First Person: How the FDA Saved Me Money on Energy Drinks

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I have been drinking Red Bull as long as I can remember. Before that I was a big advocate for Sobe's Adrenaline Rush drinks and I've also purchased quite a few Monsters and even one of those Five Hour Energy Shots. Eight years ago, I bought energy drinks whenever I happened to be in a gas station because they were there and an easy way to perk myself up. Over the years, that changed. Now I buy anywhere from four to six per week - every week.

Recently, CNNMoney published a story about a United States Food and Drug Administration study. The FDA is looking into different energy drinks to see if they are safe. According to CNNMoney, energy drinks made up a $9 billion dollar industry in 2011 and made up 12 percent of all the carbonated drink sales in the United States, but if they're not safe, that may change.

Currently, the FDA is looking into the brand, Five Hour Energy, to see if the company's highly caffenited shot is responsible for 13 deaths over the past four years. So far the FDA has found that five of 16 different tested products have 20 percent more caffeine per serving than they claim, according to CNNMoney.

Personally, I'm not willing to risk my health to further along a $9 billion a year industry, especially if I have been mislead. Like many people, I trust the nutritional guide label listed on our foods, especially something that could potentially cause problems with my heart, nervous system, or a whole other host of medical issues.

In fact, finding out that those labels were wrong and something I've drank for years is actually worse for me than I thought was all I needed to stop buying the stuff. Before the FDA investigation started, I bought about six energy drinks per week. Each can costs $2.00 a piece and I spent roughly $12 a week. So far this month I have spent $48 on energy drinks alone.

But that is changing. Now that I know about the potential health risks, I've decided to just eliminate this expense from my list. Even if the FDA does eventually decide that energy drinks pose no real health risk to consumers, I am better off saving the money. After all, if I don't buy another energy drink for the rest of the year, I'll save about $528 in eleven months.

*Note: This was written by a Yahoo! contributor. Do you have a personal finance story that you'd like to share? Sign up with the Yahoo! Contributor Network to start publishing your own finance articles.

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