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Are Energy Drinks Bad for Teenagers? (Facts, Alternatives & FAQ)

hands holding up riot energy drink cans

The growing popularity of energy drinks might have you wondering if they are safe to consume. Unfortunately, the short answer is no, as energy drinks contain certain ingredients that can be bad for your health. Keep reading as we look at the pros and cons of energy drinks to help you make an educated decision about consuming them.

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Effects of Energy Drinks on the Teenage Body


Energy drinks contain a considerable amount of caffeine, which can keep teenagers awake and make it difficult to sleep. Many teens might like to use an energy drink to help them stay focused while they’re studying, but it could deprive them of valuable rest.


Many energy drinks have several grams of sugar. Unfortunately, too much sugar can lead to health problems, including diabetes, obesity, tooth decay, and kidney problems. If you are a teen who struggles with weight problems, adding energy drinks can worsen the issue.


Energy drinks can cause sleeplessness due to the high amounts of caffeine that it contains, but this ingredient can also cause several other health problems. Caffeine can cause nausea, headache, abdominal pain, and more if consumed in large doses. It can also cause the teenager to become more irritable and increase their blood pressure. While teenagers are usually good at handling drinks like these, some brands contain more than the recommended limit of 400 mg caffeine per day or make it easy to drink more than that limit, which can be dangerous to long-term health.

gfuel energy drinks
Image Credit by: Jacob Rubich, Unsplash

Energy Drink Substitutions

B Vitamins

If you are looking for a healthy alternative to an energy drink that will still give you plenty of energy, a good place to start is with foods that contain a full spectrum of B vitamins, which include fish, beef liver, chicken, eggs, and beans. While not as fast or exciting as an energy drink, these foods do a surprisingly good job at helping you stay focused to study for the next test while keeping hunger at bay.

Adaptogenic Herbs

One fantastic way to battle tough projects without caffeine or energy drinks is to use adaptogenic herbs. These special herbs help your body fight stress and fatigue while boosting energy. These include licorice root, aloe vera, rosemary, astragalus, ginseng, milk thistle, and holy basil.


Biotin is a natural ingredient found in peppers, mushrooms, bananas, broccoli, avocados, etc. This nutrient helps speed up the absorption of the other nutrients so they can take action quicker and you can get back to work. A combination of these ingredients can be surprisingly effective for delivering energy without caffeine or sugar.

red bull energy drink
Image Credit by: Jan Kopřiva, Unsplash

Are Energy Drinks Bad for Teenagers?

If you or your teenager drinks one or more energy drinks each day, we highly recommend trying out energy drink substitutions. The high amount of caffeine and sugar in those drinks can quickly take its toll on the human body, creating health problems that can last well into the future. However, if you try to eat healthily and rarely push the limits on your caffeine or sugar intake, the occasional can is unlikely to cause any problems and can help you get through a tough day or a hard test.

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You should only consume energy drinks occasionally and as a last resort for a quick energy boost. Many brands contain a high level of caffeine that can cause anxiety and nervousness, making it difficult to sleep. In addition, the high amount of sugar can lead to weight gain and dental problems.

Featured Image Credit: Tyler Nix, Unsplash


Ed Malaker

Ed Malaker, a veteran writer, has contributed to a wide range of blogs that cover tools, pets, guitars, fitness, and computer programming, and of course, coffee. He drinks a lot of it when he writes, making him an expert indeed. When he’s not writing, Ed is usually performing DIY projects around the house or working in the garden. He’s also a musician and spends a lot of time helping people fix their guitars and composing music for independent films.

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