An Ingredient in These Popular Drinks Is Giving People Severe Hepatitis

We’ve heard time and time again about the potentially damaging effects of loading up on too many energy drinks. Not only are they loaded with sugar (they can also make you feel jittery and lead to stomach issues), but half of the ingredients on the back of the cans are also impossible to pronounce and who knows what’s really in them. But one Florida man may have taken it too far and past the point of no return.

The 50-year-old construction worker was drinking up to five energy drinks per day, which eventually led to a severely damaged liver. And, once your liver becomes extremely damaged, you run the risk of your skin turning yellow, which is exactly what happened to the man. Sources say he was downing, on average, four to five drinks every day for three weeks straight before being diagnosed with an inflamed liver, also known as acute hepatitis.

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The hepatitis, which doctors believe was directly linked to this above-average consumption of energy drinks, led to jaundice, which caused his skin to turn yellow. Energy drinks are are notoriously known for being high in vitamin B3, aka niacin. The vitamin is found in plenty of vegetables and foods, as well as skin care products, but when it’s ingested in extremely high levels, it can be toxic to the liver. The constant overload of niacin to the liver is what led this man to become sick.

According to Medical Daily, this isn't just an isolated incident. In a case published in Journal of Medical Case Reports in 2001, a 22-year-old woman also developed acute hepatitis from drinking a large amount of energy drinks daily for two weeks. 

Lesson learned: If you need a boost of energy, you’re better of sticking with normal amounts of more natural sources of caffeine, like coffee and tea. At least those won’t turn your skin yellow.

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