How Healthy Are Your Energy Sources?

Class, work, internships, homework and the gym—what else do college students have on their plate to worry about? With the obligation of keeping up with all these things and maintaining somewhat of a social life, they need their daily intake of caffeine to survive. But, how much caffeine is okay for the human body to take in? Is coffee a good choice? What about energy drinks or green tea?

Whether you drink green tea, energy drinks or coffee throughout the day, it all keeps you wired one way or another. It helps you, but only to a certain point. When you drink too much of it on a constant basis, then your body becomes used to it, and at a certain point it has no effect, and it doesn’t work well anymore. That means it’s a sign to take a break and give your body time to get away from it. In the long run, your body is affected by drinking a lot of caffeine.

That’s why in the end it’s best to use it in moderation when you really do feel exhausted and have no energy. Coffee works the best in the morning because it shakes you up as soon as you get out of bed. Energy drinks work better in the middle of the day to give you that extra boost so you can pull through the rest of your day. Green tea works well right before bed to cleanse your system out or first thing in the morning when you wake up.

Kayci Sagebiel
Kayci Sagebiel

According to an article by Brittany Farrell, a journalism student, “The Harvard School of Public Health website found that people who drank coffee in moderation reduced their risks of disease such as liver cancer, diabetes, Parkinson’s disease and heart disease,” Farrell said. Looks like something good comes along with drinking coffee, but let’s not forget about them calories!

ASU senior Kayci Sagebiel said, “Coffee helps me in the morning by helping me stay focused. It can be bad, but if you don’t drink it a lot you’re fine.”

So how about that sugar? When you are really craving something sweet, and don’t want pop, but want extra energy, why not resort to a Monster Energy or a Rockstar Energy Drink? Both of which keep you awake throughout the rest of your day. It’s best to stay away from these, but everyone has their own preference.

“A 2007 study conducted by the John Hopkins University School of Medicine found several health risks might come from energy drinks. This includes caffeine overdose, with symptoms like anxiety, nervousness and tremors and, in rare cases, death,” Farrell said.

Miranda Palmer
Miranda Palmer

Anxiety, death, really? Can energy drinks really cause this to happen? Sure, it’s definitely possible. Your heart can stop beating, and just imagining that is a pretty scary thought. ASU sophomore Miranda Palmer drinks energy drinks only once a week.

“They make me feel normal. I only drink them for the taste,” said Palmer. It’s best to resort to having an energy drink at least once or twice a week for your health and your body. Not having the time to go to the gym with a busy hectic schedule is normal for some college students.

So how can you cut the calories? Well, there are diets, or you can simply drink green tea, which burns calories each time you drink it. It’s delicious and has a simple taste to it, and in the end leaves you feeling wide awake.

“Green tea, which is a more natural route in helping yourself wake-up and feel energized, also offers health benefits such as lowering cholesterol, burning fat and fighting off dementia,” said Farrell. Not only are you burning fat, but it is actually healthy for your body.

Karen Elizais
Karen Elizais

“Green tea is very healthy, and gives you energy. In the morning when I wake up I drink some lemon tea, but during the day I stick to green tea,” said Karen Elizais, an ASU senior.

In sunny Arizona where the temperature rises to one hundred degrees, college students would prefer something more cold than hot. But, it’s all up to the person deciding whether or not they want to stay healthy or make things worse for their body. There are certain advantages and disadvantages to drinking coffee and energy drinks.With coffee you have health benefits like reducing cancer, but on the other hand, if you keep drinking it every day, you are consuming a lot of calories.

Energy drinks give you an extra boost of energy that leaves you feeling energetic and wired, but they can be prone to death and major anxiety. Green tea on the other hand, is completely natural, burns a lot of calories, leaves you feeling awake and is the most beneficial for a college student. Sure it’s hot, and most would prefer something cold, but think about the results in the long run and how your body will leave you feeling afterward.

Agnes Kozina

Photo Credits: Agnes Kozina

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