Nutritionists Weigh in on the Best Energy Drinks


541


courtesy

We updated this article in November 2022 to ensure all picks selected by the Good Housekeeping Institute Nutrition Lab were in stock and accurately priced.


Looking to improve your stamina and energy levels? Quick fixes are available, but quality sleep, optimal hydration (with good old H2O) and a balanced diet are the ultimate tools for improving energy in the long run. But many turn to caffeine and energy drinks for a quick boost. For most, moderate intake — that’s a maximum of 400 mg of caffeine per day or about four or five cups of coffee, according to the U.S. Food & Drug Administration — should be okay. But most energy drinks are also laden with food colorings, additives and exorbitant amounts of added sugar.

If you’re looking for a healthier option, the experts in the Good Housekeeping Institute Nutrition Lab compiled a list of some of the better energy drink picks that focus on low added sugar counts and prioritize natural sources of caffeine (as opposed to synthetic caffeine). Our experts say it’s important to check the caffeine content on the label so you can avoid more than 200 mg of caffeine per drink (the equivalent of two cups of coffee), especially if you are consuming other caffeinated beverages and foods during the day. You’ll find that many options are also fortified with B vitamins which may provide an additional natural boost. Here are the best energy drinks of 2022.

Our top picks:

At the end of this guide, you can read more about how we evaluate energy drinks in our Lab, as well as the difference between natural and synthetic caffeine plus who should avoid energy drinks.

Advertisement – Continue Reading Below

1

Best Stevia Energy Drink

Zevia

Zero Calorie Energy Drink

Learn more:

Caffeine 120 mg
Nutrition facts (1 can) 0 calories, 0 g total fat, 0 mg sodium, 0 g total carbs, 0 g sugar, 0 g protein
2

Best Tasting Energy Drink

ZOA

Zero Sugar Health Warrior Energy Drink

Learn more:

Caffeine 160 mg
Nutrition facts (1 can) 15 calories, 0 g total fat, 200 mg sodium, 3 g total carbohydrate, 0 g total sugars, 0 g added sugars, 0 g protein
3

Best Energy Drink Tablets

Nuun

Energy

Learn more:

Caffeine 80 mg
Nutrition facts (1 tablet) 15 calories, 4 g total carb, 2 g total sugars, 2 g added sugars, 100 mg sodium
4

Best Organic Energy Drink

Sambazon

Amazon Energy

Caffeine 120 mg
Nutrition facts (1 can) 40 calories, 0 g total fat, 70 mg sodium, 19 g total carbohydrate, 7 g total sugars, <1 g protein
5

Best Energy Drink for Focus

LIFEAID

FOCUSAID Clean Energy

Learn more:

Caffeine 100 mg
Nutrition facts (1 can) 40 calories, 9 g total carbohydrates, 7 g total sugars, 7 g added sugars, 0 g protein
6

Best Sugar-Free Energy Drink

Alani Nu

Sugar-Free Energy Drink

Learn more:

Caffeine 200 mg
Nutrition facts (1 can) 15 calories, 0 g total fat, 6 g total carb, 0 g total sugar, 0 g added sugar, 0 g protein
7

Best Low-Calorie Energy Drink

Rowdy Energy

Rowdy Energy Drink

Learn more:

Caffeine 160 mg
Nutrition facts (1 can) 5 calories, 0 g total fat, 50 mg sodium, 2 g total carb, 0 g total sugar, 9 g erythritol, 0 g protein
8

Best Kombucha Energy Drink

Remedy Kombucha

Good Energy

Learn more:

Caffeine 60 mg
Nutrition facts (1 can) 5 calories, 0 g total fat, 0 mg sodium, 4 g total carb, 0 g total sugar, 4 g erythritol, 0 g protein

How we evaluate energy drinks

Our registered dietitians evaluated dozens of energy drinks, zoning in on added-sugar content, ingredient lists and caffeine sources. We selected picks with lower added-sugar counts and prioritized options with natural sources of caffeine as opposed to synthetic caffeine. Our pros say to limit consumption to no more than one can a day. Try to cap added sugar counts at 8 grams (the equivalent of 2 teaspoons of sugar) per can and do not mix energy drinks with alcohol.

Ultimately, energy drinks provide only a temporary burst of energy. For more sustained effects, our experts recommend prioritizing a balanced diet, adequate hydration and regular physical activity to optimize energy levels in the long term.

Who should avoid energy drinks?

Energy drinks are not recommended for children and adolescents and should be avoided by these individuals as per the CDC and the American Academy of Pediatrics. Adults with caffeine sensitivity should avoid the consumption of energy drinks as well.

Since high doses of caffeine may exacerbate cardiac conditions, individuals with a known history of heart disease should avoid energy drinks. Those who are pregnant and breastfeeding should limit energy drink usage as well.

What is the difference between natural and synthetic caffeine?

Natural and synthetic versions of caffeine are almost identical, chemistry-wise. The natural variety is found in the leaves and seeds of many plants and shows up in coffee, tea and chocolate. Some companies add caffeine sourced from coffee or cacao beans or yerba mate leaves to their products.

The synthetic kind is made in a lab or pharmaceutical plant and is often added to beverages like soda and energy drinks to enhance the stimulant effects. There is nothing wrong with either version of caffeine, but typically products with synthetic caffeine contain a lot of other additives and sugar.

Why trust Good Housekeeping?

As deputy director of the Good Housekeeping Institute Nutrition Lab for the past three years, Stefani Sassos handles all nutrition content, product testing and evaluation. She stays up-to-date on the latest research to provide evidence-based reporting on all things diet and nutrition, and she also runs large-scale tests and analyses for products ranging from protein bars to supplements. Stefani also has expertise in the fitness industry for the last 10 years as a cycling instructor and NASM-Certified Personal Trainer and oversees all fitness content for Good Housekeeping.

Advertisement – Continue Reading Below



Source link


Like it? Share with your friends!

541
Decors Mag