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What is Taurine? Top 4 Facts About What's In Your Energy Drink

So, what is Taurine? If you’ve ever had an energy drink you’ve probably consumed high doses of Taurine, but what is this mysterious compound? In this article, we’ll examine the top benefits and effects of Taurine.

Taurine is similar to amino acids but is ‘not quite’ an amino acid. It is a very safe supplement to take at the recommended dosage because it is similar to chemicals that your body makes naturally. Taurine is often used as a mood and energy boosting chemical and is found in many energy drinks, most often combined with caffeine.

woman drinking Taurine energy drink If you've ever had an energy drink you've had Taurine

What is Taurine? Benefits and Effects

1. Mood booster

A number of studies have indicated that Taurine may be highly beneficial in boosting your mood. Most of these studies have looked into the effects of energy drinks that contain both Taurine and Caffeine.

These studies indicate that taurine offers powerful mood-boosting effects, especially when combined with caffeine. Scientists have found that Taurine and caffeine not only improve mood but may also help to boost your cognitive performance.[1]

However, there is definitely a need for further investigation into the effects of taurine on mood by itself.

2. Helps support a healthy metabolism

Taurine has some powerful effects on your metabolism. Scientists have found that Taurine accumulates in the areas of your body with high rates of metabolism. Taurine is also effective in promoting healthy mitochondria – the ‘powerhouse’ of your cells.[2]

One example is a study that showed the large role of Taurine in cholesterol metabolism, especially in your liver. This is why Taurine is found in high concentrations in your liver.[3]

 

3. Powerful antioxidant effects

big tub of Liftmode taurine, 400 grams Liftmode health supplements: Taurine, 99% purity

Taurine is a very powerful antioxidant, reducing the negative effects of oxidative stress, caused by free radicals. For more information about free radicals and antioxidants, take a read through our article, <available here>.

Some scientists do not classify Taurine as a typical ‘free radical scavenger’. These scientists believe that Taurine is very effective at providing an additional line of protection against free-radicals – especially by supporting your mitochondria.[4]

In addition, Taurine is effective at destroying some of the dangerous reactive compounds called free radicals that occur in your body. Taurine is especially effective at destroying peroxyl, nitric oxide, and superoxide molecules, among others.[5]

 

4. May help to support healthy eyes

You’ll find Taurine in very high concentrations in all the tissues around and in your eyes. In fact, Taurine is the most abundant amino acid in the eye, where it exceeds the concentration of other amino acids by about tenfold. These facts prompted scientists to begin studying the effects of Taurine in our eyes.

The most recent studies have found that high levels of Taurine are crucial for preventing degeneration of cells in your eyes. This is why most researchers now accept that Taurine helps to support healthy eyes.[6]

Recommended Dosage

The recommended dosage for Taurine is around 500 – 2000 mg per dose. Taurine is highly water soluble so you can take it dissolved in water or juice. Taurine has a slightly sweet taste. It is not recommended to exceed 3000 mg (3 grams) per day.[7]

 

Side Effects / Warnings


eyes taurine healthy blue
Taurine may help to support healthy eyes

Taurine is an amino acid that your body can create by itself, and is therefore classed as a ‘nonessential amino acid’. This is one reason that the recent studies on Taurine have not found any adverse effects when taken in doses of up to 3 grams.[8]

Some sources raise concern about the possibility of Taurine potentially exasperating the symptoms of bipolar disorder. Taurine supplements have also not yet been studied sufficiently on pregnant and breast feeding women.[9]

 

What is Taurine? Conclusion

In conclusion, Taurine is a powerful dietary supplement and amino acid. You can take Taurine to help boost your mood and to maintain your cognitive performance. Taurine also helps to support a healthy metabolism, is a powerful antioxidant, and may help to support healthy eyes.

Taurine is similar to amino acids and is very safe as a dietary supplement. The recommended dosage is around 500 – 2000 mg per dose, and it is not recommended to exceed 3 grams per day. Taurine is highly soluble in water and has a slightly sweet taste.

 

References:

[1] R Siedl et al., “A taurine and caffeine-containing drink stimulates cognitive performance and well-being”, Amino Acids. 2000;19(3-4):635-42.

[2] Hansen SH et al., “The important role of taurine in oxidative metabolism”, Adv Exp Med Biol. 2006;583:129-35.

[3] W Chen et al., “The effect of taurine on cholesterol metabolism”, Mol Nutr Food Res. 2012 May;56(5):681-90

[4] CJ Jong et al., “Mechanism underlying the antioxidant activity of taurine: prevention of mitochondrial oxidant production”, Amino Acids. 2012 Jun;42(6):2223-32, Epub 2011 Jun 21.

[5] MW Oliveira et al., “Scavenging and antioxidant potential of physiological taurine concentrations against different reactive oxygen/nitrogen species”, Pharmacol Rep. 2010 Jan-Feb;62(1):185-93.

[6] H Ripps & W Shen, “Review: Taurine: A “very essential” amino acid”, Mol Vis. 2012; 18: 2673–2686, PMC3501277

[7] Taurine, Examine.com, retrieved on December 28, 2016

[8] A Shao & JN Hathcock, “Risk assessment for the amino acids taurine, L-glutamine and L-arginine”, Regul Toxicol Pharmacol. 2008 Apr;50(3):376-99, Epub 2008 Jan 26.

[9] Taurine, WebMD.com, retrieved on December 28, 2016