Energy drinks are an excellent pick-me-up when you’re feeling tired, but do they make you poop?
According to Healthline, energy drinks can have a laxative effect for some people due to their high caffeine content. Studies have shown that caffeine can stimulate the muscles in the colon and intestines which causes the urge to poop, and this is particularly true for people who are sensitive to caffeine.
Keep reading to find out more about how energy drinks affect your system and how you can safely enjoy them without harming your body.
Do Energy Drinks Mess Up Your Stomach?
If you’ve been drinking more energy drinks than usual and you’ve noticed your stomach is giving problems, then you may be wondering whether this is more than just a coincidence?
Energy drinks are not only high in caffeine, but they also contain other ingredients that can upset the balance of acid in your stomach which can cause a host of unwanted side effects such as nausea, heartburn, cramps, diarrhea, and vomiting. That said, it’s best to avoid energy drinks if you are especially sensitive to caffeine.
Energy drinks can also cause a condition known as gastritis for certain groups of people. Gastritis happens when the intestines and stomach become inflamed as a result of the ingredients in energy drinks, and this can cause bleeding and pain.
All of this is related to the excess acid in your stomach caused by caffeine, with heartburn being another common symptom.
Which Ingredients Should I Look Out For?
Next time you purchase an energy drink, take the time to check the back of the label for the following ingredients:
While the above ingredients have been FDA approved, they have been known to cause nausea, vomiting, cramps, and diarrhea for some people.
Are Energy Drinks Bad for Constipation?
According to EveryDayHealth, the high caffeine content found in energy drinks can cause dehydration due to its diuretic qualities. Since dehydration is a common cause of constipation, you are better off drinking water to promote a bowel movement rather than energy drinks.
If you’re feeling constipated, here are some tips you can follow to safely and effectively relieve yourself:
- Eat fresh and dried fruits such as figs, prunes, bananas, apples, and pears. These fruits are loaded with fiber and water which will help add bulk to stools and pass more easily through your colon and out.
- Eat plenty of fiber in the form of whole grains such as oatmeal, flaxseed, and barley so that you meet your 35 grams per day goal.
- Eat plenty of vegetables such as salads, legumes, and broccoli.
- Drink at least 6-8 glasses of water per day.
If you’re still hankering after your fix of energy drinks, then you’ll definitely need to know your limits, which brings me to my next point.
How Many Energy Drinks Can I Safely Drink Per Day?
According to ProperWild, adults should consume no more than one to two energy drinks per day (16. oz), and children should not consume them at all. Drinking energy drinks in excess can result in anxiety, teeth rot, insomnia, and heart problems.
That said, this does not mean you should be drinking two energy drinks every day. The two drinks per day is the maximum limit for safe consumption, and you should still do your best to avoid energy drinks unless you absolutely have to.
Why Should You Stop Drinking Energy Drinks?
While there’s nothing wrong with enjoying an energy drink once in a while, regular consumption of them can have some seriously unpleasant side effects in the long term which I will list for you below.
They Make You Gain Weight
The problem with energy drinks is that they are jam-packed with sugar, meaning that you’re certainly not doing your waistline any favors! Essentially, energy drinks are nothing more than empty calories that can lead to weight gain if you drink them on a regular basis.
For example, one can of Redbull contains around 170 calories. If you have more than one per day, you can see how this can quickly add up and result in weight gain. Rather save those calories for something nutrient-rich and good for you, such as lean meat and vegetables.
They’re Overloaded With Vitamins
When it comes to vitamins and minerals, you can have too much of a good thing. Many energy drinks are packed with various vitamins and minerals that your body simply doesn’t need. If you’re overloading on energy drinks, your body is working overtime to expel what it doesn’t need, and you’re likely doing more harm than good.
That said, you’re far better off getting your vitamins and minerals from whole, unprocessed foods.
They’re Packed With Sugar
Energy drinks are full of sugar, with only one can of Redbull containing a whopping 27 grams of sugar! If you’re drinking more than one can per day, this can easily add up to a dangerous intake of sugar, which can negatively impact your health in the long term.
The daily sugar intake for a 2000 calorie diet is no more than 50 grams, so you can only imagine how multiple energy drinks can send you way over this limit (and that’s assuming you don’t eat any other sugars during the day, which most people certainly do).
Sugar-free Is Worse
If you’re wondering whether the sugar-free energy drinks are any better, then you’d better think twice! The sugar substitute aspartame that is commonly used in these drinks can actually make you end up eating more calories in the long term, as it confuses your body’s hunger signals by interfering with blood sugar and insulin.
So, while you may be consuming zero calories in your actual energy drink, you’ll likely make up for this deficit later on due to what aspartame does to your blood sugar and insulin. Be careful!
Several studies have shown that energy drinks destroy the enamel on your teeth and speed up tooth decay significantly. The high levels of acid are partly to blame, as well as the sugar. Sugar and acid are two ingredients you certainly don’t want to combine with dental health, so bear that in mind next time you crack open that Monster or Redbull!
You Could Get Anxious
Have you ever felt incredibly anxious and shaky after consuming an energy drink? That’s likely because the excess caffeine is sending your nervous system into serious overdrive! While energy drinks do make you more focused and energized, this can make other people feel super anxious as well. If you find that you feel anxious and shaky when you drink energy drinks, you may want to give them a break and find alternative ways to feel energized.
What happens to your body when you stop drinking energy drinks?
Similar to quitting caffeine, you may experience some side effects when you stop drinking energy drinks as your body withdraws. While not everyone will have withdrawal symptoms, some may find themselves feeling depressed, irritable, tired, or having difficulty concentrating. Headaches are also not uncommon, but these can easily be treated with water and good sleep.