Food and Behaviour Research

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A Randomized Trial of Cardiovascular Responses to Energy Drink Consumption in Healthy Adults

Svatikova A, Covassin N, Somers KR, Somers KV, Soucek F, Kara T, Bukartyk J. (2015) JAMA 314(19) 2079-82. doi: 10.1001/jama.2015.13744. 

Web URL: View this and related research articles via PubMed here


No abstract for this article is available, but the following extracts summarise the rationale, and the key results.

Energy drink consumption has been associated with serious cardiovascular events,
 possibly related to caffeine and other stimulants.

We hypothesized that drinking a commercially available energy drink compared with a placebo drink increases blood pressure and heart rate in healthy adults at rest and in response to mental and physical stress (primary outcomes). Furthermore, we hypothesized that these hemodynamic changes are associated with sympathetic activation, which could predispose to increased cardiovascular risk (secondary outcomes).

We conducted a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover pilot study involving 25 healthy young adults. 

A commercially available energy drink significantly increased levels of blood pressure and catecholamines in young healthy adults. Physical, mental, or cold stress did not further accentuate the blood pressure increase. These acute hemodynamic and adrenergic changes may predispose to increased cardiovascular risk.

Limitations of our study are the small sample size and only 1 energy drink being studied. Further research in larger studies is needed to assess whether the observed acute changes are likely to increase cardiovascular risk.



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