Energy drinks – which contain high levels of caffeine and other stimulants – may put some children and young adults at risk for serious health problems and should be regulated, researchers said yesterday.
They reviewed scores of scientific studies on the health effects of energy drinks, including brands like Red Bull, and found cases of seizures, delusions, heart problems, and kidney or liver damage.
"There are signs that for some who consume these drinks, there are side-effects," said Dr Steven Lipshultz of the University of Miami, whose study appears in the journal 'Pediatrics'. "The incidence is low, but in certain groups that pediatricians care for, there may be higher risks."
Mr Lipshultz's team is especially concerned about the effects on young adults and children. The report calls for regulatory action and more research.
The report comes just months after a US crackdown on alcoholic caffeinated beverages.
Manufacturers claim their products enhance mental and physical performance.
– John Davies in Chicago
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