What’s Wrong with Energy Drinks?

As a personal trainer in London with clients asking me for advice on their nutrition, one of my first recommendations is “ditch the energy drinks and fizzy sodas.”

What’s so unhealthy about energy drinks and all fizzy sugary drinks? Here’s an outline:

2 methylimidazole

This chemical is found in a lot of energy drinks, and it’s been found to cause cancer in animals. Good enough reason to avoid it?

Artificial sweeteners

You might think that artificial sweeteners are less unhealthy than sugar, but think again. These chemicals break down into methanol, which converts to formaldehyde, a chemical used to preserve dead bodies. Enough said.

Some artificial sweeteners have also been found to have neurotoxic effects, ie – they attack nerve tissue.

Artificial sweeteners also increase sugar-cravings, according to a 2004 study by Sara Bleich PhD (John’s Hopkins School of Public Health).

Phosphoric acid

Phosphoric acid leeches calcium from your bones and teeth. It is also used in household cleaners.

Researcher Vasan Ramachandran MD (a key researcher in the Framington Heart Study) has found links between phosphoric acid and an increase in hip fractures in women.

Sodium benzoate

This chemical has been found to react adversely with vitamin C, causing an increased risk of leukemia.

When I’m on the train or tube early in the morning on the way to my personal training clients, I see energy drinks and fizzy sodas being consumed by so many people. Do they really know what they’re drinking and what it’s doing to their health?

Dominic Londesborough, author of this blog, is a personal trainer in London.