Botswana has turned into an energy need zone and has led to the abused use of energy supplements mainly drinks, although good to the seller’s pocket there is a realisation that these drinks are now not being used for energy but rather as cold drinks which is dangerous to their health due to high consumption; Pheto Segatlhe writes…
Energy drinks are beverages that contain ingredients marketed to increase energy and mental performance. These beverages are meant to help fatigue but this is not the case with the everyday Motswana, most Batswana have replaced cold drinks with energy drinks as a result the abuse energy drinks has sky rocketed.
Energy drinks contain high amounts of caffeine which is one of the key ingredients contained in energy drinks to stimulate brain function and increase alertness and concentration. Caffeine may boost the body’s performance levels but consuming high amounts of caffeine deteriorates the body by causing countless side effects.
A small business owner, Catherine Boy said “most of my buyers buy and consume an average of 3 to 4 energy drinks a day, some of them even go to an extent of eating fat cakes with an energy drink. These beverages are good for business considering that in summer they sell more than bottled water but the rate at which individuals consume them daily is very high, which is unhealthy”.
“Majority of my customers are combi drivers and you would find that they buy and consume an energy for every two trips they make along their routes which is not good for them, I try by all means to discourage them and make them aware of the dangers of abusing energy drinks” she added.
Reports state that the abuse of energy drinks may cause serious heart and blood vessel problems such as heart rhythm disturbances and increases in heart rate and blood pressure. It has also been stated that caffeine also may harm children’s still-developing cardiovascular and nervous systems. Furthermore the abuse of such beverages may also be associated with anxiety, sleep problems, digestive problems, and dehydration.
As their popularity across the country increases, they’ve brought a new trend with them- mixing caffeinated beverages with alcohol. The combination of energy drinks and alcohol has masked the feeling of being drunk while keeping drinkers up for hours. This practise can be dangerous particularly among teens and young adults and, in rare cases, deadly.
Botswana is currently in a bind with the ever evolving Corona virus; therefore Batswana should refrain from neglecting their health adding more health problems such as the abuse of energy drinks into the mix.