Consumption of Energy Drinks Among College Students in Quebec – Energy Drinks in the News (SPIN ALERT)

Turns out not a lot of college students in Quebec drink energy drinks, but watch out for how the news will spin concern about those who do.

Here’s the journal article (via capture because there’s no link to read the full thing):



This study involves over TEN THOUSAND college students across THIRTY-SIX different public colleges in Quebec.

Out of the 10,283 people who participated in the survey, only ~9.1% reported consuming an energy drink at least once a week in the previous month.

This means 9,348 out of 10,283 college students surveyed do not have an energy drink every week (like, zero energy drinks at all? For the whole week? In college?)



Because this is college, the study also looked at alcohol consumption and use of cannabis, glues/solvents, and amphetamines.

FACT – Mixing energy drinks and alcohol is a baaaaaaaaadddd idea. This study properly suggests that combination of alcohol and energy drinks poses a risk for serious adverse effects. 

FALSE – Any statements like “college students who use energy drinks are more likely to abuse psychoactive substances…more likely to demonstrate excessive use of alcohol”

Approximately 1-in-4 people (247 out of 935, ~26%) who said they drink at least one energy drink said they also use psychoactive substances. This finding is not proof that energy drinks were a gateway to psychoactive substances for these people. How many people use psychoactive substances but not energy drinks?

There were even fewer people who reported consuming alcohol-energy drink combos (109 out of 935 people. 1.1%).

That means I have at least 109 more people to convince that this combo is a waste of booze (because you won’t feel it/can’t enjoy it) and a dangerous idea (because you won’t feel drunk, but you ARE in fact impaired).



The journal article conclusion reads

“A majority of respondents are not heavy users of ED (energy drinks), AED (alcohol+energy drinks), or ED with drugs.”

Can we just stop there and celebrate that for a minute before we give fodder to the “Energy Drinks are Poison” camp?

“Yet, the profiles of ED consumption potentially harmful to health that characterize some participants indicate that the potential health consequences of such behaviour are of concern.”

I am worried this last line will get translated as, “some participants who consume energy drinks exhibit behavior that is potentially harmful to health, so we should probably be worried about all energy drink consumers.”




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GreenEyedGuide to speak at Cal State Fullerton April 26th, 2017

Calling all GreenEyedGuide fans in Southern California! I will be speaking at Cal State Fullerton on April 26th, 2017 as part of the COMM Week L.I.F.E. Symposium. I will be discussing “The 5 Levels of Fatigue” and how to use this system to stay healthy, happy, and energized.

This event will take place at the Titan Student Union, Pub (Lower Level), at Cal State Fullerton, at 8:30 pm on Wednesday, April 26th, 2017. Event details are below:

[Event Link]


Please come support GreenEyedGuide at this free event!

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Energy Drink of the Month – August 2013

I know you don’t want to hear it, or read it, but I’m going to say it anyway – summer is ending. If you’re like me, you spend your nights plotting how to make the summer last just a little bit longer, contemplating which adventures you simply must fit in your schedule before the wind starts getting chilly and the sun isn’t waiting for you to get off work before it sets.
There are several aspects of this month’s chosen drink that make it perfect for this time of year, but first, it’s important to understand a few seasonal environmental factors that will affect one’s energy level.

1 – Changes in sleep schedule.

If you’re of school age, your days of staying up til 2 a.m. and sleeping in past noon are numbered. Getting used to waking up early might be a difficult transition for some, so a little help in the form of caffeine might be necessary.  Even if you’re NOT a student, you may have noticed a significant change in freeway traffic. With less people driving to and from school, there’s usually fewer cars on the road. For many working adults, that means not having to wake up QUITEso early to beat the traffic to work. My, my, we’re in for a shock once schools go back into session. When you have to wake up earlier and earlier to avoid “Please-don’t-rear-end-me” freeway phobias, you may need some help waking up. Driving tired is at just as dangerous as driving drunk.


2 – Sun-daze.

It’s not unusual to feel fatigued after a long day in the sun, even if all you did was work on your tan. This “sun fatigue” has several suggested causes, ranging from dehydration to increased production of certain vitamins to increased UV damage and subsequent inflammation of the skin (the largest organ of the body). If playing or basking in the sun leaves you feeling wiped out, you may need something to wake you up for your evening activities.

3 – Cramming.

If you’ve made a summer bucket list, you may feel the heat as you try to check every activity off your list before the summer ends. Hey, if the days are longer, why not try to cram everything into one week, right? Sure, why not, but that hustle and bustle leaves some a bit winded.
For all three situations above, caffeine is just ONE solution. Getting more sleep, getting less sun or driving to lively music instead of news radio are also helpful solutions to these scenarios. For these situations, you don’t need a high-powered shock of energy, only a gentle boost. That’s precisely why I’ve picked Archer Farms Pomegranate Blueberry for the Energy Drink of the Month for August 2013.
This drink is exceptionally enjoyable on a hot summer day and its 12-ounce size makes it easy to carry. It’s 40% juice so you won’t have to worry about how the heat affects carbonation (carbonation and heat do not get along). Moreover, each can contains only one serving with a whopping 70 milligrams of caffeine. That’s just 10 milligrams short of the caffeine in a Red Bull or Starbucks Frappuccino, but it’s significantly less caffeine than other ready-to-go/convenience factor caffeine sources like McD’s iced coffee or Starbucks’ bottled Iced Coffee.
Make no mistake, though this drink is fortified with vitamins and contains ginseng and taurine, caffeine is the active ingredient. In nature, pomegranates and blueberries are loaded with antioxidants but the juice itself, not as much. The sugar (19 grams per serving) will also help with battling fatigue but there are sugar-free versions for those trying to limit their added sugars.

Bottom Line

According to the 5 Levels of Fatigue outlined in the book ARE YOU A MONSTER OR A ROCK STAR: a guide to energy drinks, this product would be at the upper end of Fatigue Level 2: Too Tired to Go It Alone. There are alternatives to caffeine to beat the August-specific causes of fatigue, but for those who do turn to caffeine, start small. Save the high-powered drinks with upwards of 120 milligrams for the days when the sun is only out for your lunch break or for the all-nighter midterms study sessions.
With only 70 milligrams of caffeine amidst the crisp, refreshing juice of a pomegranate-blueberry combo and the light sweetness of pear juice (ahem, the first juice listed on the Ingredient Line), this is the perfect energy drink for the month of August.

Additional Resources

What’s Good at Archer Farms review

Caffeine Informer (note Caffeine Content may be different than the caffeine amount stated on the can)