I recieved an article this morning suggesting that Red Bull the energy drink, is a slow death and should not be consumed. The email was a “pass on to friends.” While I believe that Redbull is not the healthiest drink to drink, I don’t think it will cost you your life unless it is combined with something that may cause a reaction in your body.
Anyway, I did a some research and found that most of the information was from about 2003 to 2009. In one case it said that France had lifted the ban. So I went to Snopes where I usually get information as to whether an article is true or not. This is what they had to say.
Origins: This warning about the popular energy drink Red Bull began circulating on the Internet in March 2000. There are two claims to address here: that Glucuronolactone is the evil substance it is portrayed to be in the e-mail, and that it is one of Red Bull’s ingredients.
Glucuronolactone is a naturally-occurring metabolite, a carbohydrate produced by the human metabolic system.
It most certainly is not “an artificially manufactured stimulant developed in the early 60’s by the American Government,” as is claimed in the e-mailed exhortation to foreswear the drink.
Yet a can of Red Bull contains 600 mg of the substance per can, which has been suggested is 250 times a person’s normal daily intake.
No proof has yet emerged that this would pose a danger of any sort, but it is a large enough number in and of itself to evoke concern.
Searches of The British Medical Journal fail to turn up the article described in the warning, belying the e-mail’s claim that a piece on this lurking horror recently appeared there.
Searches of the Food and Drug Administration’s web site also fail to turn up anything about glucuronolactone, a situation unheard of even in the case of drugs or substances that are merely the subjects of questions raised by consumers, let alone ones that are “banned for commercial consumption in America.” Were glucuronolactone the raging threat to mankind portrayed in the e-mail, the FDA database would be full to overflowing with articles about it.
The glucuronolactone rumor is not the only one circulated about Red Bull. Other whispers state that the drink is formulated from bull testicles, or that it’s been proved to be wildly addictive, or that its drinkers will test positive in drug tests after downing just half a can, or that it shivers on the verge of being banned throughout Europe. With one partial exception, all of these rumors are untrue.
To read the article in full