Taurine, Energy Drinks and Bull Sperm: 10 Things to Know

taurine in red bull

(Updated: Nov 2015, Published: July 2012) 

If you have read the ingredient list of your favorite energy drink, you may have noticed an ingredient by the name of taurine. Here are 10 things you need to know:

1. What it is it? Taurine is an amino acid. Amino acids are the building blocks of proteins. Taurine is present extensively in animal tissue.

2. Where does it come from? Taurine is found in meat and fish. It is also found in human tissue, our large intestine, and human breast milk.

3. Taurine was first isolated from ox bile, and thus its name is derived from the Latin ‘taurus,’ meaning ‘ox’ or ‘bull’.

4. Nutrition. A significant amount of taurine can help our:

  • Skeletal Muscles
  • Blood Pressure
  • Cardiovascular Function
  • The Retina
  • The Central Nervous System

5. Toxicity. The European Food Safety Authority published a study in 2003 that found “no adverse effects for up to 1,000 mg of taurine per kilogram of body weight per day.” Like most things, too much of anything can be bad for your body, including taurine.

6. Taurine is added to the following products:

  • Energy Drinks
  • Infant Formula (specifically, for premature babies)
  • Contact Lens Solutions
  • Cosmetics

7. The urban myth that taurine is derived from bull sperm is false. Taurine is present in bull sperm, but that is not the source of taurine in your beverages.  Taurine, like many other additives in today’s foods,  is synthesized in a lab.

8. Taurine Sourcing. No animals are harmed to bring you taurine. These days, it is manufactured by chemical synthesis in food ingredient processing plants. In China alone there are 40 taurine manufacturers!

9. Is Red Bull good for me? No. Red Bulls contain an extremely high amount of sugar.  The taurine in an energy drink isn’t enough to have a positive effect on your health.

10. Have you figured out how Red Bull energy drink got its name yet?

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  • http://www.capturedbyangus.com/ Michael Angus

    How do you know all Taurine in energy drinks is synthesized and not from animals? I haven’t been able to find any information to back this online.

    • http://bebrainfit.com/ Deane Alban

      I’ve copied this from Red Bull’s website: “Ingredients such as taurine, caffeine and vitamins are synthetically produced to ensure high and consistent quality.” You can find that under their Q&A section.

    • solarpoweredtoaster

      Well how do you know that taurine in energy drinks is from animals? Do you have any evidence backing that up? Geez, some people believe whatever they hear on the internet.

      • Ludwing Moreno

        How do you know it’s not dumb ass bitch


    Taurine is also found in some food products for humans and animals…just the other day, I found it listed as an ingredient in my dog’s food.

  • http://robfisher.net/blog Rob Fisher

    You missed out question 11: so is Red Bull bad for me? A: No. Enjoy it, don’t drink too much of it, and stop worrying so much. All that worrying about things is worse for your health than the occasional sugary drink.

    • shortylog

      Occasional ??? Some assholes drink drink this crap everyday !!!

  • Danny Hunter Jones

    the taurine in energy drinks is not synthesised that is a lie that people are told so sales don’t drop coz apparently everyone that drinks these is Vegan and would stop buying them, it’s not true the only uses for synthesised taurine is medication and also animal products, things like drops for cat’s eyes since they cannot produce it naturally hence why they more often than not go blind

    • Kylie Owings-Black

      You are an idiot. You are wrong on every point you argued here. Everyone that drinks RB is vegan? I will be sure to tell the people I know that they should stop eating meat. The only uses are medication related? Damn, I better tell my body to stop using it for neurological function. Cats “more often than not go blind”? WTF planet are you from? I have had more cats in my life than you apparently have brain cells and not one had gone blind. It must be glorious to go through life being such a simpleton.

      • May

        Love it!!!! You told him..lol I read outload to my husband we both cracked up laughing!!!

    • solarpoweredtoaster

      You sir, are an idiot.

  • http://larce-dagrate.wix.com/larcedagrate#! LARCE DAGRATE

    i read that “taurine” come from an extract of “bull bile” thats animal feces fro the shallow minded