5-hour Energy

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5-hour Energy
5-Hour Energy.png
Type Energy shot
Manufacturer Living Essentials
Country of origin United States
Introduced 2004
Website 5hourenergy.com

5-hour Energy (stylized as 5-hour ENERGY) is a flavored "energy shot" brand made by Living Essentials in Wabash, Indiana, whose parent firm is Innovation Ventures in Farmington Hills, Michigan.[1] The company was founded by CEO Manoj Bhargava and launched in 2004,[2] 5-Hour Energy was first distributed across the United States of America by independent wagon-jobbers.[3] According to the company the product is not U.S Food and Drug Administration approved and contains no sugar or herbal stimulants.[4]

Three states - Oregon, Vermont, Washington - have filed lawsuits accusing 5-Hour Energy's makers of deceptive marketing.[5]


The active ingredients of the 5-hour Energy shot are, in order of listing, vitamin B6, folic acid, vitamin B12, sodium, taurine, glucuronolactone, malic acid, N-Acetyl L-tyrosine, L-phenylalanine, caffeine, and citicoline.[6]


An October 2010 analysis by ConsumerLab.com found the caffeine content of a full bottle of 5-Hour Energy is 207 mg.[7] (It is not clear whether the "Original" or "Extra Strength" product was tested.) The maker claims the product "contains caffeine comparable to a cup of the leading premium coffee". The directions on the 5-Hour bottle recommend taking half of the contents (103 mg of caffeine) for regular use, and the whole bottle for extra energy. A regular cup of coffee has less than 100 mg/250 ml cup.[8]

In 2012, Forbes magazine commissioned an independent lab to analyze the contents within full bottles of 5-Hour Energy. The findings showed that the regular strength 5-Hour Energy contained 157 mg of caffeine, whereas the Extra Strength version had a caffeine content of 206 mg, very close to that determined by ConsumerLab.com [9] The regular strength bottles sold in the United Kingdom contain 156 mg of caffeine.[10]

In December 2012, Consumer Reports published an article on 27 energy drinks including 5-hour Energy, which compared the caffeine content of the 27 drinks. Caffeine levels in 5-hour Energy are: Decaf (6 mg), Original (215 mg), and Extra Strength (242 mg).[11]

In April 2013, Living Essentials began an ad campaign to clarify the health facts about 5-hour Energy and caffeine. The ad and its related web page state that Original 5-hour Energy has 200 mg, and that Extra Strength has 260 mg.[12]


Consumer Reports reviewed a double blind study and reported that "5-Hour Energy will probably chase away grogginess at least as well as a cup of coffee."[7] They went on to state that "little if any research" indicated that amino acids and B vitamins would result in a difference in energy level.[7]


5-hour Energy should be avoided by children 12 and under and nursing or pregnant women.[7]

The health consequences of energy drink use in adolescents are unknown. In one adolescent patient, use of 5-hour Energy was associated with the first-ever seizure experienced by the patient, and the patient had to be taken to the emergency department. As well as another young man who had seizures strongly believed to be linked to a regular consumption of the energy-shot.[13]

Legal issues[edit]

Innovation Ventures has sued the makers of products such as "6-Hour Power" and "8-Hour Energy" for trademark infringement.[1]

A deceased customer's family sued Living Essentials, the manufacturer of 5-hour Energy, alleging that repeated consumption of the drink for a period of one month caused a heart attack, that the product was deceptively labeled with regard to health hazards, and that, absent the deception, the decedent would not have consumed the product.[14] This case was voluntarily dismissed on December 5, 2011.[15]

The New York attorney general has recently started to investigate whether the multibillion-dollar energy-drink industry is deceiving consumers with misstatements about the ingredients and health value of its products. Furthermore, some scientists and health experts say energy drinks deliver all their kick from caffeine, and that other ingredients, while not appearing to be dangerous, are simply a marketing gimmick. It is safe for the average person to consume about 400 milligrams of caffeine per day, but over-consumption could cause heart problems, according to health experts.[16]

On November 14, 2012, it was announced the federal government received reports of 13 deaths from the past four years that cited the possible involvement of 5-Hour Energy, according to Food and Drug Administration records. The article explained that "The filing of an incident report with the F.D.A. does not mean that a product was responsible for a death or an injury or contributed in any way to it. Such reports can be fragmentary in nature and difficult to investigate."[17]

Notable people, Sponsorships and Philanthropy[edit]

  • Manoj Bhargava is the founder and CEO of 5-Hour Energy.[18]
  • In 2012 actor James Horan began playing the sheriff in commercials for 5-hour Energy.[19]
  • As of 2012, pro golfer Jim Furyk endorses the product.[20]
  • Clint Bowyer drives the 5-Hour Energy Toyota Camry in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.
  • A portion of sales from the Cherry flavor support the Special Operations Warrior Foundation.[21]
  • The company supports VetTix, which supplies sporting and entertainment event tickets to military veterans.[22]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b O'Connor, Clare. "The Mystery Monk Making Billions With 5-Hour Energy". Forbes Magazine. Retrieved Feb 27, 2012. 
  2. ^ "How 5-Hour Energy Got Started". Fundable. 
  3. ^ "Family Business Revolutionizing Independent Retail Distribution Industry". International Business Times. Retrieved March 19, 2015. 
  4. ^ "Frequently Asked Questions About 5-Hour Energy". 5hourenergy.com. Retrieved March 6, 2012. 
  5. ^ Lydia Zuraw, Three States Sue 5-Hour Energy Makers For ‘Deceptive’ Advertising, July 22, 2014, Food Safety News
  6. ^ "How to Use 5-hour energy shots". 5hourenergy.com. Retrieved July 14, 2009. 
  7. ^ a b c d "Can 5-Hour Energy kick your afternoon slump?". Consumer Reports. March 2011. 
  8. ^ Bunker. "600 mg a day can lead to nervousness, restlessness, irregular heartbeats and insomnia.". 
  9. ^ O'Connor, Clare (February 8, 2012). "What's In A Bottle Of 5-Hour Energy?". Forbes. 
  10. ^ dislosed in the ingredients list on each bottle
  11. ^ "The buzz on energy-drink caffeine: Caffeine levels per serving for the 27 products we checked ranged from 6 milligrams to 242 milligrams per serving". Consumer Reports. December 2012. 
  12. ^ "5-hour ENERGY® and caffeine - the facts". 12oz Tall, 260mg caffeine. & Extra Strength 5-hour ENERGY® contains caffeine equivalent to 12 ounces of the leading premium coffee. 
  13. ^ "First-Onset Seizure After Use of an Energy Drink". ncbi.nlm.nih.gov. Retrieved 30 September 2012. 
  14. ^ Koleva, Gergana (3 August 2010). "Hearts Attack victims spouse sues 5-hour energy maker for wrongful death". dailyfinance.com. Retrieved 30 September 2012. 
  15. ^ "Hassell v. Innovation Ventures, U.S. Dist. Ct. W.Tenn., Case No. 2:10-cv-02557-JPM-cgc" (PDF). lawyersusaonline.com. 2010. Retrieved 13 June 2014. 
  16. ^ "New York Probes Energy-Drink Makers". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved September 5, 2012. 
  17. ^ Meier, Barry (14 November 2012). "Energy Drink Cited in Death Reports". The New York Times. Retrieved 14 November 2012. 
  18. ^ O'Connor, Clare. "The Mystery Monk Making Billions With 5-Hour Energy". Forbes. Retrieved Feb 8, 2012. 
  19. ^ "James Horan - Actor". jameshoran.com. Retrieved 30 September 2012. 
  20. ^ Shea, Bill (18 June 2012). "5-Hour Energy gets airtime as passenger on Mr. Furyk's Wild Ride at the U.S. Open". Crain Communications. Retrieved 30 September 2012. 
  21. ^ [1]
  22. ^ [2]

External links[edit]