Doctor: Energy Drinks, Booze Don't Mix
January 2, 2007 4:04pm CST
High caffeine energy drinks, a hit with high school and college students, may pose health risks when mixed with alcohol, a U.S. medical professional said. Mixing the two poses physical dangers including cardiovascular risks, shortness of breath and dizziness, ABC News said. "You can hinder your respiration," said Roger A. Clemens, of the University of Southern California's School of Pharmacy. "A rapid heart rate is a common side effect" -- and life threatening if the heart isn't healthy. Caffeine levels in energy drinks range from 80 milligrams (equivalent to a cup of coffee) to 150 milligrams. Between 200 milligrams to 300 milligrams of caffeine a day is considered moderate for a healthy adult, the American Dietetic Association said. Some medical professionals said they don't think the medical risks of combining energy drinks and alcohol are great, but mixing them still poses risks. Drinkers "should be more concerned over the impairment in their judgment. It may impair (their) reality and cause the person to think they are less drunk because they are more awake," Kevin Weissman, director of drug information at the LAC-USC Medical Center.