A convenience store clerk in eastern Iowa says she’s disgusted by the number of energy drinks she’s selling to young kids. Deena Hendrix is hoping to gain support for an energy drink age limit.
“When I first started working here, I just couldn’t believe it. I was shocked at the young ages – ten, eleven, twelve,” Hendrix said. Many doctors and nutritionists, including dietitian Sarah Young, say the drinks are unhealthy and contain three to five times the amount of caffeine contained in a can of soda.
“They have a lot of calories, sugar and just a lot of things you don’t need,” Young said. Health professionals warn the drinks raise heart-rates, can cause headaches and nausea. Hendrix is fed up with selling the drinks to young children and even questions them at the counter.
She said the kids always tell her their parents don’t know they’re buying the drinks. The mother of three noted some kids buy several cans in one day.
“I have no way to tell them ‘no, I can’t sell it to you.’ I have to. And I hate it…I hate selling to them,” Hendrix said. She’s started a Facebook page called “Make an Age Limit for Energy Drinks.”
Hendrix hopes to get enough followers to bring the issue before a local or state legislator. Some countries already ban energy drinks or enforce strict regulations.
Jillian Petrus, KCRG-TV, Cedar Rapids