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Energy drinks may pose risks for people with high blood pressure, heart disease
Date:11/6/2007

ORLANDO, Nov. 6 Downing an energy drink may boost blood pressure as well as energy, researchers said in a small study presented at the American Heart Associations Scientific Sessions 2007.

In the study, conducted by Wayne State University researchers, blood pressure and heart rate levels increased in healthy adults who drank two cans a day of a popular energy drink.

While the increases didnt reach dangerous levels in the healthy volunteers, the increases in blood pressure and heart rate could prove to be clinically significant in patients with heart disease or in those who consume energy drinks often, said James Kalus, Pharm.D., senior manager of Patient Care Services at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit, Mich., and a former Wayne State researcher who led the study. Individuals with high blood pressure and heart disease should be advised to avoid these drinks.

Most energy drinks contain high levels of caffeine and taurine, an amino acid also found in protein-containing foods such as meats and fish. Both have had effects on heart function and blood pressure in some studies. In contrast, sports drinks in general contain various mixtures of water, sugars and salts alone, without chemicals aimed at increasing energy or alertness.

The 15 healthy young adult participants (53 percent female, average age 26) were asked to abstain from other forms of caffeine for two days prior to and throughout the study. On the first day baseline measurements of blood pressure, heart rate and electrocardiogram (ECG) were taken. Then the participants drank two cans of an energy drink that contained 80 milligrams of caffeine and 1,000 milligrams of taurine. Researchers then measured blood pressure, heart rate and ECG again at 30 minutes, one, two, three and four hours after consumption. This continued for the next five days, and then, on the seventh day, the researchers followed the same procedures used on the first day.

The researchers compared average baselin
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Contact: Karen Astle
Karen.Astle@heart.org
214-706-1392
American Heart Association
Source:Eurekalert

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