Skip to Content

Is C4 Energy Drink Bad For You? (Revealed)

C4 Energy Drink
C4 Energy Drink

You may have heard of the famous C4 Energy drink, a pre-workout energy drink that’s advertised to give you the energy you need to power through your workouts and go all out. 

You’re also probably aware that this drink comes with a whopping 200mg of caffeine which begs the question, is C4 Energy drink bad? 

In my opinion, I certainly think a 16 fl.oz can of C4 Energy isn’t bad for you as long as you consume it in moderation and keep a healthy lifestyle. Plus, this drink contains zero calories and sugar while offering you an energy-boosting blend that can benefit your regular diet.

I’ll course you through the details down below.

C4 Energy Drink Nutrition Facts

It’s important to know the nutritional values of everything we consume, so let’s look at the nutrition facts of a 16 fl.oz can of C4 Energy drink:

Standard ValuesC4 “Original” Carbonated
(16 fl.oz)
Energy0 calories
(Of Which Saturated)
(Of which Sugars)
Vitamin B3(Niacin)30mg
Vitamin B6
Vitamin B9
Vitamin B126μg
Nutrition facts of C4 Energy drink

C4 Energy Drink Ingredients

Each 16 fl.oz can of C4 Original Carbonated drink contains the following:

6.73g of Explosive Performance Energy Blend:

  • Caffeine anhydrous (200mg)
  • CarnoSyn Beta-alanine
  • Beta power Betaine Anhydrous
  • N-acetyl-l-tyrosine
  • Citrulline malate

Also, some quantities of these ingredients:

  • Carbonated water
  • Citric Acid
  • Natural flavors
  • Artificial flavors
  • Potassium sorbate
  • Sucralose 
  • Acesulfame potassium 

Pros Of C4 Energy Drink


A 16 fl.oz can of C4 Energy drink contains zero sugar. However, it’s important to note that sugar doesn’t mean all bad because your body still needs glucose (blood sugar), which is a source of fuel for your cells.

Your body breaks down carbohydrates from food and drinks then converts them into glucose, and all that excess glucose will then be store in your liver and muscles. 

In my opinion, the C4 Energy drink being a sugar-free drink is definitely an added advantage, considering that other regular foods and beverages you consume also have sugar.

According to the AHA, the daily limit of sugar a person can consume is only 25g for women, and men shouldn’t have more than 36g. 

So, you don’t have to worry about this drink affecting your daily sugar intake, and you’ll have more room for sugar from healthier sources like fruits and vegetables instead.

That said, it’s still important to watch out for your daily sugar intake because too much sugar can bring about several health risks such as:

  • Acne
  • Weight gain
  • Heart disease
  • Diabetes
  • Cancer
  • Depression

To add on, the high levels of sugar in other energy drinks can cause you to feel more drained. Despite the good feeling you get from a sugar rush, it can actually disrupt your body’s regulation of glucose.

What happens is that overconsuming sugar causes your body to produce more insulin than it can handle which then causes your glucose levels to decrease. This is known as hypoglycemia, or also known as a sugar crash.

Zero Calories

Besides having no sugar, the C4 Energy drink is also calorie-free. It’s definitely good news if you’re trying to lose a few pounds. 

For reference, the ideal amount of calories that you can consume is between 2,000 – 2,500 calories a day, depending on your age, gender, height, and weight.

I think a non-caloric energy drink like C4 Energy will complement your active lifestyle. Whether you watch out for your calories or not, it’s always a good idea to stay fit and healthy to avoid health problems later on.

Eating right and exercising is highly beneficial not just to your physique but also to your mental health. So, if you haven’t made investments in your body, this is your sign!

Special Energy-Boosting Ingredients

There’s a reason why the C4 Energy drink is popular amongst athletes and gym rats. It’s mainly because a 16 fl.oz can of this drink contains 6.73g of Explosive Performance Energy Blend.

What’s inside this special blend, you ask?

In brief, the C4 Energy’s energy-boosting blend contains various ingredients that promote athletic performance, such as Citrulline MalateCamoSyn® Beta-AlanineBetaPower® Betaine AnhydrousN-Acetyl-L-Tyrosine, and Caffeine Anhydrous

Citrulline Malate (L-Citrulline) and CamoSyn® Beta-Alanine are amino acids, which your body naturally produces. Consuming them from other sources like energy drinks can help increase your physical performance and build lean muscles. 

On the other hand, Beta Anhydrous is a compound that breaks down harmful substances in your body to promote healthy liver hence, improving athletic performance. 

No wonder Betaine is a popular bodybuilding supplement that significantly improves hydration, stimulates water-based pumps and power.

The C4 Energy drink also contains tyrosine, an amino acid that improves mental alertness.

Experts found that this ingredient is beneficial for memory and thinking skills, even for people with ADHD. Tyrosine can also be a stress regulator, especially during mentally challenging situations.

The Caffeine Anhydrous in this drink is basically dehydrated seeds and coffee plant leaves. It’s more potent and concentrated than coffee since the caffeine goes through a dehydration process. The benefits of this ingredient include improving athletic performance and help with weight loss.

That said, I find that the performance energy blend in C4 Energy drinks to be beneficial for a more enhanced physical performance. It’s definitely a good choice of a pre-workout drink.

C4 Energy drink label
C4 on the go

Cons Of C4 Energy Drink

High Caffeine Content

There’s about 200mg of caffeine in a single 16 fl.oz can of C4 Energy drink, and having two cans of this drink will wipe out your entire daily limit of 400mg, as recommended by the FDA.

There’s no denying that caffeine is a great stimulant that can help you stay energized throughout the day and puts you in an overall good mood. 

In my opinion, 200mg of caffeine in a single serving is a little too much, although it’s still below the daily limit. I usually stay below 100mg because having more than that can trigger some nasty side effects.

While your body can handle a highly caffeinated drink like C4 Energy, it’s still best to be mindful of your daily caffeine intake, as consuming an excessive amount of caffeine can affect your mental and physical health. Thus, it can lead to adverse side effects such as:

  • Restlessness 
  • Jittery feeling
  • Insomnia
  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Rapid 
  • Palpitations
  • Dehydration
  • Anxiety
  • Dependency

It’s also worth noting that caffeine may cause you to feel tired, similar to sugar. Caffeine crashing is triggered when you consume too much caffeine than your body can handle.

But of course, if you have a high caffeine metabolism and only drink C4 Energy when you need an extra boost for your workout or during mentally draining situations, I think the caffeine content in this drink can be helpful.

My advice is to listen to your body and not go over your limits. It’s also best to avoid consuming highly caffeinated beverages at least 6 hours before bedtime because having enough sleep is still crucial for your health.

Artificial Sweeteners

To substitute the sweetness you get from sugar, the C4 Energy drink uses zero-calorie artificial sweeteners instead, namely, Sucralose and Acesulfame Potassium (Ace-K). These artificial sweeteners are about 200 – 600 times sweeter than regular sugar.

The European Food and Safety Authority (EFSA) believes that sucralose is effective in the regulation of sugar levels in your body, which is why most people with diabetes substitute this to table sugar.

However, it’s important to note that there’s still a lot that we have yet to discover about artificial sweeteners, especially their long-term effects. Some have even linked the use of sucralose to causing diarrhoea and nausea.

But since they’re FDA approved, and as long as you keep your consumption to a minimum, you shouldn’t worry much about the sweeteners in the C4 Energy drink.

If you’re interested to know more about Acesulfame Potassium, check out the video below:

How Long Does C4 Energy Drink Last In Your System?

The answer to this question depends ultimately on how well your body responds to the 200mg of caffeine in a 16 fl.oz can of C4 Energy drink.

The effects of caffeine usually take place within 15 – 30 minutes after consumption. It peaks after an hour and stays at this level for several hours for most people. 

For guidance, the 100mg of caffeine in C4 Energy will last around five to six hours in your system because of caffeine’s half-life nature. It’ll take another 12 hours to get rid of the remaining half.

If I were you, I would have C4 Energy at least 30 minutes before my workout session to get an energy boost, and I would avoid having this drink close to my bedtime.

What Happens If You Drink Too Much C4 Energy Drink?

Regularly consuming multiple cans of C4 Energy drink a day can lead to health problems due to its high caffeine content.

While the calorie and sugar-free nature of this drink is definitely a huge bonus, you need to keep in mind that a 16 fl.oz can of C4 Energy drink also contains 200mg of caffeine.

Hence, you’ll be going over the recommended limit if you have more than two cans of this drink a day. You’ll also be more prone to side effects if you’re sensitive to caffeine.

Besides health problems such as insomnia and anxiety, you’re most likely to fall into a caffeine overdose, which includes side effects such as:

  • Trouble breathing
  • Vomiting
  • Hallucinations
  • Confusion
  • Chest pain

That said, the safest and healthiest way to consume a C4 Energy drink is to have a maximum of two cans a day.

It’s even better if you stick to one can only and have other caffeinated beverages with lower caffeine content like herbal tea or coffee if you still need an energy boost.

Are C4 Energy Drinks Banned In Sports?

There’s no ban against C4 Energy drinks in sports. However, its pre-workout powdered product called Cellucor C4 Extreme does contain Synephrine HCL, a banned ingredient in sports.

American football players on the fiel
C4 Energy drink is completely safe for your next sport game

The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) has banned Synephrine HCL in sports products as this ingredient can cause athletes to edge over their opponents.

Furthermore, the FDA has also banned the use of Methylsynephrine in dietary supplements. That explains why the creators of Cellucor C4 Extreme decided to reformulate their product to meet these standards.

Thus, you can have your Cellucor C4 Extreme without any worry now, and as for C4 Energy drinks, it’s completely safe and not banned at all.


Overall, I think that C4 Energy Drinks aren’t bad for you as long as you consume them moderately.

Based on the analysis, a 16 fl.oz can of C4 Energy drink contains beneficial ingredients that can increase your performance while also being calorie and sugar-free. However, its high caffeine content of 200mg per serving can be worrying, but as long as you don’t have more than two cans a day, I think that much caffeine can definitely increase your energy levels.

But of course, if you have a low caffeine tolerance, the C4 Energy drink may not be suitable for you. Instead, it’s best to opt for energy drinks with lower caffeine content to avoid unnecessary side effects.

All in all, it’s crucial to read through the ingredients and nutrition facts of everything we consume. This way, you’ll know for sure what you’re feeding your body.

Other Articles

Skip to content