Research indicates that energy drinks like Red Bull are particularly dangerous for those who have heart conditions, diabetes, or seizure disorders, and certain medications can make energy drinks hazardous to your health at any age. Even though energy drinks are potentially dangerous, Red Bull continues to market them as a health supplement and encourages regular consumption. If you or a loved one has seen negative side effects after drinking Red Bull, you need to talk to a Red Bull energy drink lawsuit lawyer.
Have lawsuits against Red Bull been successful?
Red Bull has gone through several lawsuits, and evidence has already been presented backing the risks associated with energy drinks. That hurts Red Bull’s ability to win in court. Most Red Bull lawsuits end in settlement, but not always.
- Heart Attack — Terry v. Red Bull (2013): In this case, a 33-year old man drank a Red Bull in between basketball games. He suffered a heart attack and died during the second game. His family settled a lawsuit with Red Bull for an undisclosed amount.
- False Advertising — Careathers v. Red Bull (2014): Careathers sued Red Bull because he drank the beverage for 10 years and experienced no boost in his mental or physical performance. His lawsuit was based on false advertisement—although Red Bull touted that it “Gives you Wings,” there are no health benefits to consuming this beverage, and it may even be harmful.
- Wrongful Death — Wade v. Red Bull (2016): Jacob Wade suffered an aortic dissection after drinking Red Bull. The reaction was fatal. His mother filed a wrongful death suit in 2016. That case is still pending.
Cases against Red Bull have many of the same claims involved in other energy drink lawsuits, including the over-exposure to caffeine and other substances in the drink.
In May 2015, a federal New York judge granted a $13 million settlement against Red bull which resolved two class-action lawsuits alleging false advertising. In the lawsuits, the claimants alleged that Red Bull falsely advertised their energy drinks as being “superior to coffee.” However, in actuality, one 8-ounce can of Red Bull contains only about half the caffeine of a 7-ounce cup of coffee.
What are the side effects of drinking Red Bull?
Red Bull is especially dangerous for children and teens. But, many of the same negative side effects can apply to adults as well. These include:
- High blood pressure
- Heart palpitations
- Cardiac arrest
- Heart attack
- Kidney failure
- Multiple seizures
- Chest pain
Poison control centers had almost 5,000 cases of people getting sick from energy drinks like Red Bull from 2010 to 2013. Most of those cases involved children who did not understand what they were drinking.
Red Bull and hepatitis
Red Bull contains B-vitamins, including niacin, otherwise known as Vitamin B3. In higher doses, niacin can accumulate in the liver and cause severe inflammation. People who have consumed excessive amounts of niacin in energy drinks like Red Bull have developed conditions like toxic hepatitis or acute non-viral hepatitis. For these purposes, “excessive” consumption refers to at least 150 mg. per day for several weeks.
Energy drinks can be more harmful to your health than caffeine
A study from 2016 indicated that drinking energy drinks is worse for your health than consuming caffeine alone. While experts are unsure why there is a difference, it appears that the combination of ingredients is what actually causes problems. In the study, an ECG change called QTc prolongation, which is sometimes seen in life-threatening heartbeat irregularities, was more common after drinking an energy drink instead of a caffeine beverage like coffee.
Blood pressure also increased nearly 5 points and stayed high for almost six hours after drinking the energy drink. The caffeine beverage increased blood pressure by just one point. While the study was too small to make solid conclusions, the initial results are concerning.
A Mayo Clinic study from 2015 found that even having just one energy drink can be hazardous to young adults. It increases blood pressure and stress hormones. It also increases the potential for heart damage—after only one can.
What are the dangerous ingredients in Red Bull?
Red Bull has several active ingredients that are designed to give you an energy boost. These include:
- Sugar (Glucose/Sucrose). Red Bull has a whopping 27 grams of sugar in each can. Sugar has its own adverse side effects when it is consumed in large quantities. But, even the sugar-free Red Bull includes ingredients like aspartame, sucralose, and acesulfame—all of these may increase the risk of heart disease.
- Caffeine. A normal 8.3 ounce can of Red Bull includes 80 mg of caffeine. This is about the same amount as a cup of coffee. Overconsumption of caffeine has adverse side effects, but the caffeine alone is not really what makes Red Bull so dangerous.
- Taurine (2-aminoethanesulfonic acid). This substance is naturally occurring in the body. You can find it in the lower intestine. It helps create nerve impulses and move minerals through your digestive system. High doses of taurine can be toxic, but doses must be very high for taurine to be dangerous by itself.
- Glucuronolactone. This substance is supposed to improve memory and concentration. It also has mild antidepressant properties.
- Inositol. This ingredient will boost your mood by helping your brain use serotonin. It is naturally occurring in nuts, beans, cantaloupes, and oranges.
- D-Pantothenol. D-Pantothenol will increase mood and boost metabolism.
- Vitamin B6 (Pyridoxine HCL). This substance will improve mood and increase energy. It also helps the body create red blood cells and use oxygen more effectively.
With all of these ingredients that have been shown to have significant benefits to the body, it seems odd that Red Bull could have such harmful side effects. However, studies have repeatedly shown that there is something about the combination of these ingredients, and others, that can harm your body.
Talk to a Red Bull lawsuit lawyer for free
If you or a loved one suffered a sudden health problem like a heart attack or stroke, think about your energy drink consumption just before the incident occurred. You might have a legal case that can help you deal with medical bills, lost wages, and other losses.