The New York Times Reveals That 18 Servings of an Energy Drink Might Be Excessive

In case you are not alarmed yet by the threat that insufficiently regulated energy drinks pose to the nation, The New York Times tries a new angle:

Among the latest entrants in the energy industry's caffeine race is a pocket-size squeeze bottle called Mio Energy. Each half-teaspoon serving of Mio, which is sold by Kraft Foods, releases 60 milligrams of caffeine in a beverage, the amount in a six-ounce cup of coffee.

Actually, depending on the type of coffee and how it is made, that six-ounce cup might contain twice as much caffeine as one serving of Mio Energy. But wait:

One size of the bottle, which users can repeatedly squeeze, contains 18 servings, or 1,060 milligrams, of caffeine—more than enough, health specialists say, to sicken children and some adults, and even send some of them to the hospital. 

Yes, and if you drink 18 espressos, you'll be ingesting something like 1,800 milligrams of caffeine. If you swallow all 60 caplets in a bottle of maximum-strength No Doz (scandalously available without a prescription), you'll get 12,000 milligrams of caffeine, which is 11 times as scary as the scenario sketched by the Times.

As I mentioned on Monday, the trigger for the latest outbreak of caffeine-related anxiety was a lawsuit filed by the parents of a 14-year-old girl with a genetic vulnerability who died of heart arrhythmia after drinking two 24-ounce cans of a Monster energy drink. Each of those cans contained 240 milligrams of caffeine, 90 fewer than a 16-ounce cup of Starbucks coffee. 

Bruce Goldberger, a toxicologist at the University of Florida in Gainesville, complains to the Times that the FDA's approach to energy drinks "has been laissez-faire" and wonders, "What is it going to take to cause them to take action?" I don't know. Maybe another media-fed panic, like the one Goldberger helped set off as a critic of Four Loko?

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  • Pro Libertate||

    I AM CORNHOLIO!

  • T||

    Settle down, Beavis.

  • Auric Demonocles||

    I bought a 10 pack of 5 hour energy yesterday. Maybe I'll make a giant 5hour and vodka drink for my party this weekend.

  • NoVAHockey||

    I pre-made a vodka drink for a Christmas party a few years back. poured half back into an empty juice bottle. when the serving pitcher was low, i topped it off from the juice bottle. a few guests saw me doing that and thought it was just cranberry and added more vodka to their drinks. made for an interesting evening.

  • R C Dean||

    Reminds me of my wedding reception, which we held at our house.

    It was a brutally hot day. I made up a large batch of margaritas from a proper recipe (that is, the main ingredient was tequila).

    People were knocking them back like they were cheapass restaurant margaritas.

    Lulz ensued.

  • Auric Demonocles||

    I was in San Antonio last week and got a couple of margiritas at an off the beaten track Mexican place I stumbled across. I'm not sure if they used a proper recipe, but I am sure that they were delicious and I was buzzed after only 2.

  • Gray Ghost||

    I made up a large batch of margaritas from a proper recipe (that is, the main ingredient was tequila)...

    ...Lulz ensued.

    This. 3/2/1 tequila/lime juice/orange liquor of some sort, goes down like limeade and will obliterate people in nothing flat. Especially if you use a decent silver.

    It's right up there with Gin and Tonics for fastest, easiest, tastiest alcohol delivery system I know of.

  • The Hammer||

    I drink the whiskey drink
    I drink the vodka drink
    and when I have to pee
    I use the kitchen sink

  • Mint Berry Crunch||

    Next, they're going to tell me that eating nothing but McDonald's for a month is unhealthy.

  • IceTrey||

    McDonalds has salads, so you could eat healthy there.

  • Ted Levy||

    I'm a full fledged laissez-faire guy on this issue, too, Jacob, but you gotta admit its easier to squeeze several doses of Mio Energy into your beverage than to drink (let Lone pay for) several cups of Starbucks

  • Ptah-Hotep||

    I'm a full fledged laissez-faire guy on this issue, too, Jacob, but you gotta admit its easier to squeeze several doses of Mio Energy into your beverage than to drink (let Lone pay for) several cups of Starbucks

    And?

  • Adam330||

    Plenty of people drink several cups of coffee every morning. It's quite simple to do.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    18?

  • Adam330||

    A Venti is 24 ounces, so it's equivalent to 8 of the Mio Energy drops. I've certainly seen people have 2 Venties in a morning. Is there any evidence that anyone puts 18 drops of the Mio stuff in a beverage?

  • IceTrey||

    Each Mio has 18 SERVINGS. Each serving is two or three squirts, depending on how long the squirts are. You make it to taste.

  • JW||

    Who the fuck lit the irritating pedant beacon?

  • Whiterun Guard||

    I thought it was the beer chick switch. We really shouldn't have put those next to each other.

  • T||

    Lit it? Fuck that, how do we put it out? It's always on around here, like an eternal flame.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Apparently questioning an unspoken and crucial assumption of a libertarian's argument is now pedantry. Sullum's entire argument is based on comparing energy drinks to coffee.

  • Ptah-Hotep||

    the parents of a 14-year-old girl with a genetic vulnerability who died of heart arrhythmia after drinking two 24-ounce cans of a Monster energy drink.

    I blame the parents for not getting their daughter genetically tested. Then they could have warned her not to have a Monster energy drink.

  • Lord Humungus||

    googling "Anais Fournier" - the girl who dies - shows a 14yo with HUGE eyes. But some other pics they look more normal-sized. It must have been the energy drink.

  • Loki||

    The parents should also be punished for naming their daughter "Anais". Especially when you consider how much the "i" looks like an "l" in some fonts.

  • Whiterun Guard||

    Maybe University of Florida should patent a few energy drinks just to shut Goldberger the hell up.

    Gator Nation, I am disappoint.

  • Pro Libertate||

    Our energy drink has electrolytes and pours easily over victorious coaches.

  • Whiterun Guard||

    Exactly, and I don't see any of them bitching about the carbos.

    Or are we trying to get rid of these kind of energy drinks to increase Gatorade sales?

  • Ptah-Hotep||

    Or are we trying to get rid of these kind of energy drinks to increase Gatorade sales?

    No, I just think he is a puritan asshat. From the UF|Dept of Pathology

    Dr. Goldberger has published numerous articles related to forensic toxicology and is co-editor of the Handbook of Workplace Drug Testing (AACC Press) and On-Site Drug Testing (Humana Press).
  • Pro Libertate||

    At last you understand. Soon, our drink will be the only drink legally available.

  • Rasilio||

    And electrolytes are what plants need

  • Pro Libertate||

    What they crave.

  • Zeb||

    Don't tell these people that you can buy vodka in containers which contain enough alcohol to kill a person. Or aspirin, acetomenphen, salt, peppermint oil and even water, if you try really hard.

  • Scruffy Nerfherder||

    NOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!

    It can't be true!

  • Whiterun Guard||

    So you're saying that the ATF should have another division for caffeine? The CATF?

  • Scruffy Nerfherder||

    I heard you can kill yourself by eating rat poison that can be bought at a grocery store. Unbelievable.

  • Gray Ghost||

    Or even caffeine. Are we banning No-Doz pills next?

    FWIW, caffeine overdose is a phenomenally shitty way to die.

  • Tim||

    So I shouldn't eat 12 Costco apple pies in one sitting?

  • Loki||

    You know, millions of people die each day after leaving their houses. Maybe we should outlaw going outside. It's scary and dangerous out there.

  • ||

    You have to leave the house to go to work and feed the Leviathan.

  • Loki||

    Telecommuting will be required. Most of our jobs these days are office jobs anyway, right? The only people who work jobs that actually require them to do anything outside are icky low wage blue collar types anyway, and who gives a shit about them. /sarc (in case it wasn't obvious before)

  • Ptah-Hotep||

    Telecommuting will be required.

    This will also save on greenhouse emissions. You are safer, Gaia is safer; what you would call a win/win.

  • IceTrey||

    Millions of people die in their homes every year.

  • Whiterun Guard||

    Maybe we should just make everyone move.

  • Loki||

    "Let's Move!" - The first Wookie

  • ||

    One size of the bottle, which users can repeatedly squeeze, contains 18 servings, or 1,060 milligrams, of caffeine

    Did you hear that?! They can repeatedly squeeze it! Repeatedly! Won't someone think of the children?

  • T||

    I can think of something else children can repeatedly squeeze...

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Wait, were you that guy in the trenchcoat at the movie theater when I went to see Muppets Take Manhattan?

  • T||

    No, I go to Muppet movies in character as Animal.

  • Tim||

    Assault Weapon!!

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Yes, and if you drink 18 espressos, you'll be ingesting something like 1,800 milligrams of caffeine.

    It's extremely difficult to drink 18 espressos in one sitting, regardless of the caffeine effects. The nannies do have a valid point when saying that more traditional caffeine ingestion methods are essentially impossible to OD with because the caffeine in them is much more diluted.

    As for the caffeine pills, yes they are potentially dangerous. If you're a nanny stater and think people must be protected from harming themselves with dangerous things that they should be aware are dangerous if used improperly, then it's totally consistent to oppose No Doz.

    Of course if you're not a nanny stater, it's another matter.

  • Adam330||

    Why is it extremely difficult to drink 18 espressos in one sitting? They are very small. They certainly wouldn't fill you up. Of course, virtually no one actually does this, but there's also no evidence that anyone is putting 18 drops of the Mio Energy in their beverages either.

  • T||

    Mainly because the slackers working at the coffee shop won't bring them fast enough. I can't keep my IV full at the speed those lazy bastards move.

  • GILMORE||

    One size of the bottle, which users can repeatedly sueeze...

    Methinks the NYT writer might have been staring at the associated article photo while he wrote that.

  • txgypsy||

    first they came for my psudophedrine,which fixed my allergies....then they came for my four loco...which helped me come down from my 3 screw top cans of monster daily night shift employment grind....now they are after my MIO????WTF???does my government hate me or something?? Im just surprised coca cola aint all over this.....those small squeeze bottles run me about $4 each...same price as large can of monster....18 squeezes..(actually i get 20 to 22 squeezes myself)should last me about 4 days....its hella lot cheaper and not carbonated.....FUCKING GOVT!!!! GET OUT OF MY SIPPY CUP!!!!!

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