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What's the Buzz About Energy Drinks?

There are healthier ways to get an energy boost, experts say.

Need a Boost? continued...

Other energizing beverages include sports drinks, fruit juices, water, low-fat milk, and good, old- fashioned water. "Drink more water," suggests Farrell. "Being dehydrated can lead to fatigue."

Also make sure you're getting enough carbohydrates. Fresh and dried fruit, vegetables, cereal, low-fat yogurt, and whole-grain breads are just a few of the many nourishing foods that can give you energy.

Eat meals every few hours, don't skip meals, and take a good look at your eating and sleeping habits, suggests Farrell.

If you're feeling run down, Sass suggests taking a look at the reasons why you are so tired instead of trying to fix it with energy drinks.

"Try to get more sleep or increase your physical activity -- both will help sagging energy levels," she says.

The bottom line is that while energy drinks are not necessarily harmful, many just don't live up to most of the claims they make. Think of them as drinks that are highly concentrated in sugar and caffeine, and drink them with caution.

"We don't need energy drinks," says Sass. "Don't take trendy energy drinks at face value. Question the marketing of these products, and find alternatives that contain ingredients that are known to be healthful."

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Reviewed on October 20, 2006

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