Apr 20th, 1:00 PM - 4:00 PM


Energy Drink Consumption by Boise State University Students: An Exploratory Study to Determine Reasons and Patterns of Intake

Faculty Sponsor

Dr. Elaine Long


Energy drinks are defined as beverages which typically contain caffeine, taurine and vitamin(s) and may contain an energy source (e.g. carbohydrate) and/or other substance(s), marketed for the specific purpose of providing real or perceived enhanced physiological and/or performance effects (Finnegan). The consumption of these drinks to stimulate and arouse the mind is increasing among individuals in the 18-25 year age group. More than 200 new energy drinks were introduced between July 2006 and August 2007, with many of them endorsed or formulated specifically for certain populations, including athletes. Hooters and NASCAR are two examples of the partnerships that have been created to boost energy drink sales (Zegler 2007). Published studies have reported that a significant number of college students consume energy drinks. Some of the more common reasons for consuming energy drinks in this age group include: to stay awake when studying, working or driving; to mix with alcohol; as a refreshing beverage; and for athletic performance (Malinauskas et al 2007 & Fierra 2006). This study was undertaken to compare reasons for intake of energy drinks by Boise State University students to published studies. In addition, this study explored the relationships between intake of energy drinks, gender, age, credit load taken, and activities, such as exercise, work, studying or consumption of alcohol to determine if there were significant consumption patterns.

This study was approved by the Boise State Human Subjects Research and Institutional Review Board #193-09-023.