Celsius is an energy drink popular among athletes because the company positions Celsius drinks as fitness or performance beverages.
But, is Celsius good for performance? What are the Celsius energy drink side effects? Can you drink too much Celsius?
In this nutrition guide, we will discuss what the Celsius energy drink is, Celsius drink nutrition facts, Celsius caffeine content, side effects, and potential risks and benefits of drinking Celsius energy drinks.
We will cover:
- What Is Celsius Drink?
- Is Celsius Energy Drink Healthy?
- Is Celsius Bad For You?
- Celsius Drink FAQs:
Let’s get started!
What Is Celsius Drink?
Celsius energy drink is one of the most popular canned energy drinks available for purchase.
According to Investors.com, Celsius was the second-largest energy drink sold on Amazon.com in Q2 of 2023 with an 18.6% market share, trailing only Monster Energy Drinks, which held a 20.8% share of the Amazon energy drink market.
Celsius drinks are also both the top dollar and top unit growth brand at convenience stores in North America over the past year, now representing the number three energy drink brand at convenience stores in the United States.
Like other energy drinks, the Celsius drink is caffeinated.
However, what differentiates Celsius energy drinks from most commercial energy drinks is that the brand positions Celsius drinks as a “healthier energy drink alternative” to most commercial energy drinks.
The brand reports that the Celsius drink is a “functional energy drink“ that is “made with only the best ingredients,” thus appealing to consumers who want the caffeine jolt from a caffeinated energy drink without all of the sugar, potentially dangerous ingredients, artificial flavors, chemicals, and other fillers.So, is Celsius better than Red Bull or Monster energy drinks?
Are the ingredients in Celsius energy drinks healthier than Monster, Red Bull, Rockstar, or Prime energy drinks?
Although the manufacturers of the Celsius energy drink and Celsius Heat drink claim that their drinks are healthier than other commercial energy drinks on the market and contain only the “best ingredients” for “functional energy,” the company behind Celsius was actually sued over the claims surrounding the health benefits of Celsius ingredients.
The lawsuit was eventually settled in the early part of 2023.
Is Celsius Energy Drink Healthy?
It’s hard to argue that any energy drink is actually good for you, but are Celsius energy drinks healthier than most commercial energy drinks?
How do the Celsius drink ingredients stack up to other energy drinks, and are the Celsius energy drink ingredients safe and healthy overall?
When analyzing the ingredients in Celsius drinks, there are several components to the Celsius energy drink recipe or Celsius ingredients list to be mindful of:
- The proprietary blend of energy-boosting ingredients in Celsius drinks
- The vitamins and minerals in Celsius drinks
- The Celsius drink nutrition facts (Celsius calories, sugar, carbs, and other ingredients that contribute to the nutrition in Celsius energy drinks)
Let’s start with the energy ingredients in Celsius drinks.
Celsius energy drinks use a blend of several different “energy boosting ingredients“ designed to promote energy production and/or decrease fatigue.
The active ingredients in Celsius drinks for energy are listed in a proprietary blend called “MetaPlus Proprietary Blend.”
On a standard Celsius energy drink can, the energy dosage of the proprietary blend is 1.81 g per serving.
Unfortunately, the individual dosage or concentration of each of the constituent energy ingredients in the Celsius energy blend is unlisted.
This means that you only know the total amount provided in all six energy ingredients rather than how much of each ingredient is used in the Celsius formulation.
The Celsius energy ingredients in this MetaPlus Proprietary Blend and their functions are as follows:
Taurine is an amino acid often used in energy drinks.
One problem with energy drinks containing taurine is that if the energy drink is also caffeinated, there seems to be evidence suggesting that the combination of taurine and caffeine is dangerous, particularly for the brains of children and adolescents.
Guarana Seed Extract
Guarana seed extract is commonly used in energy drinks as studies have found that it acts as a stimulant, particularly when coupled with caffeine.
Guarana is an herbal extract that naturally contains around 40 mg of caffeine per gram.
Some research suggests that adding guarana seed extract to caffeinated energy drinks sort of magnifies or amplifies the stimulating effect of caffeine to make the energy drink that much more “energizing.“
Plus, energy drink manufacturers like Celsius are not required to include the caffeine content from the guarana on the product label.
In other words, Celsius product labels may say that each serving provides 200 mg of caffeine, but the number of milligrams of caffeine contained in the guarana does not have to be included in this 200 mg figure.
Therefore, the Celsius caffeine content is likely somewhat higher than stated on the label since Celsius drinks do have guarana.
Caffeine is a stimulant, so it can increase alertness and energy.
Although the specific dosages of all of the ingredients in the energy blend used in Celsius drinks are not clearly enumerated, the amount of caffeine in Celsius drinks is clearly labeled, as mandated by the FDA.
The standard Celsius caffeine content is 200 mg per serving, which is equivalent to about 2 cups of coffee and on the higher end of the average energy drink caffeine concentration.
Celsius energy drinks use this stimulating ingredient in the energy blend.
While there is evidence to suggest that gluconolactone can boost energy and stimulate the central nervous system, studies suggest that combining this ingredient with caffeine and taurine can cause dangerous effects on your blood pressure and impede insulin sensitivity in healthy individuals.
This speaks to the risks of Celsius energy drinks and the potential side effects of Celsius energy drinks.
In other words, while most of the ingredients in Celsius drinks are not inherently dangerous on their own, the combination of stimulants used can cause adverse effects in the body, such as dangerous increases in blood pressure, heart rate, and blood sugar regulation.
Green Tea Leaf Extract
We often hear about the health benefits of drinking green tea, as green tea is rich in antioxidants.
Green tea is also caffeinated and has been found to boost metabolism.
However, a research review found that green tea leaf extract can cause liver injury when consumed in high doses.
Unfortunately, one of the dangers of drinking Celsius energy drinks is that the Celsius nutrition labeling does not specify how much of each of these energy ingredients is included.
Therefore, it’s impossible to know how much green tea extract you are consuming when you drink a can of Celsius.
Although it’s unlikely that immediate Celsius drink side effects would indicate that you are having some kind of liver problem, habitually consuming Celsius energy drinks may cause liver damage over time.
Furthermore, consuming Celsius energy drinks in conjunction with alcohol, Tylenol, or some other substance that is toxic to the liver can magnify the risks of Celsius drinks.
Vitamins and Minerals In Celsius Energy Drinks
In addition to the Celsius caffeine and energy blend, Celsius energy drinks have nine vitamins and minerals added to the formulation.
Many “functional energy drinks“ add certain vitamins and minerals that are thought to augment energy production, namely B vitamins.
In general, the complex of B vitamins provides numerous functions in the body but is largely involved with energy production.
Fortunately, the B vitamins are water-soluble, which means that excess amounts should be excreted in the urine as long as you are well hydrated and your kidneys are functioning well.
However, there hasn’t been a ton of research about whether toxicity can occur if you take these vitamins in extremely high doses, such as the amounts listed on the Celsius drink nutrition facts label.
For example, Celsius energy drinks contain 1000% of the DV of biotin, which means that it is ten times the amount that your body probably needs in a day in a single can of Celsius.
There are also a few minerals in fairly high doses, particularly chromium.
While these vitamins and minerals may help boost energy, the general consensus in the nutrition community is that unless you have deficiencies in these vitamins and minerals, consuming them in excess will not increase energy.
It may also lead to side effects or put a burden on your liver and kidneys to process the excessive intake.
Other Ingredients In Celsius Drinks
Celsius drinks also have a few inactive ingredients aside from filtered water: citric acid, “natural flavor,“ and sucralose.
While these Celsius drink ingredients may seem innocuous enough, there are actually some concerns over all of these energy drink ingredients.
Consumed in excess, citric acid can also be damaging to tooth enamel because it is acidic and can cause erosion of your enamel.
“Natural flavorings” is an umbrella term used to describe different chemical compounds that are used to flavor food products.
Even though the word “natural flavors“ makes you think that these compounds are inherently healthy, keep in mind that there are many natural substances that are toxic (cocaine, for example).
This is certainly not to say that Celsius flavorings are derived from toxic substances, but ingredients used for natural flavorings can come from harmful compounds, fungi, bacteria, and poorly researched ingredients.
Finally, sucralose is a non-caloric sweetener often used as a sugar substitute in diet energy drinks, diet sodas, or sugar-free drinks.
Unfortunately, although sucralose may not contain usable calories for the body, some evidence suggests that it still impacts your metabolism as if you have consumed sugar, meaning that you can gain weight from consuming artificial sweeteners in high amounts.
Additionally, some studies have found that sucralose causes the same insulin responses that regular sugar does, defeating the benefit of artificial sweeteners like sucralose for people with diabetes or insulin resistance.
Finally, the intense sweetness of artificial sweeteners like sucralose can increase cravings for sweeter and sweeter foods, potentially causing weight gain and disrupting your body‘s ability to detect when calories have been consumed (thus altering the hunger/fullness hormonal regulation cycle).
Is Celsius Bad For You?
Overall, it certainly cannot be reasonably argued that Celsius energy drinks are healthy, but occasionally, drinking Celsius will probably not cause a significant issue.
It’s hard to say whether it is better to drink Celsius vs Red Bull or Celsius vs 5-Hour Energy or any other energy drink because most of these commercial energy drinks have their pros and cons.
Red Bull and Monster energy drinks are packed with added sugar (unless you get sugar-free Red Bull or other sugar-free energy drinks), and in some ways, some feel like saving on the calories with artificial sweeteners is better than drinking sweetened energy drinks for weight loss.
However, as discussed, there are also health risks associated with artificial sweeteners in diet energy drinks like Celsius.
Ultimately, you are much better off avoiding Celsius energy drinks and all commercial energy drinks, for that matter. If you want a healthier alternative with caffeine, caffeinated tea like green tea, Matcha tea, or black tea or coffee is a much better option.
Then, you can support optimal energy production by eating a well-balanced, nutritious diet packed with fresh fruits and vegetables, nuts, seeds, healthy fats, and protein and avoiding inflammatory foods.
Get plenty of sleep and stay well hydrated, and then you will likely find that you aren’t reaching for the closest Celsius energy drink to power you through your day.
Celsius Drink FAQs:
Is Celsius an energy drink?
Yes, according to the company, Celsius is a “fitness and energy drink.”
What are the common Celsius side effects?
Celsius side effects may depend on your personal sensitivity to caffeine as well as how many cans of Celsius drink you consume.
According to research, the most commonly cited energy drink side effects include insomnia or difficulty sleeping, stress, restlessness, agitation, and mood changes.
There is some evidence to suggest that drinking too many energy drinks can potentially cause high blood pressure and heart arrhythmias, especially in susceptible individuals with cardiovascular disease risk factors, children and teens.
Is Celsius bad for you?
Celsius energy drinks aren’t necessarily as “bad” for you as some energy drinks because they have far fewer calories, no added sugar, and some “better” ingredients.
However, Celsius drinks are also not “good” for you or provide essential nutrients you can’t get in healthier real food sources.
How much caffeine is in Celsius energy drinks?
Celsius caffeine content depends on the specific type of Celsius beverage.
Celsius caffeine content by Celsius product line is as follows:
- CELSIUS Original has 200 mg of caffeine per can.
- CELSIUS HEAT has 300 mg of caffeine per can.
- CELSIUS On-The-Go has 200 mg of caffeine per packet.
- CELSIUS Stevia has 200 mg of caffeine per can.
- CELSIUS BCAA has 100 mg of caffeine per can.
Can you drink Celsius while pregnant?
It is not recommended that you drink Celsius while pregnant.
The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) recommends that pregnant women limit their caffeine consumption to less than 200 mg per day.
Because Celsius caffeine is at least 200 mg per can (guarana likely makes the caffeine higher), it can be argued that you can possibly safely consume part of one can of Celsius over the course of a day while pregnant.
However, the company and most medical professionals highly discourage pregnant women from drinking Celsius.
Excessive caffeine consumption during pregnancy can have unfavorable outcomes for maternal health and fetal health, so you should absolutely not drink Celsius while pregnant unless you specifically receive medical clearance from your OB/GYN to do so.
For information on Prime sports drinks, click here.