Taurine, in certain amounts, is a safe drink ingredient in the United States.
Taurine occurs naturally in foods with protein, such as meat or fish. The human body uses taurine for actions in cells. One example is that taurine is used for energy production.
Taurine also helps the body process bile acid and balance fluids, salts and minerals, among other actions.
While taurine in energy drinks may not cause a problem, the other ingredients in these beverages could. Energy drinks may include caffeine, sugar and other ingredients such as herbal extracts.
Because of that, the safety of these drinks is less clear.
Adults with no underlying health conditions often can tolerate energy drinks.
But in some people, these types of drinks cause dehydration and problems falling asleep. They also can cause a person to feel nervous and tense. Most of these issues seem to be from the caffeine in the energy drinks.
Because of the caffeine, children or teens should not drink energy drinks, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics.
Consider tracking the amount of caffeine and sugar from your energy drinks. It can help you avoid calories and the challenges from too much caffeine.
May 10, 2023
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See more Expert Answers
- Taurine (GRAS notice). Generally recognized as safe, No. 586: Taurine. U.S. Food and Drug Administration. https://www.cfsanappsexternal.fda.gov/scripts/fdcc/index.cfm?set=GRASNotices. Accessed April 5, 2023.
- Taurine. Natural Medicines. https://naturalmedicines.therapeuticresearch.com. Accessed April 5, 2023.
- Caffeine in food and dietary supplements: Examining safety. National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK202230/. Accessed April 5, 2023.
- Seifert SM, et al. Health effects of energy drinks on children, adolescents, and young adults. Pediatrics. 2011; doi:10.1542/peds.2009-3592.
- Committee on Nutrition and the Council on Sports Medicine and Fitness. Sports drinks and energy drinks for children and adolescents: Are they appropriate? Pediatrics. 2011; doi:10.1542/peds.2011-0965.
- Vercammen KA, et al. Trends in energy drink consumption among U.S. adolescents and adults, 2003-2016. American Journal of Preventive Medicine. 2019; doi:10.1016/j.amepre.2018.12.007.