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Published on December 17th, 2007 | by Stephanie Evans

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Boost Your Health with Organic Energy Drinks

When choosing your next energy drink, take note of the energy that was put into it to make it good for you and the planet.  Yes, the world is your oyster.  Modern life is full and exciting and endlessly eventful.  But at times it can be too much so—your desire to accomplish and achieve the most in life can leave you feeling less than energetic, even downright drained and mentally scattered.

The promise of a little canned energy to help you through your hectic day is naturally appealing, and this very enticing appeal that the energy drink provides to millions of people causes its sales to skyrocket,surpassing even those of bottled water!

What these advertisements don’t remind young people is that, at best, energy drinks can only offer a short-term fix. The advertising community conveniently fails to underscore the fact that diet and exercise, adequate sleep, and minimizing life stress are the optimal ways to boost low energy reserves.

Energy Drink Profile

Canned EnergyUntil recently, the energy drink market didn’t have much to offer in the way of natural, let alone organic or sustainably-sourced choices.  In fact, the majority of mass-marketed energy drinks are still chocked-full of artificial sweeteners, flavors, and preservatives–and most of their energy-giving properties are based in high levels of added caffeine.  The advertising promise of each follows the same tune: By imbibing its contents, a consumer will feel instantly energized, experiencing improved physical endurance and increased mental alertness, often getting a boost in immune support as well.  These claims often rest less on the sugar and caffeine content of energy drinks than on a combination of other stamina-enhancing, natural ingredients such as taurine, B-vitamins, ginseng, and glucuronolactone.

 Studies have shown that these natural substances have beneficial qualities:

  • Glucuronolactone, a chemical compound produced by the metabolism of glucose in the liver, is purported to fight fatigue and stimulate memory retention.
  • Taurine, a non-essential amino acid naturally produced by the liver and brain, reportedly strengthens the heart, improves vision, and aids in the digestion of fats.
  • B-vitamins have been shown to increase metabolic rates and combat stress.
  • Ginseng has been used as a powerful, stimulating tonic for centuries.

Indeed, the energizing and metabolism-boosting properties of these ingredients have been shown to be effective at enhancing health.  While their healing benefits are by no means imaginary, the percentage amount of the energy drink that they comprise is minimal at most.  This fact does not deter the marketing strategies employed to advertise these drinks as essentially healthy and mood-amplifying for the main target demographic, which is primarily teens and young adults.

Energy drinks are everywhere that young people are: in gyms, schools, and nightclubs.  These drinks are convenient and appealingly packaged, an ever-ready quick fix for a lull in energy owing to a shortage of sleep or lack of proper diet.  What these advertisements don’t remind young people is that, at best, energy drinks can only offer a short-term fix.  The advertising community conveniently fails to underscore the fact that diet and exercise, adequate sleep, and minimizing life stress are the optimal ways to boost low energy reserves.

Green Energy Drinks 

These wrinkles in the energy drink trend can only benefit the industry and its consumers by the new direction that the market is taking, influenced by a growing awareness of the health perils of conventional and artificially produced food products.

Within the last year, green energy drinks have emerged onto the scene.  Juice or tea-based and naturally sweetened, these healthful beverages offer an alternative to the bulk of energy drinks that are high in sugar and artificial flavors with scads of added caffeine.

These drinks provide a gentle energy boost that comes from more natural stimulants like green tea, yerba mate, and guarana (a berry grown in Venezuela and Brazil with three times the natural caffeine of a coffee bean).  Thus, you can now enjoy a little extra kick without overloading your system with unnatural ingredients.

Yerba Mate DrinkYerba Mate, a South American drink that has been enjoyed for centuries as a healthy and stimulating beverage, has found its way into the green energy drink genus.  As a 100% organic, rainforest-grown, fair-trade product, new energy drinks that are incorporating mate are also encouraging higher standards of nutrition and environmental sustainability into a market that for ten years has been dominated by non-organic products.  The organic energy drink has arrived!  And the introduction of this fair-trade product has the potential to shift our focus from thinking beyond our own energy needs to being aware of the energy and human effort that went into producing that little canned pick-me-up.

Article Contributors: Julie Reid





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