I need my (cola) fix.

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The Reaper
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I need my (cola) fix.

Postby The Reaper » Wed May 20, 2009 3:06 am UTC

http://www.physorg.com/news161950959.html

Excessive cola consumption can lead to super-sized muscle problems warn doctors
May 19th, 2009

Doctors have issued a warning about excessive cola consumption after noticing an increase in the number of patients suffering from muscle problems, according to the June issue of IJCP, the International Journal of Clinical Practice.

"We are consuming more soft drinks than ever before and a number of health issues have already been identified including tooth problems, bone demineralisation and the development of metabolic syndrome and diabetes" says Dr Moses Elisaf from the Department of Internal Medicine at the University of Ioannina, Greece.

"Evidence is increasing to suggest that excessive cola consumption can also lead to hypokalaemia, in which the blood potassium levels fall, causing an adverse effect
on vital muscle functions."

A research review carried out by Dr Elisaf and his colleagues has shown that symptoms can range from mild weakness to profound paralysis. Luckily all the patients studied made a rapid and full recovery after they stopped drinking cola and took oral or intravenous potassium.

The case studies looked at patients whose consumption ranged from two to nine litres of cola a day.

They included two pregnant women who were admitted with low potassium levels.

The first, a 21 year-old woman, was consuming up to three litres of cola a day and complained of fatigue, appetite loss and persistent vomiting. An electrocardiagram also revealed she had a heart blockage, while blood tests showed she had low potassium levels.

The second also had low potassium levels and was suffering from increasing muscular weakness. It turned out she had been drinking up to seven litres of cola a day for the last 10 months.

In a commentary on the paper, Dr Clifford Packer from the Louis Stokes Cleveland VA Medical Centre in Ohio relates the strange case of the ostrich farmer who returned from the Australian outback with muscle weakness. He had been drinking four litres of cola a day for the last three years and drank up to 10 litres a day when he was in the outback, causing a rapid reduction in his potassium levels.

He also relates a puzzling case he saw in his own clinical practice, which was solved when the patient turned up at his office with a two-litre bottle of cola in the basket of his electric scooter. It turned out he routinely drank up to four litres a day. He refused to stop drinking cola, but halved his consumption and the muscle weakness he had been complaining of improved.

In 2007 the worldwide annual consumption of soft drinks reached 552 billion litres, the equivalent of just under 83 litres per person per year, and this is projected to increase to 95 litres per person per year by 2012. However the figure has already reached an average of 212 litres per person per year in the United States.

It appears that hypokalaemia can be caused by excessive consumption of three of the most common ingredients in cola drinks - glucose, fructose and caffeine.

"The individual role of each of these ingredients in the pathophysiology of cola-induced hypokalaemia has not been determined and may vary in different patients" says Dr Elisaf.

"However in most of the cases we looked at for our review, caffeine intoxication was thought to play the most important role. This has been borne out by case studies that focus on other products that contain high levels of caffeine but no glucose or fructose.

"Despite this, caffeine free cola products can also cause hypokalaemia because the fructose they contain can cause diarrhoea."

The authors argue that in an era when portion sizes are becoming bigger and bigger, the excessive consumption of cola products has real public health implications.

"Although most patients recover when they stop drinking cola and take potassium supplements, cola-induced chronic hypokalaemia can make them more susceptible to potentially fatal complications, such as an irregular heartbeat" says Dr Elisaf.

"In addition, excessive consumption of any kind of cola can lead to a range of health problems including fatigue, loss of productivity and muscular symptoms that vary from mild weakness to profound paralysis.

"We believe that further studies are needed to establish how much is too much when it comes to the daily consumption of cola drinks."

Dr Packer agrees that the problem needs to be addressed.

"Cola drinks need to be added to the physician's checklist of drugs and substances that can cause hypokalaemia" he says.

"And the soft drink industry needs to promote safe and moderate use of its products for all age groups, reduce serving sizes and pay heed to the rising call for healthier drinks."

More information: Cola-induced hypokalaemia: pathophysiological mechanisms and clinical implications. Tsimihodimos. IJCP, International Journal of Clinical Practice. 63.6, 900-902. (June 2009). Commentary: Cola-induced hypokalaemia: a super-sized problem. Packer C. IJCP, International Journal of Clinical Practice. 63.6, 900-902. (June 2009).


Seriously, 9 liters of soda a day? I don't drink that much anything, much less soda. I'd be pissing like a racehorse.

Bananas would help with the potassium problems.

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Re: I need my (cola) fix.

Postby TheSkyMovesSideways » Wed May 20, 2009 4:11 am UTC

How I read that stupid headline: :roll:
Excessive cola consumption can lead to super-sized muscle
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Re: I need my (cola) fix.

Postby Silas » Wed May 20, 2009 4:20 am UTC

So drinking almost nothing but coke for weeks or months on end is bad for you?

And is there any visible connection to cola, instead of other sorts of soda? My (caffeinated) root beer habit isn't going to do me much better than if it were Coke, is it?
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Re: I need my (cola) fix.

Postby Marbas » Wed May 20, 2009 4:35 am UTC

Wait it's caused by the sugars? I thought it would have been caused by the large amount of sodium and not getting any potassium.

That doesn't seem right to me. But I suck at physiology, so what do I know.

Edit: Wait what? 3 liters a day? What the hell is wrong with you lady? Three liters of anything a day is probably going to make you sick. Except for water, and even then I'm not so sure.
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Re: I need my (cola) fix.

Postby Dibley » Wed May 20, 2009 4:37 am UTC

I think part of the problem is the phosphoric acid, which isn't found in root beer.

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Re: I need my (cola) fix.

Postby netcrusher88 » Wed May 20, 2009 5:00 am UTC

Marbas wrote:Edit: Wait what? 3 liters a day? What the hell is wrong with you lady? Three liters of anything a day is probably going to make you sick. Except for water, and even then I'm not so sure.

They usually say you're supposed to have 8 cups (2 quarts, half a gallon, 1.9 litres) of water per day. That being said, it's a minimum - I've known a lot of people who would carry around a US gallon milk jug (3.8 litres) and refill it at least twice daily. Notably they were athletes most of the time, but it's really hard to drink enough water to injure yourself as long as you don't drink it unreasonably fast.

3 litres of soda is not unthinkable. When I was in college I'd easily drink about a litre and a half a day between soda fountains and the ubiquitous vending machines stocked with 20 oz Pepsi products, and I don't think it was unheard for me to go well over 3 litres. Uncommon enough I guess. I drank a lot of water too, though.
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Re: I need my (cola) fix.

Postby The Reaper » Wed May 20, 2009 5:08 am UTC

I've heard of people drowning from drinking too much water (military recommends a max of 12 quarts daily), but I've never actually seen it. I drink 1 or 2 two liters throughout the course of a boring day where i have nothing to do but drink soda and mess around on the computer, but i mean, seriously, 9 liters? every day? that's like..... $4.50 of soda.... thats insane... oh wait... hmmm.... :\ I think I see the problem here. 9 liters of soda costs less than a meal.... I have stumbled upon a new diet. the Coke and Banana diet. you fill yourself up with drinking coke all day, the caffiene helps burn off body fat, the soda keeps u full so you dont eat as much, and the banana keeps you alive! Watch the pounds fall right off!

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Re: I need my (cola) fix.

Postby Malice » Wed May 20, 2009 5:17 am UTC

The Reaper wrote:I have stumbled upon a new diet. the Coke and Banana diet. you fill yourself up with drinking coke all day, the caffiene helps burn off body fat, the soda keeps u full so you dont eat as much, and the banana keeps you alive! Watch the pounds fall right off!


Except that your body will adjust to the caffiene so that you're normal with it, sluggish without it, so you're not burning anything off; and you're rapidly gaining weight because of all the sugars in the soda. Watch the pounds pile on.
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Re: I need my (cola) fix.

Postby Freakish » Wed May 20, 2009 5:19 am UTC

Drinking a lot of pop is incredibly easy, I'm trying to quit/cut down since I'm addicted to it (read: my only source of caffeine).
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Re: I need my (cola) fix.

Postby The Reaper » Wed May 20, 2009 5:25 am UTC

Malice wrote:
The Reaper wrote:I have stumbled upon a new diet. the Coke and Banana diet. you fill yourself up with drinking coke all day, the caffiene helps burn off body fat, the soda keeps u full so you dont eat as much, and the banana keeps you alive! Watch the pounds fall right off!


Except that your body will adjust to the caffiene so that you're normal with it, sluggish without it, so you're not burning anything off; and you're rapidly gaining weight because of all the sugars in the soda. Watch the pounds pile on.

It's a quick fix, not a long term thing. Obviously you'd starve to death on this diet, what with the lack of nutrients. -_-

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Re: I need my (cola) fix.

Postby zealo » Wed May 20, 2009 5:55 am UTC

anyone drinking that much coke is probably mixing it with whiskey
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Re: I need my (cola) fix.

Postby Silas » Wed May 20, 2009 7:02 am UTC

The Reaper wrote:I drink 1 or 2 two liters throughout the course of a boring day where i have nothing to do but drink soda and mess around on the computer, but i mean, seriously, 9 liters? every day? that's like..... $4.50 of soda.... thats insane... oh wait... hmmm.... :\

My figures (based on cans, not 2-liters) come to more like seven or eight dollars a day. It sounds like it's about equivalent to a heavy cigarette or beer habit. That's a short case (12) of beer or a pack and a half of tobacco a day or about a fifth of rotgut- a lot, but not really unheard of. (Well, drinking a daily bottle of vodka isn't common that I know of, but the beer or tobacco aren't really shocking)
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Re: I need my (cola) fix.

Postby The Reaper » Wed May 20, 2009 7:05 am UTC

Silas wrote:
The Reaper wrote:I drink 1 or 2 two liters throughout the course of a boring day where i have nothing to do but drink soda and mess around on the computer, but i mean, seriously, 9 liters? every day? that's like..... $4.50 of soda.... thats insane... oh wait... hmmm.... :\

My figures (based on cans, not 2-liters) come to more like seven or eight dollars a day. It sounds like it's about equivalent to a heavy cigarette or beer habit. That's a short case (12) of beer or a pack and a half of tobacco a day or about a fifth of rotgut- a lot, but not really unheard of. (Well, drinking a daily bottle of vodka isn't common that I know of, but the beer or tobacco aren't really shocking)

9 liters of beer a day would be a short liver. 9 liters of vodka a day would be an immunity to alcohol, and possibly a new species of man. o_O

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Re: I need my (cola) fix.

Postby Gelsamel » Wed May 20, 2009 7:45 am UTC

netcrusher88 wrote:
Marbas wrote:Edit: Wait what? 3 liters a day? What the hell is wrong with you lady? Three liters of anything a day is probably going to make you sick. Except for water, and even then I'm not so sure.

They usually say you're supposed to have 8 cups (2 quarts, half a gallon, 1.9 litres) of water per day. That being said, it's a minimum - I've known a lot of people who would carry around a US gallon milk jug (3.8 litres) and refill it at least twice daily. Notably they were athletes most of the time, but it's really hard to drink enough water to injure yourself as long as you don't drink it unreasonably fast.

3 litres of soda is not unthinkable. When I was in college I'd easily drink about a litre and a half a day between soda fountains and the ubiquitous vending machines stocked with 20 oz Pepsi products, and I don't think it was unheard for me to go well over 3 litres. Uncommon enough I guess. I drank a lot of water too, though.


It's not a minimum...

Also, if you have blood pH/electrolyte problems then too much water would definitely cause a problem. Even if it's over a longer period of time.
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Re: I need my (cola) fix.

Postby Marbas » Thu May 21, 2009 3:53 am UTC

3 litres of soda is not unthinkable. When I was in college I'd easily drink about a litre and a half a day between soda fountains and the ubiquitous vending machines stocked with 20 oz Pepsi products, and I don't think it was unheard for me to go well over 3 litres.


That's...a lot to me. I am in college now, and a 2 liter bottle of lemonade(what I drink where most people would drink soda) lasts me five days.
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Re: I need my (cola) fix.

Postby Jesse » Thu May 21, 2009 12:17 pm UTC

I reckon I drink about 1.5 litres of diet cola a day, maximum. That is a lot less than I used to, what with drinking water at work now.


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