Energy drinks, a Scottish research has suggested, do infact help athletes improve their endurance and levels of performance.
The study of young sportsmen and women found that consuming the drinks before and during exercise meant they could play in team games for longer than those who had not used the products.
The researchers said the study highlighted the importance of hydration and energy intake for performance during intense sporting activities, reports the Scotsman.
The Edinburgh University study recruited student's aged 12 to 14 to help assess the effectiveness of sports drinks.
The team measured the performance of the 15 youngsters during exercises designed to simulate the physical demands of team games such as football, rugby and hockey.
The group, who were recruited from George Watson's College in Edinburgh and other schools, were tested using one particular brand of energy drink called High5. The solution contains carbohydrates, sodium, potassium, magnesium and calcium.
The performance of students using the product was compared with that of players when they drank a non-carbohydrate placebo solution.
The researchers found that taking the 6 per cent carbohydrate-electrolyte solution helped the young people continue high-intensity, stop-start activity for up to 24 per cent longer than those using the placebo drink.
The research has been written in the European Journal of Applied Physiology.