Is it permissible to have energy drinks? Is it permissible to drink them? What is the religious decree about them?

The Details of the Question
Is it permissible to have energy drinks? Is it permissible to drink them? What is the religious decree about them?
The Answer

Dear Brother / Sister,

It is permissible to have drinks containing caffeine. However, some scholars say it is better not to drink them since they are doubtful.

It is always better to avoid doubtful things. Furthermore, some Hanafi scholars say even coffee is haram. However, those fatwas were not accepted in general.  

When a Muslim drinks them, he is not regarded to have committed a haram. We cannot tell anybody not to drink them. It is not religiously haram. However, you cannot force a person who does not drink them to drink them.

Are drinks containing caffeine halal?

In Islam, all kinds of narcotics along with intoxicants are prohibited. For, they have the intoxicating property. 

The following is stated in a verse:

"O ye who believe! Intoxicants and gambling, (dedication of) stones, and (divination by) arrows, are an abomination― of Satan's handiwork: eschew such (abomination), that ye may prosper." (al-Maida 3/90)

The use of all kinds of liquid or solid intoxicants is generally prohibited in hadiths:

"Every drink that intoxicates is haram." (Bukhari, Wird, 81, Ashriba 4, 10; Muslim, Ashriba, 67-68);

"If a large amount of anything causes intoxication, a small amount of it is also prohibited."(Abu Davud, Ashriba, 5: Tirmidhi, Ashriba, 3).

In Islamic law, along with alcoholic drinks, all of the other substances that narcotize man and eliminate their ability to reason are regarded as haram and prohibited severely.

It is haram to eat any plant that kills man, eliminates his mind, poison the body or harm his health in any way. For instance, it is not permissible to eat the things that are produced from plants like opium and that eliminate one's mind by narcotizing him.

The following information is given about "caffeine", which is included among the substances that stimulate and cause addiction in the books studied at food engineering departments of chemistry faculties of various universities and the articles written by experts:

Caffeine is an alkaloid. There are many alkaloid compounds that are known. They are widely found in plants like coffee, tea and cocoa. It is important in the drinking of coffee but it does not affect its taste very much. Caffeine, which is produced from plants, is used in pharmaceutical industry, drinks and soft alcoholic drinks. There is a certain amount of caffeine in cola, too.   

Caffeine makes people mentally alert, increases blood circulation, heats the body, eliminates tiredness and eases digestion. Too much caffeine affects nervous system negatively.

Caffeine exists in tea and coffee, too. If something harms when it is used a lot, it is necessary not to use it in excessive amounts. It is haram to eat so much as to harm the body, too. Some foods are useful to some patients.

It is not appropriate to use the things that are known to harm the body. If drinking much coffee and tea harms a person, he needs to drink a little; if even a little amount harms him, he must not drink it at all.

In conclusion, drinks containing caffeine, caffeine in tea, coffee and cola are permissible to drink as long as they do not harm one's health. For, it is not haram to use a little amount of something permissible whose excessive amount is harmful if it does not harm the body. Even very little amounts of alcoholic drinks are haram even if they do not harm. 

In this context, energy drinks that contain caffeine are not haram. However, they should be drunk by taking into account the effect of them on the health of a person. It is not appropriate to drink so much of them as to harm one's health.

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