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Are energy drinks hazardous for your health?

Posted May 25 2010 10:06am

JACKSONVILLE, FL — Energy drinks are a monster business, according to Beverage Digest, bringing in 6.9 billion dollars in business last year. But are they safe? Adverse reaction reports to the Florida Poison Information Center control in our area have gone up more than 400 percent in one year and one Florida mom says what her son didn’t know about the caffeine content may have contributed to his death.

Cheryl James constantly relives the night her world changed forever.  “I told everyone you better hit your knees and you better pray hard. And I was screaming for Drew to fight.”

Her 19 year old son Drew and his friends had been hanging out. Lance Colbert remembers, “We were just standing out there talking and his head went back.”

Jason Mullins was also there. “When he passed out, he fell straight back and started having a mini seizure.”

Cheryl never had a chance to speak to her son again. “He’s 19. You don’t just die. You don’t just die. “

The medical examiner determined her teenager died of a cardiac arrhythmia due to ischemic cardiomyopathy. Cheryl wanted to know what could have triggered the arrhythmia in such a young man.

At first, mom worried it could have been drugs. But the medical examiner found only traces of a chemical compound found in marijuana in Drew’s blood and urine, along with nicotine and caffeine. “Two days later Jason came over and slammed an energy drink on the table near my computer and said this is what killed Drew. You’ll find out.”

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