Are Ghost Energy Drinks Bad for You? Expert Analysis

Ghost energy drinks have bright, candy-colored labels and cute cartoon graphics that make them stand out on the shelf from similar products. They come in various flavors, contain about 200 mg of caffeine per can, and have no added sugars. With increasing popularity, one may wonder: are Ghost energy drinks bad for you? In this article, we take a closer look at the product and see if drinking it could have any side effects.

What are Ghost energy drinks?

The marketing team behind Ghost energy drinks claims they are a “fully transparent, fully loaded, feel-good energy drink we’ve all been waiting for.” The company first entered the energy drink market in 2016. Over time, the brand has grown and appears to be gaining popularity, particularly due to the fact that consumers are looking for products that have zero sugar and no artificial coloring.


There is a range of flavors in the Ghost energy drink lineup, including bubblegum, orange creamsicle, cherry limeade, sour green apple, and sour watermelon, which they’ve partnered with Warheads Candies to produce.

Are Ghost energy drinks bad for you?

Ghost energy drinks might be bad for you if not consumed in moderation, as the high caffeine content can lead to health issues like heart palpitation, increased anxiety, and insomnia. However, there are so many layers that influence whether a food or drink is healthy or not. Regarding energy drinks, a key focus should be on their caffeine content and the quality of ingredients, which we will review in depth later in the article.

Ghost energy drinks are sold in 16 oz cans, each containing 200 mg of natural caffeine (from coffee beans). They are also made with a patented ingredient called Neurofactor coffee extract, which offers approximately 0.7% caffeine. This ingredient adds a minimal amount of caffeine to the formula, but some consumers may want to be aware of it.

Safe caffeine levels for most healthy adults are approximately 400 mg or four to five cups of brewed coffee per day. Therefore, drinking around two cans of Ghost daily (and no other caffeinated product) should leave you within the acceptable caffeine intake guidelines.

However, people who drink several cups of coffee and energy drinks every day are more likely to overconsume caffeine and surpass the healthy guidelines. As a result, they may experience unpleasant side effects, including:

  • Jitters
  • Anxiousness
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Upset stomach
  • Headache
  • A general feeling of unhappiness (dysphoria)

What do health authorities have to say?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states that consuming energy drinks can increase the risk of cardiovascular health complications and dehydration, as people may supplement their water intake with caffeinated energy drinks.


All energy drinks should be consumed in moderation because they are heavily processed, can be high in caffeine, and may contain additives and preservatives. A healthy adult with no medical conditions may drink Ghost energy drinks without side effects, but healthcare providers wouldn’t consider them a healthy (or essential) beverage choice.

Ghost energy ingredients

Let’s review the ingredients used in Ghost energy drinks. These ingredients are listed on the company’s website under product information.

One can of Ghost Energy (16 fl oz, Citrus) contains the following:
5 kcal
Total fat
0 g
30 mg
Total carbohydrate
1 g
Total sugars
0 g
0 g
1,000 mg
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000-calorie diet. Your values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.


Taurine is an amino acid commonly used in energy drinks. It’s believed to support physical performance and increase alertness. However, researchers aren’t sure how much of those benefits are from taurine or caffeine (another known stimulant), and more studies are needed to understand taurine's effects better.


Caffeine stimulates the central nervous system and may give you a temporary energy boost, depending on caffeine sensitivity. Ghost energy drinks' primary source of caffeine is an extraction from coffee beans, with each can containing about 200 mg.

B vitamins

Ghost energy drinks contain several B-group vitamins, including B3, B6, and B12. These micronutrients support daily function but can easily be obtained from other dietary sources like beans, lean meats, eggs, fruits, and vegetables — foods that should be included in a balanced diet.

AstraGin root extracts

AstraGin root extract is a blend of P. notoginseng and A. membranaceus. The patented extract supposedly aids gut health and helps your body absorb other nutrients. However, there’s little scientific research to validate its effectiveness in humans, and researchers noted this product is not safe for pregnant people.



Alpha-GPC is added to energy drinks as it’s believed to improve cognitive function, memory, and overall mental performance. However, current research suggests that Alpa-GPC isn’t clinically proven to provide these benefits, and it might be a placebo effect. More research is needed to understand how dosage, timing, and other factors would affect its impact.

Artificial sweeteners

Artificial sweeteners add flavor to products without adding refined sugars. Ghost energy drinks use sucralose and acesulfame potassium (Ace-K), which are both FDA-approved and safe for most people to consume.

Are there any benefits of Ghost energy drinks?

Currently, there is no research on the health effects of consuming Ghost energy drinks, so we’re unable to say if this beverage will benefit your short-term and long-term health. Overall, based on the ingredients we reviewed and due to limited scientific evidence, it’s unlikely this beverage will provide meaningful benefits to health.

It’s your decision whether or not to drink Ghost energy drinks. If you try them, consider how you feel afterward and whether you truly feel more energized. Are there other things you can do daily that help you feel more energized, such as getting better sleep or eating more regularly throughout the day?

To improve your health and energy levels through meaningful, evidence-based practices, consult your healthcare team or consider meeting with a registered dietitian.

Are Ghost energy drinks marketed to kids?

The Ghost energy drink website clearly states that its products are for people ages 18+ only. If you search for their beverage products online, you will also see a version of their official statement: "Ghost energy products are only intended for persons 18 years or older.”

People under the age of 18 should stay away from energy drinks as consuming them has been linked to serious health conditions. As a result, the FDA and the American Academy of Pediatrics firmly state that adolescents (or anyone younger) should not drink energy drinks.


Bottom line

Ghost energy drinks contain approximately 200 mg of caffeine and are made with natural and artificial ingredients. People who enjoy sweet, candy-like flavors may be attracted to their product line as some of their flavors include Warhead Candies and Swedish Fish.

These beverages may not be considered 'healthy,' but Ghost has average caffeine levels and may fit into your lifestyle depending on your overall health status. If you have any concerns, ask your doctor if it’s safe for you to drink. Additionally, be mindful of your overall caffeine intake from all sources to avoid exceeding recommended daily limits.

A healthy alternative that provides hydration and doesn’t include caffeine or artificial ingredients is water naturally flavored with fruits and herbs. A medical professional can help you find lifestyle and dietary changes that help you feel energized.


Key takeaways:


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