Energy drinks Do they really deliver energy

By Golf Fitness MagazineFebruary 12, 2009, 5:00 pm
Energy is a hot commodity these days with our fast-paced lives trying to squeeze everything from work to family to the all important play time. The result is often a schedule that is a jam-packed and no energy to do everything we want to be able to do. Instead of getting more rest, eating right, and exercising regularly, many people turn to energy drinks to give them an added boost.
 
Energy drinks are basically soft drinks that either contain a form of sugar or artificial sweetener, caffeine, and various other ingredients. Energy drinks became a unique beverage category in 1997 when Red Bull was introduced to the United States from Austria. From 2001 to 2006, there was a 516 percent increase in U.S. sales of energy drinks. The market hit $5.4 billion in 2007 and is expected to reach $10 billion by 2010. Sugar-free energy drinks are one of the fastest growing segments of the energy drink market due to concerns of calories and excess carbohydrates from sugar.
 

Anatomy of an energy drink


Caffeine
The main active ingredient in energy drinks is caffeine. Caffeine is a stimulant, so it does give at least the appearance of energy because it stimulates the brain and central nervous system. Caffeine can come in a variety of forms, and many energy drinks contain guarana or yerba mate, both plants containing caffeine.
 
Surprisingly, energy drinks are not as high in caffeine as you may think. Most have about 80 milligrams (mg) of caffeine in an 8 oz. can, and the 16 oz. cans may have double that. However, some energy drinks have as much as 350 mg in a can. To put this into perspective, an average cup of coffee has 140 mg per 8 oz., or 250 in a Starbucks tall (12 oz.). A can of soda has between 35-55 mg of caffeine, and a cup of tea has about 50 mg. The FDA does not require caffeine content to be on labels, so it is difficult to know exactly how much caffeine is in a beverage. Some energy drink Web sites reveal the amount of caffeine contained in their products.
 
Some studies have found that caffeine does indeed help improve cognitive and athletic performance, but most studies do not support a significant effect. The risks of excessive caffeine intake can outweigh these potential positive effects. Too much caffeine can cause high blood pressure, rapid heart rate, nervousness, irritability, inability to sleep, anxiety, and may eventually lead to ulcers. Most health organizations recommend a moderate caffeine intake of less than 300 mg per day, or about the equivalent of 24 ounces of energy drinks.
 
Sugar
Most energy drinks contain some form of sugar. Liquid sugar is the nutrient that gets into the bloodstream the quickest, offering instant energy. If you ever feel hypoglycemic (low blood sugar) you know to drink juice or regular soda to get your sugar up fast. But what goes up must come down, and when blood sugar rises quickly, it also falls quickly. Energy drinks can give people a temporary buzz, but the effect is fleeting, says Dawn Jackson Blatner, R.D., a spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association. But once the initial jolt wears off, people often feel more lethargic than before the drink.
 
Some energy drink brands now offer sugar-free varieties. These do not contain sugar or calories, but do contain artificial sweeteners.
 
B Vitamins
In order to process energy in the body, certain B vitamins are necessary. Energy drinks add B vitamins such as niacin, pantothenic acid, pyridoxine, B-12, and folic acid. While these vitamins are important for metabolism, increased amounts will not produce additional energy. If someone is deficient, the additional vitamins may help, but most people are not deficient, since these nutrients are abundant in our food supply and available in all multivitamins.
 
Taurine
Taurine is a non-essential amino acid thought to improve reaction time and concentration. In most people, taurine is abundant in the body. Taurine is also found in meats and seafood.
 
Ginseng
Ginseng is an herbal supplement used to provide energy. Studies do not support the use of ginseng, and long-term side effects are unknown. Short-term side effects include inability to sleep, headaches, and increased blood pressure.
 
D-Ribose
Present in every cell in the body, D-Ribose is naturally occurring sugar needed to produce ATP, or energy in the body. Research is scant as to whether additional ribose in a supplement or beverage will produce additional feelings of energy.
 
L-Carnitine
L-Carnitine is used by the body to break down fat to use for energy. Carnitine deficiencies are rare, and research has not revealed whether more is better.
 
Potential risks
Energy drinks are often heavily promoted to people involved in sports. However, they are not recommended to rehydrate after exercise, due to the fairly high caffeine content.
 
Since concentration is such an important aspect of golf, a small amount of caffeine may enhance this ability during play. But, according to Dawn Jackson Blatner, author of The Flexitarian Diet, Too much caffeine can negatively affect performance by making it difficult to focus, and increased nervousness and jitters.
 
If you have any medical conditions related to high blood pressure or heart disease, you definitely should exercise caution before using any products that contain large amounts of caffeine or other stimulants.
 
Caffeine has a half-life of six hours, meaning that only half the amount of caffeine you drink is depleted after six hours. Since it can linger in your system for up to 12 hours after ingested, dont have caffeine after noon, or it could affect your quality of sleep.
 
Energy drinks often contain ingredients that are not well studied in humans. For that reason, use caution with energy drink consumption. If you want to drink one, start out with a small amount to see how your body reacts. Everybody responds differently to food additives. The stimulant nature of many of the ingredients in energy drinks, especially when combined with alcohol, could have serious consequences.
 
How the body gets energy
Our body gets real physical energy from calories. The definition of a calorie is energy. But since most of us do not have a deficit of calories, why are we often still so tired? Our bodies can only use a certain amount of energy at a given time. When we give our body too much energy it stores it as fat. That excess fat causes us to feel lethargic and not burn as much energy because we are too tired and heavy to move around. When we skip meals or go too long between meals without a snack, our body is low on energy and it is forced to take primarily from our muscle.
 
Bottom line
Energy drinks may be harmless in small quantities for most healthy people. However, if you rely on energy drinks to boost your energy, it is much better to discover why you are feeling low on energy in the first place. Energy drinks are expensive and just dont live up to the claims they make.
 
Maintain energy levels naturally

1.Get 7-9 hours of uninterrupted sleep nightly.
2.Stay well hydrated with 70-100 ounces of fluid daily.
3.Exercise your heart regularly through 30-90 minutes of moderate to intense aerobic exercise daily.
4.Eat light and eat often. Do not go more than 3-4 hours between meals without having a snack to bridge your glucose in between.
5.Eat complex carbohydrates for your bodys preferred source of energy. Foods like bread, rice, pasta, cereal, and tortillas are good choices, especially the whole grain variety.
6.Manage the stress in your life.
7.Guard your time so you do not over-schedule yourself. Allow time for relaxation and rest.
8.If you are smoker, quit smoking. Smoking depletes the oxygen in your blood, leaving you fatigued.

 
EDITORS NOTE: Golf Fitness Magazine is the only national consumer publication dedicated to golf-specific fitness, mental focus, and improving ability, performance and health among all golfers. Our priority is to maximize your potential, lower your scores, reduce your risk of injury, and extend your golfing years. Each issue has departments dedicated to men, women, seniors, and juniors along with tips, advice and simple exercise routines from GFMs team of experts. If you want to improve your golf game, and hit the ball farther, click here for special offers on a subscription so you can have all this and more in-depth advice delivered right to you! Get cutting edge fitness & mental tips sent to your inbox each month with our FREE golf performance eNewsletter, Shape Your Game. To contact our Senior Editor, Publisher or Online Editor with questions or comments, please visit our web site golffitnessmagazine.com for more information.
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Kelly, Sauers co-lead in Hawaii; Monty, Couples in mix

By Associated PressJanuary 19, 2018, 3:52 am

KAILUA-KONA, Hawaii - Fresh off a solid performance on Oahu, Jerry Kelly shot an 8-under 64 on the Big Island on Thursday to share the first-round lead at the Mitsubishi Electric Championship, the season opener on the PGA Tour Champions.

The 51-year-old Kelly, who tied for 14th at the PGA Tour's Sony Open last week in Honolulu, birdied five of his final seven holes to shoot 30 on the back nine at Hualalai. He won twice last season, his first on the over-50 tour.

Gene Sauers also shot 64, going bogey-free amid calm conditions. Thirty-two of the 44 players broke par in the limited-field event, which includes winners from last season, past champions of the event, major champions and Hall of Famers.

Rocco Mediate and Colin Montgomerie were one shot back, and Fred Couples, Kevin Sutherland and Kirk Triplett were another shot behind.

Bernhard Langer, defending the first of his seven 2017 titles, was in the middle of the pack after a 69.

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Rahm (62) fires career low round

By Will GrayJanuary 19, 2018, 12:03 am

The scores were predictably low during the opening round of the CareerBuilder Challenge, where the top-ranked player in the field currently sits atop the standings. Here's how things look after the first day in Palm Springs as Jon Rahm is out to an early advantage:

Leaderboard: Jon Rahm (-10), Austin Cook (-9), Andrew Landry (-9), Jason Kokrak (-9), Brandon Harkins (-8), Martin Piller (-8), Aaron Wise (-8), Beau Hossler (-8)

What it means: Rahm is coming off a runner-up finish two weeks ago at Kapalua, and he picked up right where he left off with a 10-under 62 at La Quinta Country Club. It marked his lowest career round on the PGA Tour, and it gave him a one-shot lead heading to the Nicklaus Tournament Course. Cook is the only player within two shots of Rahm who has won already on Tour.

Round of the day: Rahm got off to a fast start, playing his first seven holes in 6 under, and he made it around La Quinta without dropping a shot. The 62 bettered his previous career low on Tour by two shots and it included an eagle on the par-5 fifth hole to go along with eight birdies.

Best of the rest: Cook was a winner earlier this season at the RSM Classic, and he's now in the mix for trophy No. 2 following a 9-under 63 on the Nicklaus Tournament Course. Like Rahm, he opened with a seven-hole stretch at 6 under and turned in a scorecard without a bogey. He'll now head to the more difficult Stadium Course for his second round.

Biggest disappointment: Patrick Reed blitzed the three-course rotation in Palm Springs en route to his first career Tour title back in 2014, but he's unlikely to repeat that feat after opening with a 2-over 74 on the Nicklaus Tournament course. Reed made only one birdie against three bogeys and was one of only 32 players in the 156-man field who failed to break par in the opening round.

Main storyline heading into Friday: Rahm deserves the spotlight, as he entered the week as one of the event's headliners and did nothing to lose that billing in the opening round. But the pack of contenders is sure to keep pace, while players like Phil Mickelson (-2) will look to put up a low score in order to build some momentum heading into the weekend.

Shot of the day: Wesley Bryan's 7-under 65 on the Nicklaus Tournament course was helped in large part by an eagle on the par-4 10th, where he holed a 54-degree wedge from 112 yards away. Bryan went on to birdie the next hole amid a five-hole stretch of 5 under play.

Quote of the day: "Shot 10 under par. There's not much more I can ask for." - Rahm

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Recent winner Cook contending at CareerBuilder

By Will GrayJanuary 18, 2018, 11:45 pm

Patton Kizzire is currently the only two-time PGA Tour winner this season, but Austin Cook hopes to join him this week at the CareerBuilder Challenge.

Cook won for the first time in November at the RSM Classic, a victory that catapaulted him from the Web.com Tour graduate category into an entirely new echelon. Cook notched a pair of top-25 finishes over the last two weeks in Hawaii, and he's again in the mix after an opening 63 on the Nicklaus Tournament Course left him one shot behind Jon Rahm.

"Today was great," Cook told reporters. "The conditions were perfect, but I always loved desert golf and I was just hitting the ball well and seeing good lines on the greens and hitting good putts."

Cook got off to a fast start, playing his first seven holes in 6 under highlighted by an eagle on the par-5 fourth hole. He briefly entertained the notion of a sub-60 round after birdies on Nos. 10 and 11 before closing with six pars and a birdie.


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Cook was a relative unknown before his victory at Sea Island earlier this season, but now with the flexibility and confidence afforded by a win he hopes to build on his burgeoning momentum this week in California.

"That was a big, proud moment for myself, knowing that I can finish a tournament," Cook said. "I think it was one of those things that I've proven to myself that now I can do it, and it just meant the world to me."

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Photo: Fleetwood's phone cover is picture of Bjorn

By Jason CrookJanuary 18, 2018, 11:40 pm

There's phone covers and then there are Phone Covers.

Paul Casey has himself a Phone Cover, showing off the protective case that features a picture of his wife at last year's U.S. Open.

Now, it appears, Tommy Fleetwood has joined the movement.

Fleetwood, last year's season-long Race to Dubai winner, has a phone cover with a picture of Ryder Cup captain Thomas Bjorn on it. And not even a current Thomas Bjorn. This is a young Bjorn. A hair-having Bjorn.

@tommyfleetwood_1

A post shared by Alex Noren (@alexnoren1) on

The 26-year-old is a virtual lock for this year's European Ryder Cup team, but just in case, he's carrying around a phone with a picture of the team captain attached to the back of it.

It's a bold strategy, Cotton. Let's see if it pays off for him.