Ghost Energy Drink: Cans That Rebel Against the Status Quo (200mg Caffeine)

Launched in 2020, updated in 2021 with an improved formula, and relentlessly pursuing exciting new flavors and collaborations, Ghost Energy Drink has taken the beverage world by storm. This article explains the flavors, ingredient profile, backstory, and more.

Ghost Energy PricePlow

Ghost Energy is now here, and it’s phenomenal!

Ghost Energy Drink: More Energy, More Life

Ghost Energy has some key features that you just won’t find in other energy drinks:

  • 200 milligrams of naturally-sourced caffeine
  • Fully transparent label that includes:
    • 1 gram of L-Carnitine
    • 1 gram of Taurine
    • Feel-good NeuroFactor (coffee fruit extract)
    • A choline source (currently Alpha-GPC) and an ingredient absorption blend
    • High-Quality vitamins like the methylated forms of Vitamin B6 and B12 alongside Vitamin C
  • Epic flavor collaborations with Swedish Fish, Sour Warheads, Sour Patch Kids, and Bubblicious
  • Special-edition releases with music festivals and athletes

All of this for the same price as most energy drinks — yet with tons more efficacy thanks to the formula. It’s no surprise why Ghost is everywhere.

We have everything you need to know about Ghost Energy Drink below. But first, sign up for our Ghost news alerts to get update notifications, and check PricePlow’s coupon-powered prices if you’re buying online:

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Let’s jump right into the flavors currently available online, then get into the Ghost Energy ingredients, backstory, distribution, and other things worth knowing:

Ghost Energy Drink Flavors

Ghost was the first company to introduce licensed flavors to the supplement industry, and did the same with energy drinks:

Ghost Energy Swedish Fish

You can always count on Ghost Energy to have some epic flavors, including the Swedish Fish collaboration.

    Ghost Energy Drink Ingredients

    Each can of Ghost Energy clocks in at 16 fl oz, which is the standard size for the majority of energy drinks on the market.

    • L-Carnitine L-Tartrate (as Carnipure) – 1000mg

      Ghost Energy Bubblicious Cotton Candy Ingredients

      The Ghost Energy Ingredient Label, as shown in the recent Bubblicious Cotton Candy release from Summer 2023

      The first primary ingredient in Ghost Energy is 1000mg of Carnipure L-Carnitine L-Tartrate, abbreviated to “LCLT”.

      L-carnitine is most well known for its role in fatty acid metabolism.[1] In order for the free fatty acids to become oxidized within the mitochondria to produce energy in the form of ATP (adenosine triphosphate), they need some assistance. L-carnitine serves as a fatty acid transporter and is crucial for creating energy from fats through beta-oxidation.[1] This is the primary reason why you’ll see some form of L-carnitine in many weight loss supplements.

      Ghost is specifically using CarniPure from Lonza, as opposed to other forms because it’s stable in liquid form for an extended period of time. From the initial run of Ghost Energy, the brand quickly discovered that acetyl-L-carnitine (ALCAR) was not stable in liquid, so they wisely changed to LCLT.

    • Taurine – 1000mg

      The next ingredient in Ghost Energy is one of our favorites: taurine. We specifically like this ingredient because of all the health and performance benefits it offers.

      Taurine is a sulfur-containing amino acid that’s involved in several physiological processes. Studies show that taurine supplementation may improve insulin sensitivity, muscle force production, muscular endurance, glycogen re-synthesis, recovery, and time to exhaustion.[2-4] Although Ghost Energy isn’t technically a pre-workout supplement, it could definitely be used as one with this formula!

      A meta-analysis published in 2018 revealed that taurine is a very underrated endurance booster, and works on the first time when taking a gram or more — which is what we have here![3] The researchers attributed this ergogenic effect to taurine’s role in calcium handling.[2,3] Taurine is capable of increasing intramuscular calcium levels, resulting in improved excitation-coupling of the muscle fibers. Calcium is crucial for muscle contraction, thus low levels can lead to some serious issues.[2,3]

      But since this is an energy drink, it’s important to note that studies also show that the combination of taurine and caffeine can boost mental energy, clarity, and focus.[4] Taurine’s cognitive and performance-enhancing benefits have been shown with dosages ranging between 1-6 grams,[3] so Ghost Energy is giving you enough to reap many of the positive effects taurine has to offer!

    • Natural Caffeine (from Coffee (Coffea spp) Bean) – 200mg

      What’s an energy drink without some form of caffeine?!

      Most of Ghost’s supplements feature natural caffeine, and Ghost Energy wisely follows suit. There’s no denying that caffeine is extremely effective in boosting physical and mental energy,[5-7] which is exactly what Ghost Energy was designed to do.

      Ghost Energy

      If you haven’t tried Ghost Energy yet, you’re missing out!

      So what’s the point of choosing natural caffeine from coffee bean extract opposed to the hard-hitting, fasting-acting synthetic caffeine anhydrous we see in most supplements? Ghost wants to make sure that you get a smooth and steady rise in energy over time, therefore using natural caffeine is a better option.

      Anecdotally, natural caffeine lowers the chance of experiencing a crash in energy and it may decrease the risk of experiencing adverse effects, including rapid heart rate, jitters, anxiety, and increased blood pressure. Additionally, synthetically-sourced caffeine comes from some nasty processes (with precursors like urea), and Ghost doesn’t want any of that residue in their cans.

      200 milligrams is the energy drink sweet spot

      Nowadays, many people are used to taking more than 200 milligrams at a time (such as for workouts), we believe this is a perfect dose for an energy drink. The majority of new energy drinks fall between 200-300mg of caffeine, so Ghost is right in line with their competitors – and 200 milligrams sells the best to the most audiences.

      How does caffeine work?

      Mechanistically, caffeine is capable of crossing the blood-brain barrier, which enables it to have a profound effect on the central nervous system (CNS).[5] It helps block adenosine from binding to its receptors — this is important because adenosine is causes a downregulation in CNS activity, which leads to fatigue. In addition, caffeine also inhibits phosphodiesterase from breaking down cAMP, a secondary messenger system involved in energy production.[5]

      Simply put, with caffeine, you get less adenosine binding and less phosphodiesterase, leading to more energy!

      Overall, the 200 milligrams of natural caffeine and everything else in this formula should be the perfect amount to get you going without feeling stimmed out of your mind!

    • Alpha-GPC (Alpha-Glyceryl Phosphoryl Choline 50%) – 150mg

      Ghost Energy includes Alpha-GPC, a source of choline, to boost overall acetylcholine production!

      Ghost Energy Tropical Mango V2

      Ghost Energy Tropical Mango has an incredible look and feel

      Alpha-GPC is a popular choline donor because it’s readily absorbed by the body and is highly bioavailable. It serves as a precursor to acetylcholine – a neurotransmitter responsible for many physiological functions like memory andd muscle contractions. Alpha-GPC is well-known for its cognitive-boosting properties.

      Several studies have shown that alpha-GPC supplementation can boost cognitive performance and even power output.[8-10] It’s well-established that stressful situations like physical exercise or mentally-taxing activities can lead to a depletion of choline levels,[11] so it’s great to have an added choline source. This is especially true if you don’t eat any eggs, since eggs are rich natural choline sources.

    • NeuroFactor Coffee (Coffea arabica) Fruit Extract – 100mg

      The next ingredient in Ghost Energy is a very underrated cognitive booster known as NeuroFactor.

      This is a trademarked ingredient made from coffee fruit extract that’s known for its ability to boost mental energy, cognition, and focus. But it also does something most other ingredients can’t – enhancing levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in the brain![12]

      BDNF Levels Graph

      Blood levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) are significantly elevated by whole coffee fruit extract!

      BDNF is a neurotrophic factor that promotes survival of neurons and expresses neuroprotective, anti-inflammatory, and immunomodulatory properties.[12] Research shows that BDNF activates the growth of new neurons via neurogenesis.[12]

      Low levels of BDNF are linked to an increased risk of developing neurodegenerative diseases,[12,13] so it’s great to find ways to keep them high. Beyond offering neuroprotective effects, BDNF plays a crucial role in energy balance,[12,13] which is likely one of the main reasons it’s included in Ghost Energy. Higher levels of BDNF have been associated with improved learning capability, mood, and memory.[12,13]

      In summary, Neurofactor is an incredibly unique ingredient and we’ve never seen it included in any energy drink’s formula.

    • AstraGin (10:1 Astragalus membranaceus and 50:1 panax notoginseng) Root extracts – 25mg

      Ghost is a proponent of AstraGin because of its patented ability to enhance absorption and bioavailability of some other ingredients.[14-18] The theory here is that they’re getting more out of each ingredient by improving gut health and absorption.

      Ghost Energy Orange Cream

      Ghost Energy’s last flavor of 2021 was Orange Cream!

      AstraGin consists of a combination of two root extracts – astragalus mebranaceus and panax notoginseng.[14-18] Internal studies demonstrated that AstraGin can potentially increase the absorption of a variety of nutrients, especially amino acids. It accomplishes this by activating specific transporter molecules within the small intestine, allowing a greater proportion of nutrients to be absorbed.

      In addition, AstraGin can promotes better gut health by decreasing inflammation.[14] This is an ingredient that Ghost fought to keep in the formula when they began their major distribution partnership discussed below.

    • Added Vitamins

      Beyond the ingredients we’re going to discuss down below, Ghost Energy also contains a wide variety of vitamins, including vitamin C, niacin, folate, vitamin B6, biotin, vitamin B12, and pantothenic acid.

      Vitamin C is known for being an antioxidant powerhouse, but it also offers several other health benefits ranging from immunity to reductions in muscle damage after training. B vitamins do not directly increase energy, but they can indirectly boost energy by helping your body metabolize carbohydrates, fats, and proteins. This is why B vitamins are common additions in energy drinks — Ghost, however, chose to use high-quality forms like methylcobalamin and P5P, which are more easily used by the body..

    Not a “pre-workout supplement”… but can be used as one

    Ghost Legend V3

    On May 17, 2023, Ghost Lifestyle launched the third version of the Ghost Legend pre-workout, and this time, it brings more value and more international compliance.

    It’s important to note that Ghost Energy was not formulated to be an RTD (ready-to-drink) pre-workout supplement, although it could be used in that way. The ingredients are meant to boost mental and physical energy, increase focus, and clarity, but if you looking for pre-workout supplements, look at Ghost Legend (250mg caffeine), Ghost Legend ALL OUT (400mg caffeine), or Ghost PUMP (caffeine-free). Of these, Ghost PUMP would be the one to take alongside Ghost Energy – never mix caffeineated products!

    Ghost Energy Nutrition Facts

    Ghost Energy is low calorie, with no added sugar, unlike much of its competition. Note that some of these stats may change per the flavor:

    • Calories: 5

    • Carbohydrates: 1g (0g sugar)

    • Fat: 0g

    • Protein: 0g

    Ghost Energy Drink Review

    Below is our original product review — it’s only been improved since then:

    This area is reserved for Team PricePlow's upcoming Product Review video.

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    The backstory of Ghost Energy in 2020

    Co-owners of active lifestyle nutrition brand Ghost Lifestyle, Dan Lourenco and Ryan Hughes, made a bold claim that 2020 would be their biggest year to that point, and despite the nonsense everyone was subjected to that year, they were still right. A big reason was the launch of Ghost Energy.

    Ghost Lifestyle Logo

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    Less than halfway into 2020, Ghost had released about a dozen different products, flavors, and collaborations (see them all on our Ghost news page). Highlights include Ghost Greens, Ghost Glow, and Ghost Whey Nutter Butter. Looking back, those were all successful, but nothing like Ghost Energy.

    We first saw it in season 5, episode 32 of “Building the Brand” episode titled Game Changer, where co-founders Dan and Ryan were in the office about to sign contracts for their “next big project”. Despite the phrase being overused in this industry, this product definitely was a game-changer.

    Ghost Brings Authentic Flavors To Energy Drinks

    Ghost is known for transparent labels, creative graphic designs, epic sneakers, and creating supplements that can be used beyond the walls of the gym. However, what they’re most known for are authentic flavor collaborations.

    “I am proud of what we’ve done, but even more excited for what we haven’t done yet.”

    — Dan Lourenco, Co-owner and Founder of Ghost

    Very early on, Ghost gained the trust of major brands outside of the fitness industry, with the first one being Warheads sour candy. After that massive achievement, Ghost was hungry for more – they went on to partner with Sour Patch Kids, Swedish Fish, Welch’s Grape Juice, Chips Ahoy!, Nutter Butter, Sonic, and Bubblicious.

    As time has gone on, they’ve brought many of those same flavor systems to Ghost Energy!

    The updates in Ghost Energy V2

    In December of 2020, Ghost announced that they were making some changes to Energy in their Building the Brand YouTube series. You can watch it in Season 6 Episode 27 titled We Aren’t Stopping Here. The big key here was the switch to LCLT as the carnitine source, as discussed above.

    These changes were also discussed in PricePlow Podcast Episode #035 with Dan and Ryan of Ghost:

    Subscribe to PricePlow on YouTube!

    Exclusive Partnership With Anheuser-Busch

    Taking things to the next level, Ghost exclusively partnered with Anheuser-Busch to manufacture and distribute all of their ready to drink products. This was a very big announcement, and helped propel Ghost Energy into stores across America.

    Ghost Energy Warheads

    The first flavor collab was none other than WARHEADS Sour Watermelon, just like they had with the Legend pre-workout.

    We even heard that Anheuser-Busch reached out to Ghost because they quickly noticed how Ghost was bringing legitimacy to the supplement industry with all of the authentic flavor collaborations. AB likely wanted to do the same thing with bevergaes, so what better company to partner with than Ghost.

    We’ll see where this partnership goes as 2023 unfolds with AB is suffering their catastrophic consumer backlash, but it’s likely that the distribution aspect of these energy drinks will remain unscathed.

    Ghost Energy Has Taken Over the Energy Market

    Ghost did massive things in the sports supplement industry in a relatively short period of time, and certainly aren’t done yet. They conquered energy drinks just as much as they did with supplements, and did it in a similar fashion — with transparent labels, clinically-studied ingredients, and never-before-seen flavors / collaborations.

    The launch of Ghost Energy is their biggest accomplishment yet, and we can’t wait to see what else they have in store for the future. The team always wants each year to be better than the last, but how can they possibly top what they’ve done here?

    Be on the lookout, because they generally find a way to make it happen. As always, make sure to subscribe down below to get notified when more products, flavors, and deals go live from Ghost.

    GHOST Energy Drink – Deals and Price Drop Alerts

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    Disclosure: PricePlow relies on pricing from stores with which we have a business relationship. We work hard to keep pricing current, but you may find a better offer.

    Posts are sponsored in part by the retailers and/or brands listed on this page.

    Note: This article was last updated on September 5, 2023 with the latest news of Ghost’s Sour Pink Lemonade flavor.

    About the Author: Mike Roberto

    Mike Roberto

    Mike Roberto is a research scientist and water sports athlete who founded PricePlow. He is an n=1 diet experimenter with extensive experience in supplementation and dietary modification, whose personal expertise stems from several experiments done on himself while sharing lab tests.

    Mike's goal is to bridge the gap between nutritional research scientists and non-academics who seek to better their health in a system that has catastrophically failed the public. Mike is currently experimenting with a low Vitamin A diet.

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