boiling water or a frying pan.

And chickens require only a small space to live and produce eggs and they could be put in many underdeveloped countries to provide nutrition for starving and malnourished persons around the world. Chicken farms could also be placed in inter-city areas in the U.S. to provide a delicious and low cost food for food insecure families.  Again there is nothing wrong with broccoli and blueberries (the 21st century ‘wonder foods’) but dollar-for dollar or (cent-for-cent) eggs are an excellent and delicious choice.




  •   *Egg Trivia,, 10/31/14
  •  **Rains, Yia M. PhD,  July 24, 2017.


Lunchmeat sales have swollen in the past year with sales exceeding $9 billion. The trend credits consumers’ desire for convenient and healthy snacking options.*

However, consumers say, not just any lunch meat, but those that offer quality and healthy options. Popular are freshly sliced meats from the deli department over the prepackaged/processed items. Specialty items such as specialty sausages and pepperoni are popular.

Nielsen says 68% of consumers are willing to pay more for foods and drinks that do not contain undesirable ingredients and lunchmeat processors are trying to fill their wishes.  Consumers are saying they want:

  • “natural products with packaging that says “nothing added” and/or “no antibiotics ever”.
  • Easy to snack, on-the-go items rather than just for sandwiches.
  • Pre-sliced for easy snacking.
  • In addition to lunchmeat, customers want items for meals.
  • Meat/cheese snack sticks are popular with:

Bold, ethnic flavors

Cajun, teriyaki, buffalo, chorizo, peppered, picante are top flavors

Chorizo is the fastest growing specialty meat – up 16% in sales and volume.

  • “Healthy” items are popular especially for kids lunches:

Antibiotic/hormone free

No artificial preservatives

All Natural

  • Items for entertaining, including sausage, peperoni, salami and Italian meats are growing.


So you may want to take another look at the “lunch meat” display next time you visit the super market.



  • Schug, Debra, Editor-in-Chief, Healthy and Bold: Lunchmeat trends from Nielsen Fresh. Food Engineering, June 26, 2017.




You may also like to see:

  • Meat Fillers & Extenders, 10/29/13
  •  Meat Binders, 11/27/13
  • Meat Cuts,, 8/31/15