Ingredients of Red Bull

What is Red Bull

Before talking about the ingredients of Red Bull, let’s go in deep into its background story.

Red Bull Original
Red Bull Original

Red Bull is an energy drink sold by an Austrian company named Red Bull GmbH. This company has the highest market share of energy drinks and it has sold 7.9 billion cans in 2020. According to Forbes, Red Bull GmbH’s market value in 2020 was 20 billion USD.

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This popular drink is consumed by everyone from soccer moms to the world’s renowned athletes. Apart from that this energy boost is popular among blue-collar workers, busy professionals, college students, travellers, and drivers who proceed long drives.

Red Bull GmbH Company
Red Bull GmbH Company

Further, due to its gained popularity, Red Bull become part of many cocktail recipes such as Jumping Jack Flash, Vodka Red Bull, and Jagerbomb.


In 1982, a wealthy Austrian entrepreneur named Dietrich Mateschitz came to Thailand while working for a German Toothpaste company called ‘Blandex’.

Dietrich Mateschitz
Dietrich Mateschitz

He arrived in Thailand with severe jet lag and tried a Thailand traditional drink to get away from the brain fog he had encountered with. He got a real energy boost from that drink and thought to find out more about the drink. This drink was named Krating Daeng and it was manufactured in 1976 by Chaleo Yoovidhya the owner of T.C. Pharmaceutical.

Krating Daeng
Krating Daeng

Young Chaleo Yoovidhya was born poor and came to Bangkok to work in a pharmaceutical company. Later he started his own medical business. When that time imported energy drinks brands like Lipovitan-D dominated the local market. These brands only targeted elite customers. He came up with the idea to make an energy drink to give a physical boost to the working class who undergo long working hours regularly.

Later he found Krating Daeng which is sold in small glass bottles with a label showing two gaurs charging at each other in front of a yellow circle. At that time the urbanization of Thailand had taken place and it also had given a good push to his drink.

Chaleo Yoovidhya
Chaleo Yoovidhya

Krating Daeng gained popularity as a national drink when Chaleo began sponsoring Muay Thai events, the country’s most popular martial arts. It took over its competitors quickly by starting to export to Taiwan and South Korea.

Old poster of Krating Daeng
Old poster of Krating Daeng

In Thai, Daeng means Red and Krating means Gaur or Indian Bison. Dietrich Mateschitz took this idea and build up a partnership with Chaleo to modify the ingredients of this drink to suit Westerners’ tastes. In 1984 they founded Red Bull GmbH in Fuschl Am See, Austria and they launched the Red Bull energy drinks in 1987. From 1992 onwards Red Bull distributes its products worldwide starting from the neighbouring countries.

Red Bull Logo
Red Bull Logo

But the flavouring used for Red Bull is still produced in Bangkok. The Red Bull company’s initial English version slogan was “No Red Bull, no wings” and, the Krating Daeng’s slogan was “Target is for hit”. Now the slogan of Red Bull has changed to “Red Bull gives you wings”.

The Red Bull GmbH Company

Each partner invested USD 500,000.00 to build up the company. Yoovidhya and Mateschitz held 49% shares by each and the remaining 2% was given to Yoovidhya’s son, Chalerm but it was agreed that Mateschitz would run the company.

Chalerm Yoovidhya
Chalerm Yoovidhya

Red Bull has created a Brand Myth” through proprietary extreme sports events series such as Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series, Red Bull Air Race, Red Bull Crashed Ice, Red Bull Racing, and many more stunt, parachuting, mountain biking, and space diving competitions rather than following a traditional approach to mass marketing.

Eco-Friendly Production Practices of the Company

Red Bull GmbH uses eco-friendly production and distribution techniques to keep the CO2 emission and material wastage minimum. These unique techniques are;

  • Manufactured and distributed all energy drinks in 100% aluminium cans which can be recycled multiple times. Because recycling a can requires 95% less energy than manufacturing a new one.
  • Cans are lightweight and can be stored in a compact. Can require 40% less space than glass bottles and 30% less space than PET plastic.
  • The company follows wall-to-wall production. Cans are manufactured and filled in the same site and it saves more than 6,641 tons of CO2 emission per year.
  • The site acquires 8% of its energy requirement through renewable resources.
  • The company uses Eco-Coolers which require 45% less energy than conventional refrigerators. And also, this has reduced the emission of greenhouse gasses.
  • The company has prioritized and promoted product transportation by ships and rails rather than by heavy motor vehicles like lorries and trucks to reduce CO2 emissions.
Product distribution Plan of Red Bull GmbH
Product Distribution Plan of Red Bull GmbH

Ingredients of Red Bull

These are the main ingredients found in Red Bulls which are sold in western countries. But the number of ingredients can be changed due to the region of the country and the vNersion of the Red Bull.

No. 1 – Carbonated Water | Main Ingredients of Red Bull

Water is the main ingredient of Red Bull. Red Bull factory takes their freshwater requirement from the springs of the Alps Mountain range in Austria and Switzerland which is nearby the production site.

No. 2 – Simple Sugars (Sucrose & Glucose) 11g per 100ml

There are sugar-free Red Bull versions like Red Bull Sugar-Free and Red Bull Zero which uses artificial sweeteners like Acesulfame K and Aspartame. This sugar is sourced from sugar beets but some publications say that the sugar for Red Bulls is artificially made. This Red Bull’s sugar level can be compared to other food & beverages as follows;

  • Ice Cream 16g per 100ml
  • Grape Juice 12-18g per 100ml
  • Bubble Tea 12g per 100ml
  • Soft Drinks 10-12g per 100ml
  • Orange Juice 6-11g per 100ml
  • Apple Juice 7-10g per 100ml

No. 3 – Taurine (2-Aminoethanesulfonic Acid) 1g per 250ml

Taurine is an amino acid that naturally occurs in the human body and includes in the daily diet. This amino acid is involved in a wide range of biological processes. It is an antioxidant that helps to move minerals through the body system and generate nerve impulses. Taurine is found in muscles, the brain, the heart, and blood in high concentrations. Normally 70g of Taurine is present in a body of 70kg man.

No. 4 – Caffeine 80mg per 250ml | Main Ingredients of Red Bull

Caffeine stimulates the cognitive functions of the human body like learning, thinking, reasoning, remembering, problem-solving, decision-making, and attention. Caffeine blocks Adenosine, a sleep-promoting brain chemical, and helps the body to release Adrenaline. This is the world’s most widely used Psychoactive substance. This caffeine content can be compared to other beverages which are made from plants naturally having caffeine.

  • Filter Coffee 113mg per 250ml
  • Instant Coffee 79mg per 250ml
  • Black Tea 57mg per 250ml
  • Cola 28mg per 250ml
  • Dark Chocolate 25mg per 250ml
  • Cocoa Beverage 6mg per 250ml

No. 5 – Sodium Bicarbonate (Baking Soda, NaHCO3)

This substance delays fatigue and improves body performance by removing H+ ions from the body through the creation of a metabolic alkalosis state.

No. 6 – Magnesium Carbonate

This helps our body to form proteins, to regulating blood pressure, to regulating blood sugar, and regulate nerve and muscle functions. Adults should consume this essential mineral between 310mg to 420mg per day.

No. 7 – Citric Acid | Main Ingredients of Red Bull

This is a preservative that helps to enhance the flavour and shelf life.

No. 8 – Vitamin B12

A water-soluble vitamin that helps the body to form red blood cells for oxygen utilization.

No. 9 – Vitamin B6 (Pyridoxine HCL)

A water-soluble vitamin helps the body to form red blood cells and to use oxygen. It boosts mood and energy levels.

No. 10 – Vitamin B5 (D-Pantothenol/ Pantothenic Acid)

A water-soluble vitamin helps to improve mood, boost metabolism, and to turn fat into energy. Vitamin B5 deficiency leads to mental and physical health problems including acne, fatigue, muscle cramps, and apathy.

No. 11 – Vitamin B3 (Niacinamide)

This water-soluble vitamin helps the body with energy formation and use.

No. 12 – Glucuronolactone

This is a naturally occurring carbohydrate found in connective tissues and plant gums. It stimulates our body with a mild anti-depressant effect and helps to improve memory and concentration. This also has detoxifying qualities and can help to remove waste from the body.

No.13 – Inositol

This is a mood booster that helps the brain to use serotonin. This chemical compound can be found in many foods such as oranges, cantaloupes, and high-fibre nuts and beans.

No. 14 – Flavours & Colors

Every version of Red Bull includes natural and artificial colours and flavours.

Does Red Bull include Bull Sperm or Urine?

No. Despite the rumours, Red Bull does not include bull semen, bull urine, Chinese artificial stimulants, or any ingredients from the testicles of the bull. These false enticing urban legends and stories might be raised due to these facts.

  • The word “Taurine” takes its name from the Greek word for “Bull”.
  • Taurine was first found and isolated from the intestine of the Ox Bile.

Does Red Bull contain any doping substances?

Red Bull does not contain any doping substances.

Label of Red Bull Original
Label of Red Bull Original

Does drinking Red Bull legal for athletes?

Yes. There are no illegal substances included.

Difference between Red Bull and Krating Daeng

Krating Daeng, the initial version of Red Bull is a completely different drink from the Red Bull. Those similarities and differences are;

  • Both drinks bear the same logo.
  • Krating Daeng comes in a small dark colour glass bottle whereas Red Bull comes in a tall and skinny blue can.
  • In some Asian countries like China, Krating Daeng has been marketed in a short and stubby gold colour can under the name Red Bull.

    Krating Daeng in the Gold Color Can
    Krating Daeng in the Gold Color Can
  • But the Krating Daeng is not distributed to regions beyond Asia due to trademark infringements.
  • Krating Daeng is a non-carbonated drink but the Red Bull is carbonated.
  • The taste of these two products also has a significant difference. Red Bull has less sugar and more Caffeine than the Krating Daeng. Therefore, Krating Daeng tastes sweeter than Red Bull.
    • List of ingredients in Krating Daeng 250ml bottle
      1. Calories – 160
      2. Carbohydrates – 44g
      3. Sugar – 42g
      4. Caffeine – 50mg
      5. Protein – 1g
      6. Taurine – 1g
      7. B3, B5, B6, and B12 Vitamins
      8. There are small amounts of Lysine, Choline Bitrate, Inositol, Citric Acid, Sodium Benzoate, Flavours, and colouring.
    • Krating Daeng is almost exclusively sold in Southeast Asia.
    • 250ml bottle of Krating Deang usually costs around 10 Baht (30 USD Cents) in Thailand but the price of a Red Bull 250ml can in the USA is about 2.37USD.

Product Variations

Krating Daeng comes only in a few flavours. They are;

  1. Original 250ml
  2. Original 150ml
  3. Sugar-Free 250ml

But Red Bull comes under multiple variations and flavours. Mainly they can be divided into four categories. They are

  1. Red Bull Original
  2. Red Bull Zero (No Calories)
  3. Red Bull Sugar-Free
  4. Red Bull Editions
Red Bull Zero
Red Bull Zero

These Red Bull editions are coming with different ingredients and in different colours and flavours. The marketed availability of those editions is subject to the country and the region.

Health Effects

According to the United States Food and Drug Administration (U.S FDA), the recommended daily dosage of caffeine is 400mg for an average healthy adult. Drinking 250ml of Red Bull or a Krating Daeng will acquire a quarter of the daily usage. But the Red Bull is not recommended for pregnant women and people with heart diseases or high blood pressure. However, some studies have indicated that this drink is not more dangerous than a couple of cups of coffee for people having those health issues.

Recommended caffeine dosage for adolescents aged between 12 to 19 is 100mg. Hence, drinking two 250ml cans of Red Bull will overdose caffeine in this age group. Apart from that, people who are caffeine sensitive should avoid Red Bull and Krating Daeng entirely.

According to the American Heart Association (AHA), the recommended daily dosage of sugar is 36g for an average man and 25g for a woman. Therefore, drinking a 250ml Red Bull will bring you to the margin of the guideline, and drinking a 250ml bottle of Krating Daeng will exceed the recommended limits. So, these two drinks may have some potential side effects if consumed in excess.

The severity of the side effects will largely depend on the genetic structure. If we are allergic or have a low tolerance for some of the ingredients in this drink, it might have a possibility that we would experience some devastating side effects.

All the possible side effects can be categorized into the following;

  • Minor side effects
    1. Weight gain
    2. Restlessness (Feeling the requirement of constant movements/ unable to calm mind)
    3. Fatigue
    4. Sugar Crashes (Sudden drops in energy levels/ Hypoglycemia)
    5. Increased heart rate
    6. Increased blood pressure
  • Series side effects
    1. Dehydration
    2. Poor dental health
    3. Kidney stones
    4. Allergies
    5. Diabetes (Type 2)

Excessive consumption of caffeine may cause the following minor diseases due to its stimulant properties.

  1. Euphoria (A feeling or state of intense excitement and happiness)
  2. Agitation (A sense of inner tension and restlessness)
  3. Anxiety (A feeling of unease, such as worry or fear)
  4. Irritability (A feeling of agitation)
  5. Insomnia (Regular sleeping problems)
  6. Nervousness (A common feeling brought about by the body’s stress response)
  7. Sleeplessness
  8. Increased Urination
  9. Arrhythmia (abnormal heart rhythms)
  10. Dyspepsia (A pain or an uncomfortable feeling in the upper middle part of the stomach)
  11. Nausea (A feeling of sickness with an inclination to vomit)
  12. Vomiting
  13. Hallucinations (Sensory experiences that appear real but are created by our mind)
  14. Dizziness (A sensation of spinning around and losing balance)
  15. Seizures (A burst of uncomfortable electric activity between brain cells)

Other than that, some researchers have proved that drinking Red Bull may increase high-risk behaviours, especially when combined with alcohol.

Is Sugar-Free Red Bull healthier?

Red Bull Sugar Free
Red Bull Sugar-Free

Sugar-free Red Bull is lower in calories and sugar. But it contains the same amount of caffeine as regular Red Bull. Therefore, it still includes the same amount of side effects occurring due to caffeine. Apart from that, some researchers have proved that the artificial sweeteners used in Sugar-Free Red Bull (Aspartame, Acesulfame K) have the potential to increase Type 2 Diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

Is Red Bull safe?

Red Bull is available in more than 170 countries, including every state of the European Union. Health authorities across the world have indicated that Red Bull is safe to consume.

Nutritional Information

Red Bull (250ml)

  1. Calories                       – 112
  2. Protein                         – 1.2g
  3. Fat                               – 0g
  4. Carbs                           – 27g
  5. Sugar                           – 27g
  6. Caffeine                      – 80mg
  7. Taurine                        – 1g

Krating Daeng (100ml)

  1. Energy                         – 406kJ
  2. Calories                       – 96
  3. Caffeine                      – 20mg
  4. Taurine                        – 400mg
  5. Total Fat                     – 0g
  6. Saturated Fat               – 0g
  7. Total Carbs                 – 23g
  8. Sugar                           – 23g
  9. Protein                         – 600mg
  10. Salt                              – 300mg

Is Red Bull gluten-free, wheat-free, lactose-free, and dairy-free?

Red Bull is gluten-free, wheat-free, lactose-free, and dairy-free.

Is Red Bull suitable for vegetarians?

Yes. Because Red Bull uses only non-animal ingredients.

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