Keep those energy drinks away from children

A study that analyzed calls to the National Poison Data System  (that’s the database for poison control) tracked the number of calls of a toxic exposure from dietary supplements. From 2000-2012, the study found almost 275,000 exposure to these supplements; the most common and some of the most toxic came from energy products. About half of those dietary supplement exposures were to kids younger than age 6.

Children exposed to these supplements reported having tachycardia, vomiting, nausea, irritability, drowsiness and dizziness.

Pilot Andrew Over takes a mock drink of a Red Bull can before taking off at the Red Bull Flugtag 2007. Ralph Barrera/AMERICAN-STATESMAN 2007

The American Academy of Pediatrics wants the FDA to do more to regulate these supplements, including energy products.

In 2004, the FDA banned the use of ma huang (ephedra) in supplements. That was the year five kids died from exposure. Since that ban, the number of ma huang exposures have decreased.

“Our results demonstrate the need for FDA regulation of yohimbe and energy products in the U.S. as was done successfully with ma huang products in 2004,” the study authors wrote in the press release with the study.

Author: Nicole Villalpando

Nicole Villalpando writes about families in the Raising Austin blog and the Raising Austin column on Saturdays. She also offers a weekly and monthly family calendar at She tweets at @raisingaustin.

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