If you have recently been to any gaming events, there is no doubt that you will have seen event sponsorship from huge brands like Tornado Energy or Emerge.
This is an effort to enter the gamer market with slogans such as: “FUELLING GAMING” and “Drink, Play, Do Damage!” However is it something gamers should be investing their money in?
Now, before anyone says that I am “biased” or anything else, I must admit that for many years I have had these drinks very regularly, maybe too regularly.
I would probably have 1 a day, which is the highest recommended amount for adults. However, last year I stopped drinking them all together for about 6 months. This is because a man who lives on the same road as myself, who I knew, had major kidney failures.
If you didn’t know the kidney filters the blood and removes impurities that could be harmful to the body. The doctors say that the issues in his kidneys have been caused because of his excessive drinking of Red Bull and other energy drinks, as he would have 2-3 each day due to his job as a builder. This created large threats to his health and his family genuinely feared the worst as the doctors couldn’t guarantee anything.
Luckily all went well, however he currently only has about 5% functionality in his kidneys and he isn’t clear of danger just yet.
I think that this just goes to show that anyone can be affected by it as he was a really healthy man who had a very physically active job.
Energy drinks have extremely high amounts of sugar, obviously, as the idea is that they provide the drinker with a lot of glucose to provide them with energy. Hence “Energy” drink. Now this is fine and is really useful for people who use all of this glucose, such as people who are working out at the gym or people who are playing sports for an extended period of time.
This is where the issue for gamers drinking these drinks lies, as gamers will be stationary for the time that these drinks are in their blood streams. As a result none of the energy that the drink contains is used up (in simple terms). This means that the sugar and other contents of the drink are simply turned into fats and stored to be used at a later date by the body. If you have ever had these drinks you may have noticed that it causes your leg to start shaking. This is the body trying to use up some of the energy that has been taken in and this is the easiest way to do this. So all of this means that these drinks will cause obesity, the largest issue with places like the UK and America at the moment. Lots of health experts and celebrity chefs, such as Jamie Oliver, have said that sugar is the biggest issue in our diets today, and more specifically sugary soft drinks and energy drinks as they lead to countless amounts of issues regarding our wellbeing.
Also Energy drinks contain excessive amounts of caffeine, a substance that can cause tons of issues if too much is consumed, for example drink 1 energy drink and 2 cups of coffee a day could result in issues such as:
- Stomach upset
- Fast heartbeat
- Muscle tremors
Okay, now I’ve said a lot of the negatives, but there is an argument that these drinks do give eSports competitors and regular gamers a genuine edge, for example in G Fuel, a drink popular with Faze clan and Optic.
This is because caffeine and other minerals found in energy drinks are genuinely proven to increase reflexes and lower reaction times. This will obviously help in fast paced FPS games such as Call of Duty.
Now that is the only advantage I can see for gamers.
Although it probably isn’t advised, as long as they are consumed within moderation, so maybe once a week and you carry out a healthy lifestyle, then I think that it is ok to drink these energy drinks. However they haven’t really been around long enough for us to see the long term health effects of them, in 30 years there could be increased cases in blood pressure and heart issues due to these drinks becoming more main stream, but then at the same time there is a good chance that they won’t have any major effects on our health. So ultimately it is down to you and your opinion of them, whether or not they are worth the risk. Personally I won’t continue drinking them regularly, maybe once a month or so, but for me, the reward from drinking them doesn’t come close to the risk from them.
Overall I think that it does depend on what one’s lifestyle is like outside of gaming. If they go to the gym or play sports regularly which will ensure that the glucose will be used up then there may not be an issue for the gamer. After all that is what these drinks were designed for, working out and exercise. However if they don’t do much then it could be health threatening. So as good as it may taste, it is the same as every other type of food and drink, to be eaten as part of healthy and balanced diet.