Energy Drinks - They are Still Caffeine and Sugar (Despite What They Try to Say)

You have to love slick marketing. With my background in that area (20+ years of marketing and strategic planning) I enjoy reading through various marketing materials and finding the holes. 

At a recent event I was enthusiastically offered a sample of an energy drink.  The person handing them out was a big believer in the health and energy benefits of the drink.  After all, it is in all the marketing materials and everyone who drinks them feels energized.  The truth is - how can you not?  They are loaded with caffeine and sugar.  But to read the accompanying booklet you'd think this was the healthiest drink on the planet. 

Let's explore some of the "marketing".

The first claim - "free of synthetic stimulants, these advanced formulas provide a healthy alternative to traditional energy drinks."  Not sure exactly what that means and perhaps other energy drinks have synthetic stimulants, but the point is that MonaVie is loaded with stimulants, or as they say "all natural sources of caffeine."  This would be the guarana, green tea, cha de burge, maca, yerba mate, and panax ginseng.  Let's face it - stimulants are stimulants.

A second claim is "this advanced formula features Palatinose (Trademarked), a carbohydrate energy source found naturally in honey, sugar cane, and sugar beets."  Kind of sounds like sugars to me.  But, "Palatinose metabolizes more slowly than sucrose and maltose - typical ingredients in other energy drinks - promoting a steady stream of energy over a longer period of time." So, again, probably true, but I'll bet not all that much longer, and at the end of the day - to your body - sugar is sugar!


Bernard Rosen, PhD is a Nutrition Consultant and Educator. He works with individuals, groups, and at corporations to create individualized nutrition and wellness programs. His office is in Thiensville. To learn more or to schedule an appointment, e-mail at bernie@brwellness.com, call (262) 389-9907 or go to www.brwellness.com.