Scientists Sound the Alarm on Cheap Energy Drinks, Linking 25p Cans to a Rise in Insomnia

Scientists have found that the consumption of energy drinks, even in small quantities such as a few cans per week, might be a contributing factor to the increasing prevalence of insomnia among young adults, as indicated by recent research findings.

A study involving individuals aged 18 to 35 revealed that daily consumption of these beverages led to approximately 30 minutes less sleep compared to those who drank them occasionally or not at all.

The research indicates a correlation between the quantity of energy drinks consumed and the reduction in nightly sleep hours, resulting in increased daytime fatigue. 

For men, having two or three drinks weekly was associated with a 35% higher likelihood of bedtime after midnight, a 52% higher chance of sleeping less than six hours, and a 60% increased probability of waking in the night compared to rare or non-consumers.

Women, on the other hand, exhibited a 20% higher likelihood of a bedtime after midnight, a 58% increased chance of sleeping less than six hours, and a 24% higher probability of waking during the night, if they consumed two or three drinks a week.

These findings follow a recent study advocating for a ban on the sale of all energy drinks to young individuals in the UK, due to reported associations with anxiety, stress, and suicidal thoughts. 

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Scientists Scrutinize Energy Drinks

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Scientists have found that the consumption of energy drinks, even in small quantities such as a few cans per week, might be a contributing factor to the increasing prevalence of insomnia among young adults, as indicated by recent research findings.

Scientists are closely examining energy drinks, given their high caffeine and sugar content, sparking discussions about potential restrictions and proposals to cease their sale to individuals under 16 in England.

Some major retailers and supermarkets have already voluntarily implemented restrictions on the sale of energy drinks to under-16s. 

The latest study, published in BMJ Open, surveyed 53,266 Norwegian students, exploring their energy drink consumption frequency and sleep patterns, including bedtime, wake-up time, sleep duration, and nighttime awakenings.

Insomnia, defined as consistent difficulties falling and staying asleep, along with waking early at least three nights a week, coupled with daytime tiredness for a minimum of three days a week over three months, was used as a key metric.

The study enlisted experts from various Norwegian institutions, including the universities of Bergen and Oslo. 

Gavin Partington, representing the British Soft Drinks Association, cautioned that the study, being observational, does not establish a causal link between energy drinks and sleep disturbances, as acknowledged by the authors.

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