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AMA Will Support a Ban on Marketing Energy Drinks to Young Children

Update Date: Jun 19, 2013 11:06 AM EDT

The American Medical Association (AMA) that just defined obesity as a disease has also announced this past Tuesday that it will support a ban on marketing energy drinks to children under 18-years-old. Currently, the effects of energy drinks on young children are still unclear. Several studies have found that these high-caffeine drinks could cause underlying health issues. Due to recent statistics revealing that more teenagers and young children are drinking these caffeine-packed drinks, health advocates and medical professionals have been more concern about the possible repercussions of these drinks.

"Energy drinks contain massive and excessive amounts of caffeine that may lead to a host of health problems in young people, including heart problems, and banning companies from marketing these product to adolescents is a common sense action that we can take to protect the health of American kids," said AMA board member, Alexander Ding in a statement, according to Reuters.

Although some people might believe that it is common sense to stop marketing these products to children and teenagers, other agencies, such as the American Beverage Association, disagree. According to the association, the energy drinks available today have around half the caffeine count of a comparable size cup of coffeehouse coffee. The association has expressed its disappointment with the AMA for choosing to support a ban that would prevent energy drink manufacturers from advertising their products to children and teenagers.

"Leading energy drink companies also voluntarily display total caffeine amounts - from all sources - on their packages, as well as an advisory statement indicating that the product is not intended [or recommended] for children, pregnant or nursing women, or persons sensitive to caffeine," the spokeswoman for the association, Maureen Beach said in an emailed statement.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) said last October that it planned on investigating five deaths that could be tied to the energy drink, Monster made by Monster Beverage Corporation. Despite the labels present on energy drinks, children and young adults continue to abuse these drinks, suggesting that more needs to be done to protect the health of America's youth. 

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