The Student News Site of Dr. Michael M. Krop

The Lightning Strike

The Student News Site of Dr. Michael M. Krop

The Lightning Strike

The Student News Site of Dr. Michael M. Krop

The Lightning Strike

The unseen effects of pre-workout; healthy or harmful

Dorielle Florvil
INCREASED ENERGY: A scoop of preworkout powder used as fuel before exercise

If you’re an athlete or just enjoy working out, it’s likely that you’ve been exposed to performance-enhancing supplements. Recently, pre-workout supplements have gained attention for their ability to boost athletic performance, but despite the benefits, pre-workout also comes with potential risks worth considering.

Pre-workout supplements are designed to supply you with an extra boost of energy to enhance your athletic performance. The supplements come in many shapes and sizes and can be purchased as a powder or as a bottled liquid, which both essentially consist of the same content. 

According to nutritional magazine EatingWell, pre-workouts typically contain a mixture of amino acids, caffeine, creatine, sweeteners and or other supplemental ingredients such as beta-alanine. 

“I usually use pre-workout right before going to the gym especially if I’m tired or down,” varsity baseball catcher Junior Lane Paris said. “It helps me get a boost of energy when I’m in the gym or getting ready for practice. It makes me feel faster and I am able to do a lot more than when I am tired. Pre-workout can help in many ways, but it’s important to be mindful of what you take.”

It has been documented by the National Library of Medicine that when teens consume excessive caffeine they may experience negative effects. You may experience symptoms such as nervousness, irritability, nausea, sleep impairment, osteoporosis and numerous other possible reactions.

It is highly recommended by the Cleveland Clinic that you carefully follow instructions when taking a dose of pre-workout. They also state, pre-workout is normally safe to take on a daily basis, as the effects usually wear off around one to two hours after the initial consumption, but this may vary based on dosage and personal metabolism rates. 

“Pre-workout supplements often contain several ingredients, some of which can be harmful in high doses,” Certified holistic nutritionist Adam Meyer said in an article published by Eatingwell magazine. “For example, excessive caffeine intake can cause restlessness, increased heart rate, and even cardiac arrest.” 

Additionally, in a study published in the National Library of Medicine, a common element in pre-workout, beta-alanine, can cause an itchy or tingly sensation on the skin and can lead to neurotoxicity, damaging neurons. 

Integrating pre-workout along with a balanced diet may be beneficial, but since most pre-workouts contain high levels of caffeine, it could help to cut out other caffeinated beverages, like coffee or tea, to prevent negative effects. Staying hydrated throughout your day is vital, as some pre-workouts contain creatine and may cause dehydration.

Although it’s not completely risk-free, if taken properly, most pre-workout products should be safe to take. It is important to regulate and monitor yourself when it comes to adding supplements to your daily routine. Pre-workout effects can vary from person to person, so it’s important to be mindful and monitor what you put into your body when adding supplements to your daily routine.

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