During my freshman year of college, I had a Calculus 2 professor that didn't speak English. He only graded labs and tests, so I went to class twice a month to turn in my assignment.
I taught myself the class on YouTube (thanks Professor Leonard). Why I paid for a class I taught myself for free - that I didn't even need for my line of work - I don't know.
But one thing is for certain:
There was definitely a TON of procrastination, especially before the final exam.
After skipping class and not doing the work for two weeks straight, I stayed up all night studying for the final exam that'd make or break my grade.
How, you ask?
But not all energy drinks were created equal, and some can even have negative health side effects.
I've tried plenty in my day, on top of tireless research to find the best options for my health, brain, and GPA (speaking of which, I actually pulled off a B on the final and an A in the class...)
You're about to learn about the best energy drinks for studying all night, what to look for, and things to avoid.
Let's dive in!
What is an Energy Drink?
A typical energy drink is any beverage considered an energy source, though they're usually just a soft drink loaded with caffeine and sugar.
It's important to distinguish sports drinks from energy drinks - the former is used to hydrate after intense physical activity using water and electrolytes, while the latter is marketed to enhance mental alertness and physical output.
However, energy drinks usually contain substances that dehydrate you, mainly sugar.
Popular energy drinks include Monster, Red Bull, Nos, and Rockstar Energy.
Is Caffeine Good for Studying?
According to a study from Harvard University, caffeine can be beneficial for late-night study sessions (and studying in general) because it helps boost your focus/alertness. However, caffeine's benefit has a ceiling, meaning it can only help so much.
Furthermore, it DEFINITELY is not a substitute for sleep. Make sure you get a good balance of sleep, nutrition, and caffeine before studying.
That being said, caffeine is generally good for studying, regardless of its source (an energy drink or a cup of coffee).
And since most energy drinks are glorified cans of soda loaded with caffeine, a ton of sugar, and a bunch of other crap, you might as well go for a cup of coffee or a cup of tea.
Do Energy Drinks Help With Studying?
Yes, some studies have shown energy drinks can improve your focus, which helps with studying.
Caffeine is the main ingredient that helps with focus and concentration - it stimulates your nervous system, giving you a short boost of energy, which may also increase your mental clarity/focus.
However, not all energy drinks were created equal. For example, trying to down a Full Throttle - one of the most unhealthy energy drinks out there - may do more harm than good. Since it's loaded with sugar, it'll end up dehydrating you.
Your mind needs plenty of hydration to focus, so dehydrating yourself is definitely counterproductive in any situation, but especially when studying.
On top of that, an energy drink like Full Throttle or Monster will likely give you a short-term energy boost followed by a crash soon after, not ideal for studying all night long. You might be productive for the first hour or two (tops) but then you'll crash faster than a race car slamming into a wall.
You ought to choose your energy drink wisely for studying - a supplement that not only boosts energy and mental clarity, but hydrates you as well, and sustains that feeling for a long time, rather than making you crash shortly after peaking.
Lastly, there is no substitute for a good night's sleep and proper nutrition. Taking care of your body is of the utmost importance, not only for focus during a study session but elsewhere as well. Your body is the vehicle for your soul/mind, so treat it well.
Waking up hungover after downing 10 shots, eating a Big Mac, fries, and a shake, then pounding an energy drink for an all-nighter study session is NOT a good idea.
But assuming you've had a good night's sleep, exercise, and eat right, the right energy drink can be a student's best friend during a late-night (or early morning) study session.
By the way, if you'd prefer to study in the morning rather than staying up all night again, check out our post about studying in the morning without feeling sleepy.
Is Red Bull Good for Studying?
Red Bull is okay for studying, and when consumed in moderation, the caffeine levels should give you a boost in mental clarity and focus. However, the original Red Bull also has 27g of sugar per serving, which isn't good for your body.
Drinking too much sugar can have negative side effects like weight gain and a spike in blood sugar followed by a crash, which is not what you want during a productive study session.
It also has artificial colors and flavors, on top of a bunch of other crap that you can't pronounce.
If Red Bull is all you have available, it'll do the job, but it's not ideal. If I were you, I'd opt for an energy drink with a healthy amount of caffeine, less sugar (ideally, zero sugar), and natural ingredients.
For example, Early Bird has a bunch of nutrients from fruits and vegetables that your body needs - it also has ingredients specifically designed to boost mental clarity, mood, and focus, which are all crucial for a productive study session. More on that below.
What Energy Drink Helps You Focus?
Caffeine is the main ingredient that helps you stay up and focus while studying, but most energy drinks are loaded with other ingredients as well, like sugar, taurine, etc.
While mainstream energy drinks will more or less do the job, there are definitely some chemicals to avoid if you want to truly find the best energy drink for studying.
Energy drinks loaded with sugar will dehydrate you, which isn't good for concentration. That's why Early Bird mixes with water and has a ton of electrolytes, which is like hydration on steroids (in a good way). More on that later.
Generally speaking, traditional energy drinks weren't designed to enhance focus or mood. Instead, they're basically cans of soda with a ton of caffeine and extra sugar, neither of which is an ideal way to focus.
When on the lookout for an energy drink for studying, make sure to buy one that's made with natural ingredients, rather than harmful, synthetic chemicals. Ideally, your drink of choice will also have lots of ingredients that enhance mood, boost clarity, and increase focus as well.
Bad Energy Drink Side Effects for Studying
Make sure you know the potential negative side effects of drinking a traditional energy drink before studying, as consuming them often over a long period of time or just drinking too much of them can have negative consequences.
Most energy drinks have way too much sugar - although they can give you a fast energy boost, it's shortlived. As your blood sugar levels quickly fall, your energy levels - and likely your mood - will too.
The energy crash will not promote focus in the short term and in the long term, depending on sugar for studying isn't a good thing.
Excessive sugar intake can also cause premature aging, lower energy overall (counterproductive), cause weight gain, and increase the risk of type 2 diabetes, among other things.
Make sure your energy drink of choice's ingredients aren't detrimental to your short-term ability to focus and long-term health, especially if you're going to use an energy drink for every study session.
Best Energy Drink for Studying All Night
Early Bird is definitely the best energy drink for studying all night! It was made by hustlers, for hustlers, so you can get sh*t done without the crash.
Long story short, Early Bird has the benefits of an energy drink without a ton of sugar and other harmful chemicals.
For example, Early Bird uses PurCaf & Infinergy, which is natural, patented caffeine from green coffee beans that gives you a mental jumpstart, without the crash. Synthetic caffeine found in most energy drinks and even coffee gives you a quick boost in energy followed by a crash.
The traditional brown coffee beans you're used to are actually green coffee beans after they've been roasted.
According to Ora:
"Coffee beans are roasted to produce the coffee bean that we use for our daily latte. The roasting process alters the bean’s taste, aroma, and color. It also alters the bean’s chemical structure and nutrient concentration. This means that the health benefits associated with drinking coffee and consuming green coffee bean extract, are quite different."
There are actually a ton of health benefits associated with green coffee beans that you wouldn't find in normal caffeine. That's just one reason why Early Bird beats traditional coffee and energy drinks.
Additionally, Early Bird has L-theanine, an amino acid found in tea leaves that promotes smooth energy and intense focus, all day long. It also has GABA, a neurotransmitter that helps your brain cells better communicate (clearing your head and promoting focus/concentration).
Neurofactor is another ingredient in Early Bird, a patented form of coffee-berry that increases BDNF levels (providing elevated focus and mood).
But it gets better - Early Bird has a special, patented form of Ashwagandha (KSM-66) shown to combat that annoying brain fog you get when trying to study for hours on end.
As you can see, Early Bird was designed from the ground up to give you tons of energy throughout the day without the crash - and it has a ton of natural ingredients too that are specifically included to boost focus, concentration, and mood. It even hydrates you, unlike other drinks that strip water from your cells.
There are a ton of other reasons why you should become a member of Club Early Bird that we talk about on our founding story page.
Homemade Energy Drink for Studying
There aren't really any homemade energy drinks you can make that are quite the same as a Red Bull, Monster, or Early Bird for that matter.
But you can definitely make a great energy smoothie with natural ingredients. Though it won't be loaded with caffeine to give you a sudden spike in alertness, a well-made smoothie can give you a constant supply of energy throughout the study session, without the crash.
My favorite recipe is the Wild Blueberry Banana Spinach Power Smoothie from Ambitious Kitchen.
- Frozen blueberries
- Frozen strawberries
- Frozen banana slices
- Baby spinach
- Chia seeds
For the exact ratios, check out the link above. Here's why they chose those ingredients:
Blueberries. Great antioxidants for your skin
Banana. Healthy carbs and thickens the smoothie
Spinach. Spinach gives this smoothie the "Power" in the name. Packed with vitamins, nutrients, fiber, etc. and you won't notice the flavor at all.
Strawberries. Vitamin C boosts your immune system, and the flavor mixes well in this shake!
Milk. Packed with calcium, vitamin D, creamy and delicious;
A sprinkle of Chia Seeds. Chia seeds have Omega-3s, fiber, and protein
For a full list of "homemade energy drink recipes" check out the link!
Energy Drink Ingredients That Help with Focus
The only ingredient in most energy drinks that actually helps with focus and concentration is caffeine. However, there are many more ingredients that help with focus and concentration, like the ones below (all of which are used in the Early Bird morning Cocktail).
Here they are:
PurCaf & Infinergy - The highest quality caffeine around that gives you fast-acting, long-lasting energy, which has been shown to enhance focus and improve studying. Extracted from the green coffee bean.
Electrolytes - You can't focus if you're dehydrated, and most energy drinks dehydrate you because of all the sugar. Instead, Early Bird mixes with water and has electrolytes, known to supercharge hydration.
Ashwagandha - A patented form of Ashwagandha (KSM-66) which has been shown to help eliminate the foggy feeling you get in the morning and when you're trying to study
L-theanine - This ingredient is an amino acid extracted from tea leaves that helps promote energy and focus all day long.
Theobromine - Found in chocolate, it gives you the 'feel-good' feeling without the sugar.
Neurofactor - It's the whole coffee-berry that increases BDNF levels, enhancing focus and mood
Bioperine - This form of black pepper extract has been proven to make all ingredients in Early Bird more bioavailable (work even better)
GABA - Lastly, this neurotransmitter helps promote brain activity and clears your head.
The caffeine in energy drinks can help boost your focus during a long study session, but not all energy drinks were created equal.
Drinking a Red Bull once in a while will get you through a study session, but overall, it's not a great solution. Instead, opt for an energy drink that not only gives you fast-acting, long-lasting energy, but also hydrates you and promotes focus, concentration, and makes you feel good too (without the sugar).
Early Bird is a healthy alternative to traditional energy drinks that was designed from the ground up to help you be more productive all day long without the negative side effects. Join Club Early Bird today so you can finally wake up early and get sh*t done!