Can energy drinks kill you?

Jonathan being monitored at the hospital. - Submitted photo
Jonathan being monitored at the hospital.
— image credit: Submitted photo

How many energy drinks do you have to drink to die? For 15-year-old Forks High School student Jonathan Nardi, he may have been close to finding out. Last week, in the evening, Nardi had an energy drink. The next day he had one more before school, he bought “a bunch” more and thinks that he drank two, three, maybe four maybe more and then started really feeling bad. A friend took the drink away from him and he ended up seeing the school nurse.

At first Nardi said he felt like he needed to run … the nurse found his blood pressure elevated and Nardi decided he was going to walk to the hospital. When his great-aunt, Desi Dilley, was called, she said she would be over to take him to the emergency room. Dilley questioned Nardi on the phone as to how many he had drunk, he said maybe seven!
By the time Dilley got Nardi to the hospital he could barely walk, his legs were not working, his heart was pounding. His heart rate was 130. After being hooked up to monitors it took about three hours for his heart and blood pressure to get back to a normal rate. On top of the caffeine overload, Nardi also had to deal with a case of anxiety.
Dilley brought Nardi into the Forks Forum office to tell his story hoping it might spare someone a tragedy.
A new research study suggests that consuming energy drinks may be more harmful than previously thought. The study found that over-consumption of energy drinks can cause sudden cardiac deaths in young people who are otherwise healthy.
In December 2012, a 14-year-old Maryland girl died after allegedly drinking two large cans of a hyper-caffeinated beverage. Some energy drinks contain more than five times the caffeine in a cup of coffee and one energy drink even has the equivalent amount of caffeine that's in 13 sodas. The worst part? Energy drinks are barely regulated.



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