Red Bull, the energy drink founded in 1987, has been sold in more than 166 countries. More than 5 billion cans were sold worldwide in 2013 alone. The drink provides an energy boost through a combination of nutrients and ingredients. Red Bull is available in four varieties, including original, sugar-free, total zero and fruit-flavored editions.
Caffeine is one energy-boosting ingredient in Red Bull. Every 8.4-fluid-ounce can contains 80 milligrams of caffeine, which is about the same amount found in a cup of coffee. In addition to giving you energy, caffeine can also help with physical performance. In a 2004 study published in the "International Journal of Sports Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism," subjects who consumed caffeine before exercise showed improvements in endurance performance and duration.
Sugars and Sweeteners
One can of Red Bull contains 27 grams -- or about 7 teaspoons -- of sugar. Both the sugar-free and total zero varieties contain zero grams of sugar, but they do include artificial sweeteners such as sucralose, aspartame and acesulfame K. Research is inconclusive on the longterm health effects or benefits of consuming artificial sweeteners, as of 2014. Depending on the type, artificial sweeteners can be from 180 to 13,000 times sweeter than regular table sugar.
B vitamins are essential for the metabolism of carbohydrates, fats and proteins in the body. They also help to extract energy from these nutrients to provide the body with the fuel it needs to function and perform physical activity. Red Bull contains significant amounts of the B vitamins niacin, B6, B12 and pantothenic acid. Each 8.4-ounce can contains 100 percent of your daily needs for niacin, 250 percent for B6, 80 percent for B12 and 50 percent for pantothenic acid.
Taurine is one of the most abundant amino acids in your body. It's used for supporting nervous system function, regulating heartbeat, and maintaining cell membranes. While it is not necessary to consume taurine in the diet, it is present in Red Bull, as well as foods like meat, poultry, dairy and eggs.
- Red Bull: Who Makes Red Bull?
- Red Bull: Products
- Red Bull: Caffeine content Red Bull
- International Journal of Sports Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism: Effects of caffeine ingestion on exercise testing: a meta analysis
- Red Bull: Sucrose and Glucose
- Red Bull Nutrition Facts: Calories and other nutrition information
- Harvard School of Public Health: Artificial Sweeteners
- Bridgewater State University: B-complex vitamins' role in energy release
- NYU Langone Medical Center: Taurine
- Red Bull: Taurine content
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