Monster is an energy drink created by the Monster Beverage Company in Corona California. The product was first released to the public in 2002. Monster along with their rival energy drink, Red Bull created a monstrous scene resulting from rumors that the drinks were made from bull testicles.
Taurine is one of the main ingredients in energy drinks. Taurine was the suspected ingredient that got Monster and Red Bull tied up in speculations to begin with.
Taurine is a type of amino acid that gets its name from the Latin term Taurus which means Bull because it was first located in and extracted from the bile and semen of a red bull. It is also found in the human body.
The taurine found in energy drinks is not however a byproduct of bull’s testicles, it is a synthetically made substance that is considered to be vegetarian friendly.
The concern that has risen from the use of taurine was not in correlation with its bull sperm but with the effects high levels of the element found in energy drinks and the way it directly reacts with caffeine.
There are 2000 milligrams of taurine in one 16 ounce can of Monster. The human body naturally consumes 100 milligrams through regular nutrition. As you can see that is quite a difference. Taurine is not known to have any life threatening side effects so a recommendation for maximum intake has never been able to be established.
Although, not considered life threatening, there are some very unpleasant side effects to digesting high levels of taurine from energy drinks like Red Bull, Monster, Amp, Rockstar and Lost. Some of the side effects include bizarre behavior, the shakes, anxiety, rage and sensitivity to noise.
The beverage company that created the Monster energy drink, Hansen Natural, chose the name after polling teenage boys. Their plan was to market the energy boosting product to edgy, young teens and young adults. The plan worked, the company’s market value is now more than $2.8 billion dollars in a $5.7 billion dollar industry.
Teens make up the majority of buyers of popular energy drinks like Monster and Red Bull. Part of the appeal is the syrupy sweetness of its flavor and more so for the buzz. Kids are purchasing these drinks specifically to get that jittery, strung out, wired feeling. The trend amongst teens is chug 3, 24 ounce cans one after another.
A high number of teenage energy drink consumers are reporting tingling in their hands, numbness in their limbs and a rapid beating heart
Some convenient stores around the country have begun pulling the well known Monster drink from their shelves because parents were making complaints about the easy access to such addicting products. Their claim is that Monster is addictive as cigarettes and kids aren’t allowed to purchase those.
Determined to get in on the action a few new energy drink companies have arrived on the scene with the intent to capitalize on taboo names. One such company created the drink called Cocaine which sells in nightclubs and corner stores in 6 states. Cocaine’s slogan, “The Legal Alternative” came about because they knew they needed to clarify the absence of illegal drugs in their product and its classification as an energy drink.
One comment left on the Cocaine MySpace page states, “Cocaine looks so freaking tight. I NEED THIS STUFF. Next weekend, me and 3 friends are going to take a 6 hour roadtrip to NYC just to get our hands on this stuff.”