A new study suggests that energy drinks raise the resting blood pressure dramatically in healthy young adults who do not regularly consume caffeinated drinks. This may increase the risk of cardiac events. Energy drinks are very popular among young people. Lead study author Anna Svatikova from the Mayo Clinic stated “We and others have previously shown that energy drinks increase blood pressure. Now we are seeing that for those not used to caffeine, the concern may be even greater.”
For the study, 25 healthy young adults between the ages 19 to 40 were considered. All of them were given either a commercially available energy drink or a placebo drink and the changes in heart rate and blood pressure were assessed. The researchers recorded the blood pressure and heart rate before and 30 minutes after the consumption of the energy drink/placebo. Comparison was also made between caffeine-naive participants, including those who consume less than 160 mg of caffeine per day, and regular caffeine users.
It was observed that the participants who consumed energy drink experienced a prominent rise in blood pressure as compared to those who received the placebo. However, for caffeine naïve individuals the effect was most dramatic as their blood pressure increase was more than double after consuming the energy drink as compared to placebo. Svatikova commented “Consumers should use caution when using energy drinks because they may increase the risk of cardiovascular problems, even among young people.”