A request from US SERVICEMEMBERS AND DoD CONTRACTORS Addressed to Major General Keith Lee Thurgood Commander, Army and Air Force Exchange Service WE THE UNDERSIGNED WOULD LIKE TO BRING YOUR ATTENTION TO THE FOLLOWING PROBLEM, WITH RECOMMENDATION(S): In today's highly-demanding, fast-paced military environment, high-octane energy drinks have become the beverage of choice for many U.S. service members. Their popularity is clearly evident in any AAFES store, with palettes and palettes of Monster & and Red Bull lining the aisles -- sold not only by the can, but by the case load. Stars and Stripes reports that AAFES worldwide energy drinks sales "rocketed" from 954,008 containers in 2006 to 2,475,475 in 2008. According to the report, "energy drinks, such as Red Bull and Monster, now account for five of the top 10 cold beverage sellers at AAFES facilities." There is no indication that these rocketing figures will decline anytime soon. While the demand for these products may be a boost to AAFES retail sales, the concern over the potential negative health effects has many service members, dietitians, dentists and even doctors concerned. Evidence is beginning to emerge that highly caffeinated, sugar-saturated energy drinks may be harmful to our community and our mission. Military officials have warned that "guzzling those drinks [Monster, Red Bull] may not be so good for the consumer." Energy drinks are meant to supply mental and physical stimulation for a short period of time. Most contain high combinations of caffeine, glucuronolactone (a carbohydrate included because it is purported to fight fatigue and provide a sense of well-being) and sugar. The caffeine in the majority of these drinks is equivalent to a 20 oz. cup of coffee and have nearly twice as much as a 12 oz. cola drink. Red Bull alone contains around five teaspoons per 250 ml can. The main health risk associated with consuming these quantities of caffeine is the effect it has on heart rate and blood pressure. Healthadel.com reports that consuming these large doses of caffeine can cause the heart rate to become so accelerated that it may lead to an irregular or quickened heart beat which can last long after the beverage has been consumed. For people with heart conditions, this can be very dangerous. The sugar in an energy drink helps produce a "buzz" that takes immediate effect, stimulating the nervous system to produce increased energy levels. The initial burst of energy is short-lived however, and a "crash" effect almost always follows. The individual then feels worse than before and often has a craving for more even sugar. Doctors say this is a very unhealthy pattern for the body to get into, and it can weaken the immune system. Therefore, the undersigned petitioners are asking AAFES commanders to also offer health-conscious clients and energy drink consumers an alternative. The issuers of this request have found a beverage we believe is the perfect alternative. These products are both great tasting and are a healthier choice for your customers. We are asking you to stock your shelves and coolers with the all-natural energy drinks Bionic Tonic and Lady Pink, developed by Bionic Products, Inc. Bionic Products has worked top professionals in the beverage industry to create quality energy drinks that offer sustained energy without the caffeine, sugar and carbohydrates synonymous with other top selling brands. In essence, they have created THE energy drink alternative that supports physical and mental alertness without the heavy "crash" effect associated with the drinks you currently supply. According to the company's website ( www.bionicproducts.us ) these products have passed strict guidelines to develop an energy drink beverage with zero calories, zero carbohydrates, zero sugars, zero caffeine and still tastes great. In a recent Las Vegas taste test, 136 out of 158 Albertsons shoppers said they preferred the taste of Bionic Tonic to other top-brand energy drinks like as Red Bull, Rockstar and Monster. Bionic Tonic is quickly becoming the preferred energy drink in Las Vegas and other parts of the country. Bionic Tonic is promoted by Ultimate Fighting Challenge fighters, Frank Mir, and Ken Hahn of the gym "Striking Unlimited." Mir is the current UFC Heavyweight champion, and endorses Bionic-Tonic as part of his daily workout regimen. Both of these men are coaches on Spike TV's The Ultimate Fighter series and are idolized by service members and their families around the world. They are currently endorsing the product through commercials and promotional venues. Bionic Tonic recently became the official energy drink of the Striking Unlimited Mixed Martial Arts Gym where some of the best fighters on the MMA and UFC circuits coach and train. Fighters have stopped drinking other energy drinks such as Red Bull and Monster in support of the all-natural benefits and refreshing citrus taste of Bionic Tonic. Energy drink consumption among service members has become a widespread, world-wide phenomena as more and more personnel downrange search for the right beverage to add a little to kick to their day. The decision to carry this product will not only benefit service members, families and the contractors who support them, but will increase AAFES sales in the energy drink industry worldwide. Therefore, we the undersigned are asking that AAFES help kick-start our "Go Bionic" campaign by adding Bionic Tonic and Lady Pink to your inventory. Thank you, and we look forward to enjoying these great products with your help! AGREED UPON BY THE FOLLOWING PEOPLE:
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