Energy drinks are the gateway to cocaine addiction, study finds

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Energy drinks are the gateway to cocaine addiction, study finds

Young people who regularly consume energy drinks are significantly more likely to use cocaine in later life, new research reveals.

In particular, it was found that among people aged 25 years are more often faced with abuse of alcohol and psychoactive stimulants (in particular cocaine) among those who at an earlier age regularly drink energy.

Amelia Arria, of Maryland University, said: "This study gives evidence of a specific contribution of energy drink consumption to later substance use".

Of the 1,099 participants more than half drank large amounts over a long time - and were far more likely to use drugs and abuse alcohol.

Marketed primarily to youth, some branding has adopted imagery or slogans that denote risky or aggressive behaviours (e.g., Monster Energy, Red Bull).

The 17.4 percent of individuals who fell into the "intermediate trajectory" group also had an increased risk of substance use by age 25, while those whose consumption was nil or tailed off over time saw no adverse effects.

According to Mintel Global New Products Database (GNPD), Germany has overtaken the United States as the top energy drink innovator with the highest rates of new product development (NPD) in 2015. Interestingly, the researchers found no correlation between energy drink use and marijuana consumption.

This is particularly due to energy drinks not being regulated by the FDA, as well as such beverages not being required to list their specific caffeine content.

These students were surveyed at regular intervals between the ages of 21-25 in order to track changes in various health and risk-taking behaviours, including energy drink consumption and drug use. The findings were published in the journal Drug and Alcohol Dependence.

Dr Arria said: 'Future studies should focus on younger people, because we know that they too are regularly consuming.

'We want to know whether or not adolescents are similarly at risk for future substance use'.

There's probably a lot of parents wondering the same thing.

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