The Instigator
Black.Nite17
Pro (for)
Winning
21 Points
The Contender
AntiPatriot
Con (against)
Losing
19 Points

Energy Drinks are BAD for you.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/27/2008 Category: Health
Updated: 9 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 12,724 times Debate No: 2022
Debate Rounds (2)
Comments (1)
Votes (11)

 

Black.Nite17

Pro

Im simpily saying that energy drinks are unhealthy.

Energy drinks today are very popular but can do horrible things to your body.
The caffeine-containing energy drinks usually contain a wide range of ingredients, with different brands having similar, but not identical
formulations. One ingredient they all have in common is a form of sugar such as sucrose (table sugar) or glucose. Some have amino acids (e.g. 'taurine') while herbal supplements such as Gingko biloba, Echinacea, Ginseng and St John's Wort are present in many. They also usually include guarana (a caffeine-containing extract from a South American plant).

Now ill let whoever accepts this know, i enjoy energy drinks but i have stopped drinking them as of about a year ago, after finding out about the serious health risk.
AntiPatriot

Con

The title of this topic is very vague and makes this debate ambiguously defined. Are we talking about one energy drink? Or are we talking about daily use of energy drinks? Someone who drinks them more than water? I think we would be best served to clarify this by saying that your side of the debate is: "Energy drinks have more negative effects than positive"
While my side postulates: "Energy drinks do not have enough negative effects to be considered completely unhealthy."

Yes, energy drinks do have some "bad" effects, but almost every consumable product has at least one "bad" effect. Here I will present a case while energy drinks, in moderation, can be beneficial to its users, despite the health risks.

You list several ingredients with no explanations for any of them. I am assuming that you believe all of those things are bad for you, or else you wouldn't have listed them to prove your point. Let me go through this list and explain the effects of each of these ingredients.

Glucose/Sucrose/Sugar - Glucose and sucrose are complex carbohydrates that the body consumes during organic reactions for energy. The chemical reactions of these two sugars with oxygen gas have very high, negative enthalpy values. This means that during this process a lot of energy is released--this is energy that our body uses for fuel. When your body breaks down carbohydrates for consumption, glucose is the most abundant saccharide. So glucose is the main sugar that our body consumes for energy. When sucrose is broken down, its main products are glucose and fructose. As I've mentioned earlier, glucose is the good sugar that our body can efficiently use. Fructose, while still among the three most important blood sugars (along with glucose and galactose) and readily consumed by the body, is the main culprit in energy drinks. The problem with fructose is that, in excess, it can lead to many health risks. In moderation however, fructose is very beneficial to the body. The fact that energy drinks have a relatively high concentration of sugar is what leads some people to consider them unhealthy. But if you are going to stop drinking energy drinks on the basis that they have sugar, you would also need to stop drinking soda and most juices, as well as abandon the indulgence of any candy.

Amino Acids/Taurine - Amino acids are the component structural units of proteins in your body. You will often see weight lifters consuming products with "key amino acids" to help the muscles use and build protein. Protein is NECESSARY for the muscle development and growth in almost all living organisms. Saying that energy drinks are unhealthy on the basis that they have amino-acids in them is not a strong argument.

Herbal supplements - Most of those things you listed aren't necessarily unhealthy. Gingko Biloba is a supplement that you can buy at the grocery store. Many people take it regularly to supposedly enhance brain-functioning. Those other supplements can be (and are) consumed in moderate quantities by health-conscious individuals. The effects (positive or negative) of all those substances mentioned are in question however. Some nutritionists will say that those supplements will help you in various ways, while others say that they won't do anything. However, I would ask of you to find anyone that says that those supplements are unhealthy (in moderation). The truth is that those substances are present in energy drinks are only there in very low quantities--therefore ANY effects that they might have (positive or negative) are not significant enough to discontinue your use of energy drinks on the basis that they are some of the ingredients.

Guarana - Guarana is classified by the United States as GRAS--Generally Recognized As Safe. Yes, it does contain caffeine, but that is the main psychoactive ingredient in energy drinks. You shouldn't be having an energy drink if you don't wish to be stimulated.

The main ingredient in energy drinks, caffeine, is the substance that you should have listed first and foremost as negative. Many cases can be made against the use of caffeine, but it is a very practical, and relatively mild drug. It stimulates the central nervous system and should be used by those needing a boost. Oftentimes there is a "coming down" period with energy drinks--the time after your body has consumed and used the psychoactive ingredients where you might feel a little be tired and down. Any intelligent drinker of energy drinks would know this and plan accordingly.

My argument is that for someone who needs/wants energy and a stimulant (someone like a truck driver), energy drinks are a perfectly acceptable way to get those desired effects. Energy drinks CAN be unhealthy when they are consumed in copious amounts. I'm not saying that it's okay for kids to have an energy drink twice a day. I'm simply saying that, in moderation, energy drinks can be positively used and are not permanently damaging to the body.
Debate Round No. 1
Black.Nite17

Pro

I would like to say thank you for accepting my debate(thought it would be fun) and i hope it is a good one.To begin I would like to clarify that the debate is simpily whether energy drinks are healthy for you or not. Im not asking for a more positive than negative but simpliy whether or not they are good for you(health-wise).

"You list several ingredients with no explanations for any of them. I am assuming that you believe all of those things are bad for you, or else you wouldn't have listed them to prove your point. Let me go through this list and explain the effects of each of these ingredients."-Antipatriot

I'm sorry i didnt offer an explanation why these ingrediants were harmful and why they helped my arguement.

"Glucose/Sucrose/Sugar - Glucose and sucrose are complex carbohydrates that the body consumes during organic reactions for energy. The chemical reactions of these two sugars with oxygen gas have very high, negative enthalpy values. This means that during this process a lot of energy is released--this is energy that our body uses for fuel. When your body breaks down carbohydrates for consumption, glucose is the most abundant saccharide. So glucose is the main sugar that our body consumes for energy. When sucrose is broken down, its main products are glucose and fructose. As I've mentioned earlier, glucose is the good sugar that our body can efficiently use. Fructose, while still among the three most important blood sugars (along with glucose and galactose) and readily consumed by the body, is the main culprit in energy drinks. The problem with fructose is that, in excess, it can lead to many health risks. In moderation however, fructose is very beneficial to the body. The fact that energy drinks have a relatively high concentration of sugar is what leads some people to consider them unhealthy. But if you are going to stop drinking energy drinks on the basis that they have sugar, you would also need to stop drinking soda and most juices, as well as abandon the indulgence of any candy."- Antipatriot

So yes it is agreed that glucose is a simple sugar that your body breaks down for energy and is good for your body when used. But this is really only in small doses compared to avg. energy drink having about 21.5 g sucrose, 5.25 g of glucose, which if not used can quickly add unwanted pounds to the body.

"Herbal supplements - Most of those things you listed aren't necessarily unhealthy. Gingko Biloba is a supplement that you can buy at the grocery store. Many people take it regularly to supposedly enhance brain-functioning. Those other supplements can be (and are) consumed in moderate quantities by health-conscious individuals. The effects (positive or negative) of all those substances mentioned are in question however. Some nutritionists will say that those supplements will help you in various ways, while others say that they won't do anything. However, I would ask of you to find anyone that says that those supplements are unhealthy (in moderation). The truth is that those substances are present in energy drinks are only there in very low quantities--therefore ANY effects that they might have (positive or negative) are not significant enough to discontinue your use of energy drinks on the basis that they are some of the ingredients."- Antipatriot

http://www.drugs.com...
Here is a site with info on gingko biloba and as far as i can tell..its not saying its the best thing for you either. With Severe side effects ; possible effects include headache, dizziness, heart palpitations and GI and dermatologic reactions. Ginkgo pollen can be strongly allergenic. Contact with the fleshy fruit pulp causes allergic dermatitis, similar to poison ivy. So im not saying all herbal supplements are bad for you that are included in a energy drink, but they are all not definetly good.

"Guarana - Guarana is classified by the United States as GRAS--Generally Recognized As Safe. Yes, it does contain caffeine, but that is the main psychoactive ingredient in energy drinks. You shouldn't be having an energy drink if you don't wish to be stimulated."- Antipatriot

Yes guarana is "generally considered safe" but its basically a twin to caffiene. So when you have 25 mg of guarana and 280 mg per serving size of 240 ml (8.2 US fl oz)(Rockstar-common energy drink sold in stores)It all adds up to a very unhealthy amount of caffiene. Also the crashes that "tend" to happen after a couple hours prior to drinking an energy drink are linked to that of the high doeses of caffiene. Its also been included that the heart rate increase made from energy drinks is unhealthy due to it all being caffiene.

"Any intelligent drinker of energy drinks would know this and plan accordingly."- Antipatriot

Sorry but this has nothing to do with anything. Still unhealthy. Sorry alex.

"My argument is that for someone who needs/wants energy and a stimulant (someone like a truck driver), energy drinks are a perfectly acceptable way to get those desired effects. Energy drinks CAN be unhealthy when they are consumed in copious amounts. I'm not saying that it's okay for kids to have an energy drink twice a day. I'm simply saying that, in moderation, energy drinks can be positively used and are not permanently damaging to the body."-Antipatriot

Well this is your agreement with me that energy drinks are unhealthy when you first say:

"Energy drinks CAN be unhealthy when they are consumed in copious amounts."

And

"are not permanently damaging to the body"

By saying the second line your saying that they are unhealthy if not permanently but in short term. I would like to conclude that even though they may be convienent for the working trucker for needs a "pick me up", that does not help the case that over all the avg. energy drink is more unhealthy than healthy.

Also here is a website to refer to for futher explanations.

http://www.drugs.com...
AntiPatriot

Con

Please read the ENTIRE debate before voting. Thank you!

>> Im not asking for a more positive than negative but simpliy whether or not they are good for you(health-wise).<<

If we're going to get technical, then you have made a false statement. You say that your argument is that energy drinks are "not good for you". This is different than saying that they are bad for you. Just because something isn't good doesn't necessarily mean that it is bad. The topic of the debate is "Energy Drinks are BAD for you" --with capital B, A, and D. Therefore YOU must prove that energy drinks are unhealthy for you (which you haven't done), not simply take the position that they are not good for you (which is closer to what you have done).

>>So yes it is agreed that glucose is a simple sugar that your body breaks down for energy and is good for your body when used. But this is really only in small doses compared to avg. energy drink having about 21.5 g sucrose, 5.25 g of glucose, which if not used can quickly add unwanted pounds to the body.<<

I ask that you look at this site. Take notice of the fourth clause about sugar.
http://www.teennutrition.net...
As a teen (which apparently you are one), this guide says that you shouldn't have more than 55g of sugar in one day. Consuming an energy drink does not even come close to exceeding this amount. This site does talk about how sugar CAN be unhealthy, but that is obviously if it consumed in quantities that are excessive. If you can control your sugar-intake the rest of the day, the sugar you would consume in one energy drink is not an unhealthy amount. The problem with kids today, is that they DON'T control their diet, so they end up having too much sugar. However, the sugar in an energy drink, in and of itself is not necessarily "BAD" for you.

>>Here is a site with info on gingko biloba and as far as i can tell..its not saying its the best thing for you either.<<

Again, just because it doesn't say that gingko "is the best thing for you" does not prove your point that it is bad for you.

>>With Severe side effects ; possible effects include headache, dizziness, heart palpitations and GI and dermatologic reactions.<<

Every drug has the "possibility" of side effects. But I hope you are not implying that all or even a majority of people who consume gingko experience these effects. I'm sure you wouldn't consider ginger extracts to be unhealthy would you? Here is some information (from the same source you used for gingko no less) about ginger.
http://www.drugs.com...
Notice some of the "possible" side effects:

"rash, hives, itching, difficulty breathing, tightness in the chest, swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue, change in the amount of urine, drowsiness, irregular heartbeat"

Surely these reactions are "bad", but you can't hope to claim that something is unhealthy based solely on its "possible side effects".

>>Ginkgo pollen can be strongly allergenic. Contact with the fleshy fruit pulp causes allergic dermatitis, similar to poison ivy.<<

Yes gingko "CAN" be strongly allergenic, but so "CAN" peanuts. Some people will asphyxiate and die if they consume too many peanuts. So just because some people are allergic to something, we should call it unhealthy? I hope not.
And notice how it says "contact with the fleshy fruit pulp causes..."--when you consume energy drinks, you are not coming in contact with the "fleshy fruit pulp" of the gingko plant. You are consuming a trace amount of its extract.

>>So im not saying all herbal supplements are bad for you that are included in a energy drink, but they are all not definetly good.<<

No you aren't saying that all herbal supplements are bad for you. But if you want to effectively defend your topic, then you ought to at least be able to say more than "they are all not definetly good" about the ones you brought up. (And hopefully do it with better spelling.)

>>Yes guarana is "generally considered safe"<<

Here you explicitly concede that guarana is not BAD for you.

>>but its basically a twin to caffiene. So when you have 25 mg of guarana and 280 mg per serving size of 240 ml (8.2 US fl oz)(Rockstar-common energy drink sold in stores)It all adds up to a very unhealthy amount of caffiene. Also the crashes that "tend" to happen after a couple hours prior to drinking an energy drink are linked to that of the high doeses of caffiene. Its also been included that the heart rate increase made from energy drinks is unhealthy due to it all being caffiene.<<

If you want to talk about an "unhealthy amount of caffeine", you need not look any further than here:
http://www.nextag.com...
These are 500mg caffeine pills. Many consumers take multiple pills at once, amounting to over 1000mg of caffeine. THAT is an unhealthy amount of caffeine. The average 8oz. serving of an energy drink (according to Wikipedia** http://en.wikipedia.org...) has only 80mg of caffeine. An entire 16oz. can has only 150mg of caffeine. For someone seeking enhanced mental alertness and wakefullness, 150mg of caffeine is not an excessive dose to achieve these effects. Hencethereforeto, an energy drink is an appropiate and desirable medium to administer this dosage.

**I apologize for citing Wikipedia, but I couldn't find its source that it cites in this statement (Mintel Energy Drink Report 2006, 07.05.06)

>>Sorry but this has nothing to do with anything. Still unhealthy. Sorry alex.<<
In reference to:
<<"Any intelligent drinker of energy drinks would know this and plan accordingly."- Antipatriot>>
In reference to the "crash" associated with energy drinks.

I don't know how you profess to know my name, but, I digress. My statement definitely has SOMETHING to do with SOMETHING. Why is it "still unhealthy"? Because you say it is? The "crash" that some of the drinkers of energy drinks experience is not, in and of itself, a BAD thing. The coming down period of caffeine is simply the body's natural function as it returns to homeostasis. If you are a responsible user, this crash would have not affect you in any negative manner. In fact, with the right timing, some could even use it as a sleep aid--making a positive out of a naturally occurring process.

>>By saying the second line your saying that they are unhealthy if not permanently but in short term. I would like to conclude that even though they may be convienent for the working trucker for needs a "pick me up", that does not help the case that over all the avg. energy drink is more unhealthy than healthy.<<

I believe you are reading between the lines my friend. That, and putting words in my mouth. I would like you to find where I state that energy drinks are "unhealthy in the short term". By saying that energy drinks are not permanently damaging, all I am saying is that energy drinks are not permanently damaging--no more, no less. Please don't try to tell me what I'm saying.

This was a good debate, but I find that my opponent has yet to prove that energy drinks are BAD for you. Every point he brought up about health and risk, can easily be either falsified, or refuted. It seems even he concedes to my point: "I would like to conclude that even though they may be convienent for the working trucker for needs a "pick me up", that does not help the case that over all the avg. energy drink is more unhealthy than healthy"

He just said that it did NOT help the case in proving that energy drinks are more UNhealthy than healthy. As I conclude, I would like to thank my opponent for the debate. Peace.
Debate Round No. 2
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by AntiPatriot 9 years ago
AntiPatriot
I bet two of those votes are your own, from both your accounts.
11 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Vote Placed by Krazzy_Player 3 years ago
Krazzy_Player
Black.Nite17AntiPatriotTied
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Vote Placed by ladygagadisco 4 years ago
ladygagadisco
Black.Nite17AntiPatriotTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Con did an excellent job of refuting Pro's arguments. Pro's second round doesn't really add any new arguments into the debate, but Con's excellent refutation and Pro's failure to meet the burden of proof made me vote con.
Vote Placed by AntiPatriot 8 years ago
AntiPatriot
Black.Nite17AntiPatriotTied
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Vote Placed by batman_is_dumb 9 years ago
batman_is_dumb
Black.Nite17AntiPatriotTied
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Vote Placed by padfo0t 9 years ago
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Vote Placed by kenicks 9 years ago
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Black.Nite17AntiPatriotTied
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Vote Placed by hiterstle 9 years ago
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Vote Placed by R.evoloution 9 years ago
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Vote Placed by redinbluestate 9 years ago
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Vote Placed by MadLib.eral 9 years ago
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