Lifted View

5-Hour Energy: Awake All Day

By Dr. Neil 

Yesterday I did something unthinkable. I was driving home at 6 am after a fairly grueling overnight shift and started dozing off.  I went to the nearest gas station, filled up and purchased something I’d never tried before – 5-hour energy. 

7 am-8 am:I had one gulp and felt awake instantly.   I definitely made it home.  As a matter of fact I drove faster than I’d ever driven before.Got home, wide awake and starving.  Had a glass of milk, and some cold turkey, and tried to sleep.  

9 am –11 am:I needed to sleep.  I had to be back at work at 8 pm and staying awake was absolutely unacceptable. I lay down – committed to dreaming.   

11 am – 1 pm: No sleep at all.  I must have turned a thousand times, tried four different pillows, covered my legs, then my arms,and then one arm.  Still couldn't sleep. Eventually I gave up, and had lunch – it was lunchtime after all. 

Came down made an omelet, and figured I’d try to get some work down before sleeping. 

1 pm – 3 pm: I’m trying to work.  I had to put together a PowerPoint, but kept on feeling restless.  Walk around.  Had an apple, then a pear.  Tried to get back to work, but kept on feeling restless and jittery.  I slogged on.    

3 pm 5 pm: I’m starting to feel like a resident.  Drained, both physically and mentally.   Still jittery, I had a glass of milk, had some chicken, and lay back down.  

5 pm – 7 pm:  I finally slept, but instead of having a nice restful 2 hours of sleep, I had some bizarre dreams where I was a patient in my own hospital.   Eventually I woke up and got ready to head to work.   

So what happened?  In hindsight, the 5-hour energy certainly kept me awake, but I’m not sure if the anxiety and increased appetite was worth it.  But looking at the ingredients,I suspect that having 2000% of my daily intake of vitamin B6 and having 8333% of B12 my have contributed.  Perhaps it was the combination of 200 mg of caffeine and taurine that led me to eat more than I had in the two days prior. 

The caffeine, taurine and B-vitamins will certainly make you feel awake.  However, they are also highly likely to lead to increased appetite, rebound fatigue/crash, and in my case increased anxiety and palpitations.   

Mega-dosing on herbals can potentially have devastating effects.  Take Lamar Odom, his current situation is a tragedy that results from mega-dosing and mixing stimulants. Mixing multiple stimulating herbal ingredients without having a clear understanding of their interactions can potentially be life threatening.   

The ingredients in Lifted View were meant to gradually make people feel more awake, and were selected to improve ones ability to focus.  It’s not designed to make your heart beat 200 times a minute, nor is it intended to make you stay awake for days on end.  I know which one I’m picking.