Washington: A new study has revealed that adolescents who consume high-caffeine energy drinks or "shots," are more likely to indulge in alcohol, cigarette, or drug use.
The same characteristics that attract young people to consume energy drinks- such as being "sensation-seeking or risk-oriented"- may make them more likely to use other substances as well, suggests the new research by Yvonne M. Terry-McElrath , MSA, and colleagues of the Institute for Social Research, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.
The researchers analyzed nationally representative data on nearly 22,000 US secondary school students (eighth, tenth, and twelfth graders).
In response to questionnaires, about 30 percent of teens reported using caffeine-containing energy drinks or shots. More than 40 percent said they drank regular soft drinks every day, while 20 percent drank diet soft drinks daily.
It was found that boys were more likely to use energy drinks than girls. Use was also higher for teens without two parents at home and those whose parents were less educated. Perhaps surprisingly, the youngest teens (eighth graders) were most likely to use energy drinks or shots.
Students who used energy drinks or shots were also more likely to report recent use of alcohol, cigarettes, and illicit drugs. A
Soft drink consumption was also related to substance use. However, the associations were much stronger for energy drinks/shots.
The study was published in the Journal of Addiction Medicine.