I’m a tea drinker. I believe the evidence speaks for itself: I write a Tea Blog; I own and operate a tea leaf company; I drink several cups (if not more!) a day; oh, and I love the wonderful variety of tea that’s found in so many corners of the world. So, I have to admit that I’m somewhat biased to the benefits of tea versus other drinks found in the same category of my favorite energy-boosting beverage. I should add that I’m a regular drinker of coffee (at least one cup a day), I thoroughly enjoy a beautifully crafted beer and a day doesn’t go by without a healthy serving of fresh juice. The one drink that I’ve tried and have never been able to get a handle on is the Boom-Bust-Bang Energy Drink.
Today’s entry will help the consumer of both tea and energy drinks make a more informed decision on the differences between the two. The information provided in this article will also shed light on some very important issues around the over consumption of energy drinks and the possible side effects. Now, don’t get me wrong, with just about any beverage or food of choice, “too much of a good thing” can lead to unintended consequences. Still, when comparing the benefits vs. the possible consequences it’s sometimes worthwhile bypassing the harmful product and instead turn to the healthier choice for the long term. So, without further delay, let’s briefly look at a couple of studies on energy drinks from two very respected Universities.
The University of California Davis, CA, completed a study on the effects of energy drinks. Performing a battery of tests on many university-aged students and adults, the researchers’ collective results reiterated that there is “limited evidence…improves physical and mental performance, driving ability when tired and awareness when faced with decreased mental fatigue."
The examination measured the levels of caffeine found in the typical energy drink versus coffee, tea and cola. Comparing energy drinks and tea, the caffeine content of an 8-12 fl. oz serving was upwards of 294mg (when considering that most energy drinks contain 2-3 servings) while tea contained roughly 48-175mg.
Canada’s McGill University performed a similar study on the possible effects of energy drink consumption on the public in general and also the effects on children and adolescents. While already confirming the high levels of caffeine and sugar found in most energy drinks, the study cited a Canadian Medical Association Journal editorial that said that consumption “can pose serious health risks to children and adolescents.” Numerous symptoms were observed due to the consumption of energy drinks:
· Heart Palpitations
· GI (gastrointestinal) upset
· Feelings of anxiety and nervousness
Continuing with the theme from Friday’s Guest Article, “How Tea Makes You More Productive,” I would toss the fascination with energy drinks to the curb and grab a warm, comforting and well-balanced cup of tea. If you aren't a tea drinker as of this moment, and you think that drinking a cup “isn't macho” or “strong enough”, give tea a second or third chance. The array of flavours and variety of strengths may surprise you. Most importantly, the natural energy-boosters along with the healthy nature of tea is sure to boost your productivity, your stamina, and above all else, your energy levels the whole day through!
“You can never get a cup of tea large enough or a book long enough to suit me.”