Energy drinks

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On Monday I checked on the world via various social media sites and sipped a cup of tea with Big Welsh whilst listening to Radio 5Live as we do in the kitchen, of a morning. They would shortly be discussing energy drinks. BOOM!! Did I have a story to tell! They duly phoned me and there I was chatting with Nicky Campbell, him all jolly and me all croaky!

During the conversation I discussed my love of Lucozade and its childhood associations, Mook and her blue energy drink, I listened to other contributors and then we had a natter about coffee. Of course I had something to say I’m rather partial to my coffee!!

As a child visiting my Grandmother I always asked for some of her orange recovery drink in a tiny cup and thought nothing of it. Granny always said we could only have a small amount as it was a grown up drink. I thought nothing of that comment either!

Years later my husband berated me for drinking heaps of my favourite recovery drink, I’d drink it like pop, he’s the one who is very good with his diet and exercise, I’m not. I get intake and output muddled, plus I’m lazy! Fast forward a number of years, we had children and fed & watered them sensibly. I’m a keen cook and love experimenting with food having been taught to cook by both of my grandmothers and dabbling in home economics at school. I blended, mushed, puréed and subsequently relaxed when a friend of my father’s suggested Loop could eat garlic bread if she can eat bread. A revelation!!

Hurtle forward many more years and Big Welsh decided to take Loops & Mook skiing whilst he had some holiday to take before the end of the year, I was bang in the middle of my 7 days and Laree was Mary in the Nativity. Adding everything up and knowing I wasn’t working between Christmas and NYE we agreed it would be a nice break for them to go skiing and have some time together whilst I worked, watched the Nativity and got everything ready for Christmas.

I would get regular texts and phone calls about which piste they’d been down, how long it took, where they had lunch, who sat with who on the 2-man – well you get the picture!! One text that stood out was along the lines of “Mook bought herself a blue energy drink from a vending machine at the pool and is mental”. Now I know my girls are pretty bonkers and boisterous but this sounded something totally different!!

Sure enough she was mental and the next day she had a massive headache, she was apparently very subdued; what a surprise! As a result of that behaviour we wouldn’t be buying energy drinks again.

After a visit to the opticians one day Mook ran ahead to our local Nero and asked for a huge cappuccino, extra shot, extra hot with cinnamon on top. The friendly barista looked at her and said really? She said yes it’s for my mummy, for Nellie. Oh ok they said! When I walked in we had a giggle! I have to admit I was mighty impressed that a child had been questioned about her caffeine order.

Now I don’t profess to be a parenting expert or guru (blimey I was berated enough for breastfeeding and cloth nappies) so I tend to take parenting advice with a pinch of salt as every child is different, every family has their own quirks and it’s not always general advice is best advice. However the choices I have made for my family are based on experience and understanding.

I’m not saying energy drinks are a banned substance in our house, I’ll often have a glass of Lucozade when I’m feeling poorly, what I am saying is “no girls I’m not buying them”, there’s water in the tap, a juicer and some fruit, lemon barley water, teas of many descriptions and milk. That’s enough to be getting on with surely?

It’s my understanding that energy drinks aren’t targeted at under 16s yet I know and see plenty of under 16s drinking them. In vending machines there’s a selection of energy drinks – I’ve yet to see a vending machine ask a customer if a drink is age appropriate!

If we’re not going to buy energy drinks then doesn’t that say something? We’ve thought about it and decided no, we don’t want to buy energy drinks. Our choice, an informed choice we’ve made for our family.

You can listen in here if you’d like to hear the full discussion click this link and I’m on at around 43 minutes or so.

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