Energy Drinks

Energy drinks are a popular non-alcoholic caffeinated beverage that are consumed globally. Learn the facts, get the latest, and what’s in them.

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With the recent growth of the energy drink category, some Americans are getting even greater amounts of caffeine in their diet.

The FDA commissioned an in-depth analysis of caffeine consumption among the U.S. population in 2009, which was then updated in 2010. This report concludes that, despite the growth of energy drinks in the marketplace, the average amount of caffeine consumed by the adult U.S. population remains consistent with past FDA estimates – at approximately 300 milligrams of caffeine daily. The report also found that coffee and tea remain the primary source of caffeine in the American diet. Furthermore, that same report indicated that teens and young adults ages 14 to 21 years consume, on average, approximately one-third the amount of caffeine as people over 21 – about 100 milligrams per day – and that most of their caffeine consumption is from beverages other than energy drinks.

Guarana, an ingredient found in some energy drinks, is raising concerns because not much is known about it.

Guarana, another ingredient found in some energy drinks, is a nut-like seed from plants native to South America and is a natural source of caffeine. Guarana contributes caffeine to beverages - just as coffee, tea, cocoa, yerba mate or other natural sources of caffeine do.

Energy drinks have “high” amounts of caffeine.

The vast majority of energy drinks consumed in the United States – including Monster, Red Bull, Rockstar, AMP and Full Throttle – have similar or lower levels of caffeine than home-brewed coffee which many Americans enjoy on a daily basis. And many contain about half the caffeine of a similarly-sized coffeehouse coffee. A 16 fluid ounce energy drink typically contains between 160 and 240 milligrams of caffeine, while the same size coffeehouse coffee contains around 300 to 330 milligrams. Moreover, caffeine has been safely consumed around the world for hundreds of years.

Energy drinks are regulated.

Like other foods and beverages sold in the United States, energy drinks and their ingredients are regulated by regulatory authorities. Energy drinks manufactured or distributed by American Beverage Association (ABA) member companies are conventional foods and beverages subject to FDA’s Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act (FD&C Act).

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Fact # 02

Most energy drinks contain significantly less caffeine than a similarly-sized coffeehouse coffee. In fact, many contain about half. A 16 fluid ounce energy drink typically contains between 160 and 240 milligrams of caffeine, while the same size coffeehouse coffee contains around 300 to 330 milligrams.