Are Rockstar Energy Drinks Bad For You?

In the middle of a long car trip or a slow-moving workday, it can be tempting to reach for an energy drink to put a little pep back in our step. Of the many brands of energy drinks available, Rockstar is one that you can't walk into a local gas station or grocery store without seeing. However, recent data shows that from 2015-2020, Rockstar sales have progressively declined (via Statista). Does this mean that fewer people are buying Rockstar because it may be bad for our health?

According to energy drink blogger Jenny Jacobs of Energy Drink Hub, Rockstar works to appeal to all possible consumers by offering a variety of product lines, such as Pure Zero, sugar-free, and a wide range of fruity flavors. There are numerous ingredients within this energy drink, including sugar, caffeine, acid, and taurine, amongst many others. Of these ingredients, taurine is a naturally occurring amino acid that can be found in many types of meat, such as seafood or chicken (via Medical News Today). Although there is research that demonstrates the health benefits of taurine, additional research is still needed, as other scientific studies have suggested taurine has negative effects on the body — but what exactly are these side effects?

Rockstar has both mild and severe side effects

Personal injury law firm John Foy & Associates has taken on client cases against products, such as Rockstar, for a number of years. As a result, it has become well-versed in the negative ways in which Rockstar has impacted clients. Referencing a 2012 study, it states that side effects can range from mild to severe, including heart palpitations, trembling, and even stroke or heart attack. The firm went on to further demonstrate the severity of these outcomes by referencing a 2015 lawsuit in which a man required emergency surgery after a heart attack, which occurred 6-8 hours after consuming 4 Rockstar energy drinks (via NBC Los Angeles).

Research has been conducted on energy drinks for a number of years now, but many of the adverse findings remain similar to those found in older studies. For example, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration reported the side effects linked to consuming specific energy drinks back in 2012 (via WebMD). Rockstar Energy was associated with 13 illnesses and 2 long-term disabilities, including stroke and psychiatric hospitalization.

According to Energy Drink Hub, a standard 16-ounce can of Rockstar may contain upwards of 63 grams of sugar, depending on the variety — far exceeding the recommended daily limit recommended by the American Heart Association. For this reason, Rockstar is best consumed in moderation. Be sure to consult with a healthcare professional if you have any concerns regarding energy drinks and their potential effects on existing health conditions.