Journal of Public Health Policy

, Volume 34, Issue 2, pp 254–271 | Cite as

Energy drinks: An emerging public health hazard for youth

  • Jennifer L Pomeranz
  • Christina R Munsell
  • Jennifer L Harris
Original Article


Energy drinks are emerging as a public health threat and are increasingly consumed by youth internationally. Energy drinks contain high levels of caffeine, sugar, and novel ingredients, and are often marketed through youth-oriented media and venues. We review these practices and the current inconsistent state of labeling. We also examine international support for regulation of these products, including a survey showing that 85 per cent of United States parents agreed that regulations requiring caffeine content disclosure and warning labels on energy drinks are warranted. We then examine the regulatory structure for energy drinks in the United States, analyzing legal and self-regulatory strategies to protect consumers, especially youth, from these potentially dangerous products. Recommended government interventions include revised labeling requirements, addressing problematic ingredients, and enacting retail restrictions. We conclude by identifying areas for future research.


child and adolescent health energy drinks marketing regulation law 

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Copyright information

© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Ltd 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jennifer L Pomeranz
    • 1
  • Christina R Munsell
    • 1
  • Jennifer L Harris
    • 1
  1. 1.Rudd Center for Food Policy & Obesity, Yale UniversityNew HavenUSA

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