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Energy drink makers have heyday as FSSAI stays mum

28,April, 2017
 

Those that do not fit into any categories are categorised as proprietary foods.

Hyderabad: Sports nutrition products in India are not regulated, with the Food Safety Standard Authority of India (FSSAI) having created no specific guidelines. Sports nutrition products are categorised as regular food, nutritional supplements, or dietary supplements, depending on the formulation. Those that do not fit into any categories are categorised as proprietary foods.

Vilas Shirhatti who works with FSSAI’s expert group on proprietary foods says that banned substances are often found in sports nutrition products. “While these banned substances have short-term benefits, they pose health hazards in the long run. There is a list of banned ingredients which must not be used in formulations and it has to be strictly implemented,” he said.

The market is flooded with energy drinks that are in great demand. P. R. Reddy, a state food inspector, says the demand for energy drinks in city colleges and in the IT hub is very high. “We can’t take random action as there is no complaint by anyone us-ing these products,” he said.

Fatigue is a common symptom of today’s fast paced lifestyle and these products are in great demand to combat it. Dr S. B. Raju, senior general physician said, “Energy drinks and products made of whey protein and soy protein are being used randomly without identifying if the body really requires them. The issue of fatigue has to be dealt by modifying lifestyle and eating balanced food. But the craze for fad foods has got not only youngsters but also middle-aged women and senior citizens opting for it to boost their energy. These are available over the counter and there is no control over it.”

The first organ that gets stressed is the kidney when these products are used without consulting a nutritionist or doctor. Food experts say it’s essential to have labelling on these products directing consumers to take an expert opinion before trying out these products.

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