Energy drinks may harm kids’ health’

Seoul (The Korea Herald/ANN) – Having more than two energy drinks a day could cause health problems in children due to the high levels of caffeine, a report said yesterday.
In a study of 11 energy drinks currently on sale, the Korea Consumer Agency (KCA) found that most of them carry high doses of caffeine but the beverage makers didn’t provide information about the amount of caffeine contained and their health risks.
Only two of the 11 energy drinks-Bacchus F and Glonsan D-stated that they contain 30 milligrams of caffeine per bottle. Others, including Red Bull, Hot Six and Confidence, didn’t let consumers know how much caffeine they contain, the agency said.
The consumer agency warned that children or teenagers drinking more than two cans or bottles of energy drink could damage their health as the amount of caffeine exceeds daily recommendations.
In Korea, children weighing 30 kilograms are recommended not to consume more than 75 milligrams of caffeine per day, and adults 400 milligrams.
The highly caffeinated beverages can also cause side effects.
“Those who are addicted to so-called energy drinks could suffer from various withdrawal symptoms such as headaches, depression, muscle cramps, and gastric and sleep disorders,” an official at the agency said.
In the report, the KCA did not reveal the level of caffeine that each energy drink contained. But Choi Dong-ic of the main opposition Democratic United Party said in a parliamentary health committee meeting two months ago that Red Bull, Hot Six and Hot Six Limited Edition contain 62.5, 60 and 86.4 milligrams of caffeine, respectively.
The government plans to ban the sale of high caffeine energy drinks from school stores and areas around schools. According to the plan, schools stores will be banned from selling beverages containing more than 0.15 milligrams of caffeine per 1 millilitre.
Some beverage makers were angered by the report.
Kwangdong Pharmaceutical Ltd., claimed that its product Vita500 is not an energy drink but a vitamin drink.

By Cho Chung-un in Seoul/The Korea Herald | Asia News Network – Sat, Oct 6, 2012

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