Allen was a restaurant manager that I worked with a few years ago. He was a young guy, about 23-years-old. He had short red hair and freckles. He went to church regularly and didn’t drink or smoke. About the only vice that he had was caffeine. He drank a lot of Red Bull to keep him awake during his long hours of working at the restaurant. I saw him one day and noticed that his hands were shaking really bad from all that caffeine.
Back when I started working in restaurants, there were no energy drinks. All we had were No-Doz and coffee. We actually got to the point where we snorted the No-Doz to get that extra kick. The caffeine actually ran into your bloodstream that way and gave you a huge head rush. But then one day I blew my nose and the handkerchief was filled with blood. I stopped doing the No-Doz immediately and switched to coffee.
Now the latest craze among the younger set is mixing Red Bull energy drinks with alcohol. Not really a good idea. But the energy drink companies (there are over 50 of them), got wind of this fad and started putting alcohol right in the drinks. Now the FDA is trying to ban the energy drinks that have alcohol.
According to Medical News Today: “Alcoholic energy drinks have been making national headlines, as we reported earlier this month in our article ‘Energy Drinks: Is It Time To Tighten Regulation. To-date, four states have banned their sale following reports of blackouts and unsafe behaviors, especially among college students.”
The addition of alcohol to a caffeinated beverage has never been approved by the FDA. They recently told the energy drink companies that they must produce safety data for the energy drinks that also contain alcohol.
“Manufactured alcoholic energy drinks are dangerous, and because they are cheap, they attract young drinkers,” said Mary O’Brien, a researcher and M.D. who is also the associate professor of emergency medicine and public health sciences at Wake Forest Baptist.
They also have names like Bawls, Cocaine, Mad Dog, and Pimp that appeal to the younger crowd. College students who use these alcohol and caffeine energy drinks have more alcohol-associated problems than those who don’t use them. In other words, more social problems, car accidents, and violence. Maybe it was better in the old days. Have a cup of coffee with a No-Doz and then drink a couple of beers after you pass your final.