tests caffeine, vitamin levels in energy drinks tests caffeine, vitamin levels in energy drinks

Company reveals how much caffeine is actually in energy drinks and finds some drinks and dietary supplements don’t contain claimed amounts of B vitamins.  

Energy shots and drinks are promoted to keep you alert and energized, attributing their effects to special formulas often “packed with B vitamins and nutrients to make it last,” as a commercial for 5-hour Energy proclaims. But could it just be a lot of caffeine? “Certainly,” says President Tod Cooperman, M.D. “Many products don’t disclose how much caffeine they contain, but our tests show that a single small bottle of some of these drinks contains more caffeine than two full cups of coffee.” purchased and tested three of the most popular energy drinks: 5-hour Energy, Monster Energy M-3 Concentrate and Red Bull.

The energy drinks were tested as part of a larger Product Review of B Vitamin Supplements and Energy Drinks. B vitamins are the largest segment of the U.S. dietary supplement industry after multivitamins and sports supplements, with sales of $1.46 billion in 2011, according to Nutrition Business Journal. Out of 20 B complexes and single B vitamin supplements selected by for testing, five failed to accurately list amounts of one or more vitamins, containing far less (31 percent to 87 percent) and/or far more (182 percent to 265 percent) of what was expected. B complexes were more likely to fail testing than single B vitamin supplements. Two of the three energy drinks also failed to contain their listed amounts of folic acid, one of the B vitamins. cautioned that consumers should be mindful of potential side effects due to the large amounts of caffeine and vitamins attainable within the suggested daily serving sizes of energy drinks. “Just two bottles of 5-hour Energy or Monster M3 Concentrate puts you over the tolerable daily intake level for niacin, which can cause skin flushing and tingling, on top of the potential jitteriness of several hundred milligrams of caffeine,” says Dr. Cooperman.

The Product Review of B Vitamin Supplements and Energy Drinks is available online at Twenty-three of the products reviewed in the report were selected and purchased by Twelve additional products which passed’s Voluntary Certification Program are included in the report, as well as information about two products similar to another which passed testing. All products were purchased by and tested in independent laboratories. Failures to meet label claims were confirmed in a second independent laboratory. The following products are included in the report:

· 5-hour Energy

· Andrew Lessman's High Potency B-Complex

· Bluebonnet Biotin

· Country Life Biotin

· CVS/pharmacy Timed Release B-12

· Isotonix Activated B Complex

· Jamieson Natural Sources B12

· Jarrow Formulas Flush Free Niacinamide

· Kirkland (Costco) Signature Hi-Energy Complex B-100

· Klaire Labs Vitamin B6

· Life Extension Pantothenic Acid Vitamin B-5

· Monster Energy M-3 Super Concentrate

· Nature Made B-12 Vitamin

· Nature's Bounty Sublingual B-12

· Nature's Life Biotin Hair, Skin & Nails Formula

· Natural Factors B12 Methylcobalamin

· Nature's Plus High Potency Folic Acid Hearts

· Nature's Way Niacin

· NOW B-12

· Nutrilite Natural B Complex

· Puritan’s Pride Premium B-12

· PhysioLogics Flush Free Niacin

· Red Bull Energy Drink

· Rexall Sublingual High Potency B-12

· Rite Aid Folic Acid

· Simply Right (Sam's Club) Super B Complex with C

· Slo-Niacin

· Solaray Two-Stage, Timed-Release Vitamin B-6

· Solgar Sublingual Vitamin B12

· Spring Valley (Walmart) Sublingual Dots B-12

· Swanson Premium Brand Super Stress B-Complex with Vitamin C

· Target Up & Up Vitamin B12

· Twinlab Stress B-Complex Caps

· Vitafusion B Complex Energy Gummy Vitamins for Adults

· Vitamin Shoppe Vitamins B-Complex 100

· Vitamin World B-12

· Whole Foods Folic Acid


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