Energy Drinks and Your Heart: Know the Risks

Energy-Drinks

Study Exposes The Exact Effect of Energy Drinks On The Heart

Energy Drinks have been found to cause irreversible damage to tooth enamel and detrimentally affect the contraction of the heart. According to an ongoing study reported at the Radiological Society of North America (RSNA), the popular drinks consumed by millions not only increase contractility of the heart, but they may cause long-term health risks.

At the annual Chicago meeting Jonas Dorner MD from the University of Bonn’s cardiovascular imaging section, who is working on the study, said that until now, no-one had worked out the exact effects of energy drinks on heart functioning.

Citing concerns over possible adverse side effects of energy drinks on heart function, especially in adolescents and young adults, Dorner said there was “little or no regulation” of the US market.

A recent study published in the May/June 2012 issue of General Dentistry, the peer-reviewed clinical journal of the Academy of General Dentistry, found that an alarming increase in the consumption of sports and energy drinks, especially among adolescents, is causing irreversible damage to teeth–specifically, the high acidity levels in the drinks erode tooth enamel, the glossy outer layer of the tooth.

3 Times Higher Caffeine

Noting that caffeine levels in energy drinks are up to three times higher than in other caffeinated drinks including coffee or cola, Dorner said known side-effects included a rapid heart rate, palpitations, a rise in blood pressure “and in the most severe cases, seizures or sudden death”.

Manufactured by the chemical industry, synthetic caffeine is big business in many drinks that contain the drug.

NATURAL CAFFEINE: Natural, real caffeine comes from various plant species. Caffeine content within these plants will vary throughout the year depending on weather, soil conditions, time of year harvested, etc. So caffeine content is impossible and impractical to determine for labeling on products like coffee or tea. They have constantly changing amounts. Naturally caffeinated products will not have caffeine as an ingredient or measurement on the label.

SYNTHETIC CAFFEINE: The first sign the caffeine in your drink is synthetic is it is listed on the label & has an exact measurement. This is the cheapest & most common added caffeine source. The processes & compounds may vary between chemical companies, but they are all disturbing.

FORTIFIED CAFFEINE: Still usually synthetic, caffeine can be obtained from the coffee decaffeination industry, although it is substantially pricier & rarely used. This will also note caffeine on the label with a measurement. Caffeine supplies from this industry use methylene chloride, formaldehyde or ethyl acetone for it’s removal. There is no such thing as removing the caffeine with just water.

Significantly Higher Peak Strain

Dorner and colleagues used cardiac magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to measure the effect of energy drink consumption on heart function in 18 healthy volunteers — 15 men and three women with an average age of 27.5 years.

Each subject was given one cardiac MRI before consuming an energy drink containing taurine (400mg/100ml) and caffeine (32mg/100ml), and another one hour after consumption.

The second MRI scan showed significantly higher peak strain and peak systolic strain rates (measures of ‘contractility’ or level of heart contraction) in the heart’s left ventricle.

This receives oxygenated blood from the lungs and pumps it to the aorta, which then distributes it throughout the rest of the body.

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The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors/source and do not necessarily reflect the position of CSGLOBE or its staff.

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