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Insomnia Concerns Rise as Research Points to Energy Drink Consumption Among Students

A Norwegian study, featured in the open-access journal BMJ Open, has uncovered a concerning association between energy drink consumption and sleep issues among college students. The research reveals that those who consume energy drinks experience both insomnia and poor sleep quality.

Furthermore, a direct correlation was found between the frequency of energy drink intake and decreased nightly sleep duration. Even a moderate consumption rate of one to three times per month was linked to an elevated risk of sleep disturbances.

The study highlights the variable composition of energy drinks, containing sugar, vitamins, minerals, amino acids, and an average caffeine concentration of 150 mg per litre. Widely embraced as physical and mental rejuvenators, these beverages are particularly popular among youths and college students, emphasizing the need for awareness regarding potential sleep-related consequences.

Participants underwent detailed inquiries about their sleep patterns, encompassing bedtime, wake-up time, sleep latency, and wakefulness after sleep. Sleep efficiency was calculated based on total nightly hours versus time spent in bed.

Insomnia criteria included difficulties falling and staying asleep, early waking at least three nights weekly, along with daytime sleepiness and tiredness lasting three days per week for three months. A discernible dose-response connection between energy drink consumption and reduced sleep duration was evident for both genders.

Daily energy drink consumption correlated with approximately 30 minutes less sleep compared to occasional or non-consumers. Similar associations were observed for prolonged wakefulness and delayed sleep onset.

Increased consumption corresponded to heightened nocturnal wake time and prolonged sleep onset, indicating poorer sleep efficiency. Insomnia prevalence was higher among daily consumers—51% vs. 33% (women) and 37% vs. 22% (men)—compared to occasional or non-consumers.

Higher energy drink consumption links to increased sleep problems, especially shorter sleep duration. Men with daily consumption are twice as likely to sleep less than 6 hours, and women are 87% more likely.

Even those with 1-3 monthly drinks face elevated sleep issues. This observational study doesn't establish causation, recognizing the potential for reverse causality. Limited data on consumption details and reliance on self-assessment prompt caution.

Researchers suggest targeting energy drink frequency as a potential intervention for sleep problems among students, emphasizing the need to identify modifiable risk factors in this population.

Sources- The Economic Times



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