Is GFuel for Kids? Ingredients, Risks & Safer Alternatives

GFuel, a popular brand of energy drink, is greatly appreciated by both the gaming and fitness industries. Collaborations with influential individuals such as Pewdipie and Logic, who have a large online following, lead to extensive promotion of GFuel products.

While their website outlines that those under the age of 18 shouldn’t consume the product, their online sponsorships push adverts out to people of all ages.

Can kids drink GFuel? GFuel is not recommended for those under 18 due to its high caffeine content. Consuming caffeinated products while underage is known to cause negative side effects such as sleep disruptions, nervousness, and tremors. Long-term excessive use has been linked to severe heart issues and anxiety. 

Since these energy drinks are becoming a popular choice for those between the ages of 13-18, here’s what you need to know about your child and GFuel. 

GFuel and Kids – What To Know

Setting standards and expectations regarding your child’s nutritional consumption is important for their overall well-being.

Determining how energy drinks, like GFuel, fit into their diet can be a multi-faceted and often conflicting conversation.

What Is GFuel?

GFuel is a clean energy brand that is designed to increase energy, endurance, and focus. GFuel sells canned energy drinks, a powdered energy formula, a powdered hydration formula, and energy crystals.

All product lines were designed to be healthier alternatives to traditional energy-boosting supplements. 

Is GFuel Healthy?

GFuel is a healthier alternative to competing energy supplements as it includes zero sugars and is packed with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.

None of the ingredients in GFuel pose a significant health risk when consumed in moderate quantities. When used moderately by individuals over 18 with no underlying medical conditions, GFuel is safe and healthy. 

GFuel Ingredients

GFuel products contain zero fats and sugars, low carb levels, and a low overall caloric value. However, many additional ingredients need to be reviewed to have a complete nutrition scope. 

Artificial Sweeteners, Colors, and Preservatives

  • Silicon Dioxide: An artificial preservative made from a natural compound to prevent clumping. Generally safe when consumed moderately. 
  • Citric Acid: An artificial preservative used for its acidity, flavor enhancement, and preservative properties. Since manufactured citric acid is produced from mold, it is a known allergen.
  • Red, Yellow, and Blue Dyes: Artificial coloring from petroleum-derived substances. Artificial dyes may cause hyperactivity in children. 
  • Sucralose: An artificial sweetener that poses an increased health risk to those with insulin or thyroid issues. 
  • Maltodextrin: An additive made from corn, rice, potato starch, or wheat. GFuel is listed as a gluten-free product, so its Maltodextrin derivative is not wheat. 
  • Acesulfame Potassium: An artificial sweetener that has been linked to negative effects on good gut bacteria growth. 

Energy Complex

  • Taurine: An essential amino acid that supports the brain, eyes, heart, and muscles. 
  • L-Citrulline Malate: An amino acid compound that improves oxygen delivery and delays muscle fatigue.
  • Caffeine: A natural stimulant that is used to boost metabolism, improve mood, and increase focus. 
  • Glucuronolactone: A metabolite used primarily to combat fatigue and detoxify the liver. 
  • L-Acetyl-L-Carnitine HCL: A nutrient involved in energy production and the mobilization of fatty acids. 
  • Velvet Bean Seed Extracts: An L-Dopa herb that benefits the nervous system. Certain medications for mental health can be affected by this ingredient. 

Focus Complex

  • L-Tyrosine: A nonessential amino acid that helps produce dopamine and epinephrine. 
  • N-Acetyl-L-Tyrosine: A more water-soluble form of Tyrosine.
  • Adenosine-5-Triphosphate Disodium Salt: An energy source for cells. 

Antioxidant Complex

The antioxidant complex is derived from the following fruit powders: 

  • Pomegranate 
  • Pineapple 
  • Apple
  • Orange 
  • Blueberry 
  • Grape Seed
  • Grapefruit 
  • Plum 
  • Raspberry 
  • Strawberry 
  • Watermelon 
  • Lemon 
  • Lime 
  • Melon 
  • Sour Cherry 
  • Papaya 
  • Peach 
  • Pyrus Communis

How Much Caffeine Is in GFuel?

GFuel’s product lines contain varying amounts of caffeine.

From lowest to highest, here’s the list:

  • GFuel Hydration Formula flavors are caffeine free.
  • GFuel Energy Crystal flavors have 60 mg of caffeine. 
  • GFuel Energy Formula flavors have 140 mg of caffeine.
  • GFuel Energy Drink flavors have 300 mg of caffeine.

Amount of Caffeine in Popular Energy Drinks

Energy DrinkCaffeine Content
G Fuel150mg per serving
Bang Energy300mg per 16oz can
Reign Total Body Fuel300mg per 16oz can
Starbucks Tripleshot Energy225mg per 15oz can
5 Hour Energy Shots200mg per 2oz shot
Alani Nu Energy200mg per 12oz can
Celsius200mg per 12oz can
3D200mg per 16oz can
Ghost Energy200mg per 16oz can
C4 Energy200mg per 16oz can
Mountain Dew Rise Energy180mg per 16oz can
NOS Energy Drink160mg per 16oz can
Monster Energy160mg per 16oz can
Rockstar Energy160mg per 16oz can
ZOA Energy160mg per 16oz can
Sneak Energy150mg per 16oz can
Zevia Energy120mg per 12oz can
Red Bull80mg per 8oz can
The caffeine content may vary depending on the specific product and flavor within each brand.
Always check the label for the most accurate information.

Effects of Caffeine on Children

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that children ages 12-18 intake no more than 100 mg of caffeine per day.

For those under the age of 12, the AAP recommends no additional intake of caffeine outside of what naturally occurs in their daily diet.

Excess caffeine can cause the following side effects in children: 

  • Tremors
  • Nervousness
  • Disrupted sleep patterns
  • Hyperactivity
  • Impulsion
  • Accelerated heart rate
  • High blood pressure
  • Dehydration
  • Digestive and urinary issues

Caffeine is particularly dangerous to those who suffer from heart, nervous system, or mental health issues.

Long-term excessive caffeine use can cause irregular heartbeat, heart failure, anxiety, and addiction to the substance. 

How Much Lead Is in GFuel?

GFuel does contain trace amounts of lead due to its plant-based ingredients. Traces of lead occur naturally in the soil, so products that contain fruits and vegetables are likely to have a presence of lead. 

The state of California sued GFuel for not having a warning label about the lead content of their products.

While the exact quantity of lead in GFuel is unknown, California’s intake regulations require reporting if the lead content is over 0.5mg.

GFuel’s products are likely within safe lead limits as there was no recall and a small settlement amount was paid. 

GFuel Side Effects

While GFuel claims to have no side effects, this statement could potentially be false.

Drinks with high-caffeine concentrations can have varying negative effects depending on the size, age, and body composition. 

Is GFuel for Kids?

GFuel was not created to be marketed to or consumed by children under the age of 18. Both the brand and its sponsors are adamant about making this information known to consumers. 

Energy Drink Age Limit

The Food and Drug Administration has not established a safe limit on caffeine for children and adolescents.

However, the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Center for Disease Control have collaboratively established that energy drinks should not be included in a minor’s diet.

Due to these recommendations, many energy drink companies have placed warnings on their products regarding underage consumption.

Though these warnings are non-enforceable, they serve to educate parents about the risks posed by their products. 

Sports Drinks vs. Energy Drinks

Sports drinks and energy drinks are made with ingredients that propagate different responses in the body.

Sports drinks are made with carbohydrates and electrolytes, which serve to fuel and hydrate, whereas energy drinks are made with stimulants that create a central nervous response. 

A clinical study by the American Academy of Pediatrics reasoned that sports drinks may be beneficial to young athletes frequently participating in high-intensity activity in addition to water due to its restorative properties.

The same study outlines that energy drinks have no health benefits to children or adolescents. 

In both cases, the presence of high sugar content, dyes, and additives can increase the risk of dental erosion, weight gain, and other health problems. 

Kid-Friendly Energy Drinks

If you’re looking for alternatives to GFuel and other stimulant-based drinks, try these kid-friendly options: 

  • Water
  • Fruit, veggie, or herb-infused Water
  • Coconut water
  • Plant or nut-based milk
  • 100% fruit juice
  • Pedialyte
  • Pediasure

Alternatives to G Fuel

There are several alternatives on the market that offer similar benefits with potentially healthier ingredients.

Here are a few options to consider:

  1. Rogue Energy: Rogue Energy contains a similar amount of caffeine but also includes a blend of nootropics designed to enhance cognitive function. Rogue Energy is sugar-free and offers a variety of flavors.
  2. Sneak Energy: Sneak Energy is sugar-free and contains a blend of vitamins, minerals, and amino acids. It offers a variety of unique flavors and is available in both tubs and single-serving sachets.
  3. Celsius: Celsius is a fitness-focused energy drink that contains a blend of green tea extract, guarana seed extract, and ginger root in addition to caffeine. It’s available in both carbonated and non-carbonated versions and offers a variety of flavors.
  4. Matcha Tea: For a natural alternative, consider matcha tea. Matcha is a type of powdered green tea that is high in antioxidants and provides a gentle, sustained energy boost without the crash often associated with energy drinks.

Related Questions:

Can 10-year-olds Drink Coffee? 

While a 10-year-old can drink coffee, it’s recommended that they don’t. Coffee, despite its beneficial properties, has high caffeine content. Excessive doses of caffeine in children have been linked to several negative side effects. 

Are Energy Drinks Better Than Coffee?

No! While they may have similar caffeine content, coffee contains natural antioxidants as opposed to the artificial ingredients in energy drinks.

Moderate consumption of black coffee has been shown to reduce the risk of stroke, diabetes, kidney and heart disease, Parkinson’s disease, and Alzheimer’s disease.

Does G Fuel have any side effects?

Some people may experience side effects from the high caffeine content in G Fuel, such as jitteriness, insomnia, or increased heart rate. If you have any health conditions or are sensitive to caffeine, it’s best to consult with a healthcare professional before consuming G Fuel.

Is G Fuel safe for pregnant or breastfeeding women?

Pregnant or breastfeeding women are generally advised to limit their caffeine intake. So with this in mind, it is probably best to avoid G Fuel and other energy drinks while pregnant or breastfeeding.

If you really feel you need it, it would be best to consult your OB or other healthcare professional.

Conclusion

GFuel and other energy drinks are not recommended for children and adolescents. These products contain stimulants, dyes, and additives that can pose significant health risks if used in excess.

Try to guide your children toward healthier energy-boosting alternatives containing electrolytes and naturally derived carbohydrates.