Energy drinks are great until the buzz wears off and you’re in the throes of more guarana than you can handle with your grappa. Mixing liquor and energy drinks may give an extra boost to your party, but there are also plenty of cautionary tales about the dangers of this trendy mix. Not only are you risking an energy drink DUI; you could be on a fast road to an addiction, too.
Your afternoon pick-me-up, road trip companion or favorite fatigue-fighting energy drink has evolved from plain old coffee into a variety of chemical and natural drinks promising hours of additional energy. Probably around 30 seconds after the first energy drink hit the shelves, someone added a few shots of liquor just to see what would happen. The result was the false security of feeling a lot less intoxicated than a person’s blood alcohol concentration (BAC) would predict; the energy boost masked the effects of the alcohol.
Unfortunately, that effect does not necessarily make the person stop drinking their normal amount of alcohol. Instead, they are more likely to drink more of the deceptive combination, leading to energy drink DUI problems, a possible ignition interlock requirement, and a dependence on alcohol. Since the more a person drinks, the higher their tolerance can become, adding in energy drinks just encourages more alcohol consumption. Alcoholism or alcohol dependence is a natural result of those buzzy beverages.
The immediate problem of an energy drink DUI is obvious, but it is also the long term we must consider when getting our buzz on at a bar. As with any type of alcohol and any mixer used, be responsible and understand the risks that you take, even if you feel an extra pep in your step. Down the road, you will be grateful for taking things easy with the energy drinks.