Do Energy Drugs and Drinks Work?

Each year millions of people consume energy drinks and take energy drugs to stay attentive.  But have you ever thought if they trully work.  Is it your mind that wakes you up when you see the energy sign on the bottle?  Do energy drinks trully give you energy?


Energy drinks are canned or bottled beverages sold in convenience stores, grocery stores, and bars and nightclubs (in mixed drinks). Most energy drinks are carbonated drinks that contain large amounts of caffeine and sugar with additional ingredients, such as B vitamins, amino acids (e.g. taurine), and herbal stimulants such as guarana.

Drugs that give you energy are normally found as stimulant drugs.  Stimulants are a class of drugs that enhance brain activity.


The most popular energy drinks are:

Red Bull Energy Drink

Monster Energy Drink

Full Throttle Energy Drink

Amp Energy Drink

XS Energy Drink

Redline Energy Drink

Rock Star Energy Drink

Sparkz Energy Drink

Some popular stimulants are:










Most energy drinks contain caffeine, vitamins, and herbal supplements the manufacturer has combined.  The most popular vitamin are B vitamins.  Other common ingredients are guana , acai, and taurine, plus various forms of ginseng, maltodextrin, carbonated water, inositol, carnitine, creatine, glucuronolactone and ginkgo biloba. Some contain high levels of sugar, and many brands also offer artificially-sweetened ‘diet’ versions.  THE MAJOR INGREDIENT IS CAFFEINE! Energy drugs are just the stimulant drugs that amplify your brain activity.


Energy drinks do have the power to keep you awake and have you bounce off the walls.  The ingredients in the energy drinks stimulate your mind.  Here is what some of the ingredients do:

  • Ephedrine – A stimulant that works on the central nervous system. It is a common ingredient in weight-loss products and decongestants, but there have been concerns about its effects on the heart.
  • Taurine – A natural amino acid produced by the body that helps regulate heart beat and muscle contractions. Many health experts aren’t sure what effect it has as a drink additive (and the rumor that taurine comes from bull testicles is false).
  • Ginseng – A root believed by some to have several medicinal properties, including reducing stress and boosting energy levels.
  • B-vitamins – A group of vitamins that can convert sugar to energy and improve muscle tone.
    • Caffeine works by blocking the effects of adenosine, a brain chemical involved in sleep. When caffeine blocks adenosine, it causes neurons in the brain to fire. Thinking the body is in an emergency, the pituitary gland initiates the body’s “fight or flight” response by releasing adrenaline. This hormone makes the heart beat faster and the eyes dilate. It also causes the liver to release extra sugar into the bloodstream for energy. Caffeine affects the levels of dopamine, a chemical in the brain’s pleasure center. All of these physical responses make you feel as though you have more energy.  WHAT THIS MEANS IS…. caffeine tricks your brain and hormones are released.  When hormones are released, the liver releases extra sugar into the bloodstream which gives you your energy.  Nice and simple!  Caffeine tricks the brain!

    As you can see, all of these give you energy in the body.  Additionally sugar is quick substance to use to get a energy fast.  The body takes each one of these ingredients and converts it into energy!

    Stimulants also create energy in your body.  Stimulants increase the amount of norepinephrine and dopamine in the brain, which increases blood pressure and heart rate, constricts blood vessels, increases blood glucose, and increases breathing. Effects can feel like an increase alertness, attention, and energy along with a sense of euphoria.  Since glucose is a sugar, by increasing it in your blood you will have an energy boost.


    I am a college student and yes I realize most of us drink coffee, take drugs, and have a lot of energy drinks.  I have been there and taken some because I had to pull all nighters.  However, they are NOT GOOD FOR YOU.  They can cause you to lose sleep, nausea, irritability, and if you drink enough you can be sent to the hospital.  I know this all sounds crazy but it is true.  With the drugs, wow… you can become addicted to them and those drugs can send you immediately to the hospital.  What I am saying is if you do not have to take it, do not take it.  Try candy to get a sugar boost; go to the gym and get your energy going.  Try to avoid these because they can hurt you.

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    About Cliff Englewood Cliff goes to MSU and is TSB Magazine resident "College Life" contributor with tips and advice to get the most out of your time in college.