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Cola Consumption Can Lead To Muscle Problems

timothy posted more than 5 years ago | from the but-your-lifting-arm's-doing-fine dept.

Medicine 420

wjousts writes "As I'm sure many Slashdot readers live almost exclusively on cola drinks, a new warning from doctors: '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. ... '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.' And sorry, diet colas aren't any better."

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Cool story bro (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28032205)

I drink mountain dew instead.

Re:Cool story bro (5, Informative)

FredFredrickson (1177871) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032295)

According to the article:

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

So first off, Yes, Diet makes a difference- lacking two of the ingredients. And Diet Caffeine free is just fine. Additionally, these three inrgedients are not cola exclusive. Coffee (from dunks with liquid sugar), Root Beer, and other drinks, I'm sure, could find yourself in the same dillema.

I'm annoyed at this doomsday article (not just TFS, but TFA) which is totally shock value, and one paragraph of truth.

But then again, I suppose I should get used to that.

Re:Cool story bro (-1, Flamebait)

Jurily (900488) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032477)

So first off, Yes, Diet makes a difference- lacking two of the ingredients. And Diet Caffeine free is just fine. Additionally, these three inrgedients are not cola exclusive. Coffee (from dunks with liquid sugar), Root Beer, and other drinks, I'm sure, could find yourself in the same dillema.

How about water and lemonade (the real one, with only lemon and sugar)?

Hint: if it's manufactured, it's bad for you.

Re:Cool story bro (2, Interesting)

Knara (9377) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032487)

Generalize much?

Re:Cool story bro (0, Troll)

Jurily (900488) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032743)

Generalize much?

If I say I do, will that make you stop thinking about all the chemi^Wexperience enhancing substances your body did not have to handle during creation/evolution you drink each day?

Re:Cool story bro (4, Insightful)

retchdog (1319261) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032945)

Refined sugar is just as new to our bodies, on the evolutionary time scale, as high fructose corn syrup. Even the volumes associated with the modern concept of fruit juice are new: 12 oz. of orange juice is considered reasonable to drink, even though it's equivalent to eating six oranges in a few minutes. Lots more sugar, and much more frequently, than we had during what I'm sure was a pre-technological paradise. Oh yeah, even "natural" juices often have the vitamins stripped out and added back in after pasteurization. Little difference between orange juice and cola, really. If you like one over the other fine, but it's close to a wash nutritionally.

There's nothing wrong with living your life by various rules of thumb, because it's impossible to get into all of the details in one lifetime. But insisting on the dogmatic conclusions of your heuristics, is sheer insanity.

Re:Cool story bro (4, Interesting)

JWSmythe (446288) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032839)

    Actually, it's right.

    I'll preface this with... INAHN (I'm not a health nut), I'm just very aware of the bad things that I consume. I'm smoking a cigarette and drinking a tall glass of cold soda while I'm writing this. :)

    "natural" products, that aren't manufactured, but just bottled, are ok, but rather rare in most stores.

    "manufactured" products usually contain refined sugars, preservatives, artificial colors, etc, etc. The're all bad for you.

    The human body isn't designed to handle refined sugars very well. It does ok with raw sugar, but only in reasonable quantities. If they used raw sugar in the quantity that shows up in most sodas, it's bad for you. There was a recent study (and review of historical data) that showed the instances of diabetes were virtually nil compared to now. The major contributor? refined sugars.

    Caffeine free soda has more bad stuff in it, just not caffeine.

    Diet or sugar free sodas have artificial sweeteners that are cancer causing (among other things). Myself, I can't drink any diet soda. Even just a sip, and I'll have a migraine for the next 8 hours. I've been very unhappy during road trips, if/when I stop at a drive through and they hand me a diet soda instead of the regular one I ordered. One sip, and now I have 8 hours of driving where it feels my brain is going to explode.

   

Re:Cool story bro (5, Insightful)

Brian Gordon (987471) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032963)

Arsenic is natural. Tobacco is natural. Multivitamins are artificial.

Re:Cool story bro (5, Insightful)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 5 years ago | (#28033105)

Diet or sugar free sodas have artificial sweeteners that are cancer causing (among other things).

That's a myth [snopes.com] . It's supported by the fact that most diet sodas used to contain saccharine, which is a sweetener that has been shown to cause cancer in laboratory rats if fed to them in sufficiently large quantities. As a result of these (possibly spurious) studies, most soft drink companies switched their artificial sweetener to aspartame ("Equal") many years ago (in the 1980s), which, as you can see by my link, has definitely not been shown by any studies to cause cancer (or lupus, or diabetes mellitus, or any other such nonsense). Virtually all of the evidence of aspartame causing ailments, including headaches, is entirely anecodotal and unsupported by scientific study.

Re:Cool story bro (4, Informative)

JWSmythe (446288) | more than 5 years ago | (#28033271)

    Well, I know the migraines are easily reproducible for me. When I didn't know what the cause was, I was really confused. I'd drink whatever was put in front of me. Now, I don't drink diet sodas or tequila. Anything else is fair game. :)

    I did sample testing, but I've also accidentally fallen into blind tests. I've gone to friends house, and they've poured me a drink. I didn't know until my head hurt, so I'd ask "was that a diet drink?" Nothing else that I've ever consumed has ever given me a headache quickly. Alcohol does it too, but that's usually from over consumption, and the headache comes later. :) That's easily mitigated by the consumption of large quantities of fluids before the headache comes on.

Re:Cool story bro (5, Funny)

wjousts (1529427) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032481)

And Diet Caffeine free is just fine.

I wouldn't be as bold as to suggest that anything about Diet Caffeine free coke is "fine".

Re:Cool story bro (5, Funny)

Jarik C-Bol (894741) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032981)

caffeine free diet soda. for when you are low on artificial coloring.

Re:Cool story bro (4, Insightful)

Lord Ender (156273) | more than 5 years ago | (#28033065)

Oh Jesus, Internet. Not this again. Can't we all agree that the science indicates aspartame is either harmless or barely measurably harmful, and certainly less harmful than the obesity one gets from consuming large amounts of sugar?

Re:Cool story bro (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28033427)

No.

Your assumption that "diet" soda helps with obesity is statistically false.

And it tastes really bad.

If "diet" does not really help with being fat, would you really choose aspartame over sugar.

Swallowing tooth paste is possibly harmless too. I just wouldn't do it every day, just in case.

Re:Cool story bro (1)

Endo13 (1000782) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032575)

Given the choice between regular cola and diet, I'll take option c: none of the above. Diet tastes like garbage and gives me an upset stomach.

Re:Cool story bro (2, Informative)

averner (1341263) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032867)

That depends on what you consider "fine". Artificial sweeteners have been shown to have a more obesity-causing effect in lab rats than sugar (due to their disruption of hunger, metabolism, etc), so diet drinks are probably not even "diet" drinks. I haven't heard of such an experiment performed on humans yet but I wouldn't take my chances.

I suggest water (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28032887)

Are you trying to suggest that aspartame (or whatever the newest artificial sweetener is) is healthy?

The truth is:
  soda is bad for you and makes you fat.
  "diet" soda is bad for you and makes you fat (correlation). (it does not make you lose weight according to any study).
  "diet" soda uses various artificial sweeteners, of which the long term health consequences are not known.

Re:Cool story bro (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28032983)

Well, the artificial sweteners will fuck you up even worse.

The thing that's really causing mineral imbalances is the phosphoric acid used to carbonate.

Re:Cool story bro (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28033141)

Have you TASTED sugar free caffeine free Coke?

Fucking vile stuff!

Not to mention the aspartame in diet drinks...

If by Root Beer you mean Barque's... (1)

HiggsBison (678319) | more than 5 years ago | (#28033519)

Coffee (from dunks with liquid sugar), Root Beer, and other drinks, I'm sure, could find yourself in the same dillema.

When it comes to Root Beer, I think only Barque's (A fine product of the Coca-Cola Company) insists on adding caffeine.

Not gonna help you, bro (1)

spun (1352) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032323)

FTFA:

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

The dew is even worse for you, bro. The article makes no mention of diet colas, which do not contain fructose or glucose, so I doubt they are as bad as sugar sodas.

Re:Not gonna help you, bro (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28032397)

What's the difference. Diet (sic!) drinks use aspartam as a substitute for sugar. Well, for anyone who has IQ higer than typical showel or brick, I must not to explain, that this chemical-ultratoxin kills faster than bullet.

Re:Not gonna help you, bro (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28032473)

What's the difference. Diet (sic!) drinks use aspartam as a substitute for sugar. Well, for anyone who has IQ higer than typical showel or brick, I must not to explain, that this chemical-ultratoxin kills faster than bullet.

You must not to speak good.

Re:Not gonna help you, bro (3, Funny)

whiledo (1515553) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032571)

chemical-ultratoxin kills faster than bullet

That would explain the piles of dead bodies that I see stacked up next to every soda fountain and convenience store on a daily basis, what with it being faster than a bullet and all.

Okay, I just can't help it - I really hope you are a non-native English speaker. Otherwise, I'm afraid I'm going to have to rewrite your post:

What's the difference. Diet (sic!) drinks use aspartam (sic) as a substitute for sugar. Well, for anyone who has (sic) IQ higer (sic) than typical showel (sic) or (sic) brick, I must (sic) not to (sic) explain, (sic) that this chemical-ultratoxin kills faster than (sic) bullet.

If you are a native English speaker, you have the IQ of a showel.

Re:Not gonna help you, bro (2, Funny)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032971)

I'll have to rewrite your post:

If you are a native English speaker, you have the IQ of a (sic) showel.

Re:Not gonna help you, bro (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28033091)

Makes way more sense if you read it in a Russian accent. :p

Re:Not gonna help you, bro (5, Informative)

retchdog (1319261) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032579)

Yes, a very very slow bullet.

I'm not sure what a "showel" is, but: There is no convincing evidence that moderate consumption of aspartame causes harm. The evidence was all from "accelerated failure studies", where they gave mice extreme doses and extrapolated back to normal consumption. Well, that's not bad for a first approximation, and diet drinks had a cancer warning label for a while. However, the studies were refuted early on and now time has borne out that the studies were incorrect. There's apparently a threshold effect, and under a certain dosage (which is quite high), it's perfectly safe.

If you want to worry about something, worry about brominated vegetable oil [wikipedia.org] , which is used in Mt. Dew and other citrus sodas to disperse the citrus oils uniformly in the drink. Or, if you really want to worry about something which actually has a non-negligible chance of killing/disabling you, look both ways before crossing the street and always wear your seatbelt; and (a distant second) don't smoke.

Re:Not gonna help you, bro (1)

retchdog (1319261) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032609)

Oh yeah, obviously the above doesn't apply to people with phenylketonuria.

Re:Not gonna help you, bro (3, Interesting)

Ironica (124657) | more than 5 years ago | (#28033061)

Yes, a very very slow bullet.

I'm not sure what a "showel" is, but: There is no convincing evidence that moderate consumption of aspartame causes harm. The evidence was all from "accelerated failure studies", where they gave mice extreme doses and extrapolated back to normal consumption. Well, that's not bad for a first approximation, and diet drinks had a cancer warning label for a while. However, the studies were refuted early on and now time has borne out that the studies were incorrect. There's apparently a threshold effect, and under a certain dosage (which is quite high), it's perfectly safe.

For very small values of "perfect."

Artificial sweeteners may not be the certain cancer death they were once thought to be. However, there's still a few issues with them:

* Asparatame breaks down into asparatase and methyl alcohol at higher temperatures, such as those used in baking, and during certain chemical processes, such as the digestive process. Methyl alcohol is toxic to humans.

* Sucralose interacts badly with certain medications, including those taken by cancer patients to prevent recurrences.

* ALL sweeteners, regardless of their source or chemical composition, trigger insulin production in the same way that sugar does. This is a reflexive response, where the body ramps up insulin production in response to the *taste* of sweet, not waiting until blood sugar actually goes up. This results in lower blood sugar levels in response to non-nutritive sweeteners, which induces hunger and sugar/carb cravings. This is why switching to diet soda from regular causes weight *gain* rather than loss in often-replicated studies.

Re:Not gonna help you, bro (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28033409)

ALL sweeteners, regardless of their source or chemical composition, trigger insulin production in the same way that sugar does.

I've never heard of this, and can't find anything about it with a quick glance at Google. Citation?

Re:Not gonna help you, bro (5, Interesting)

Scrameustache (459504) | more than 5 years ago | (#28033153)

There is no convincing evidence that moderate consumption of aspartame causes harm.

September 30, 1980-- The Public Board of Inquiry concludes NutraSweet should not be approved pending further investigations of brain tumors in animals. The board states it "has not been presented with proof of reasonable certainty that aspartame is safe for use as a food additive."

January 1981-- Donald Rumsfeld, CEO of Searle, states in a sales meeting that he is going to make a big push to get aspartame approved within the year. Rumsfeld says he will use his political pull in Washington, rather than scientific means, to make sure it gets approved.

January 21, 1981-- Ronald Reagan is sworn in as President of the United States. Reagan's transition team, which includes Donald Rumsfeld, CEO of G. D. Searle, hand picks Dr. Arthur Hull Hayes Jr. to be the new FDA Commissioner.

March, 1981-- An FDA commissioner's panel is established to review issues raised by the Public Board of Inquiry.

May 19, 1981-- Three of six in-house FDA scientists who were responsible for reviewing the brain tumor issues, Dr. Robert Condon, Dr. Satya Dubey, and Dr. Douglas Park, advise against approval of NutraSweet, stating on the record that the Searle tests are unreliable and not adequate to determine the safety of aspartame [rense.com] .

July 15, 1981-- In one of his first official acts, Dr. Arthur Hayes Jr., the new FDA commissioner, overrules the Public Board of Inquiry, ignores the recommendations of his own internal FDA team and approves NutraSweet for dry products.

Shit (4, Funny)

sexconker (1179573) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032211)

Define "excessive", please.

Re:Shit (5, Informative)

Cryogenic Specter (702059) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032247)

According to the article, the people were drinking 3 to 7 LITERS a day. That is a lot.

Re:Shit (4, Interesting)

adisakp (705706) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032347)

According to the article, the people were drinking 3 to 7 LITERS a day. That is a lot.

If you drank 7 liters of pure water a day you would probably suffer from low potassium as a result of electrolytes being flushed our in your urine. The US-RDA for water is 2 liters of water (8 cups) per day.

Not to mention, eating 2-3 bananas over the course of the day would probably correct the problem.

Re:Shit (1)

Jarik C-Bol (894741) | more than 5 years ago | (#28033031)

this reminds me of the guy that got cancer from microwave popcorn. because he ate like 3 or 4 bags a day, and with each bag, he would open it, place his face to it, and inhale the popcorn/butter fumes repeatedly.

Re:Shit (2, Informative)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 5 years ago | (#28033127)

Drinking 7 L of water a day would cause hypokalemia, but the hyponatremia (low sodium) would become a severe problem long before the reduced potassium.

The interesting thing about the cola problem is that the hypokalemia is more severe than the hyponatremia, suggesting that there is an additional factor other than overhydration.

Best guess is caffeine, as per the article. It's already well documented that high doses of caffeine cause hypokalemia, even when the caffeine is administered in pill form without abnormal amounts of water.

Re:Shit (2, Insightful)

42forty-two42 (532340) | more than 5 years ago | (#28033435)

Could it just be that since cola typically contains some sodium, the hyponatremia doesn't occur, and all that's left is hypokalemia?

Acids! Phosphoric acid and carbonic acid. (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28033221)

Are not good for your teeth and bones, drinking tons will probably screw up your whole body's PH levels having all kinds of ill effects.

Re:Shit (1)

l00sr (266426) | more than 5 years ago | (#28033263)

Hand in your geek card immediately. Give it here.

Re:Shit (2, Informative)

xkenny13 (309849) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032273)

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

I'm good. :-)

Crap (4, Funny)

Archangel Michael (180766) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032341)

I fear for Abby (NCIS).

Re:Crap (1)

Chabo (880571) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032495)

Gibbs gives her one (large) cup every time he comes by, which is probably no more than once a day. Assuming a 32oz. cup, she's still under 2 liters.

Re:Crap (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28032497)

Don't.
She easily does 10+ liters.

Re:Shit (1)

KingPin27 (1290730) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032649)

WTF!!! WHO DRINKS 9 litres of frakking cola a day!

Re:Shit (2, Insightful)

Culture20 (968837) | more than 5 years ago | (#28033041)

Who drinks 9 liters of any liquid a day? No wonder other side effects were vomiting and diarrhea.

Re:Shit (1)

sexconker (1179573) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032361)

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

OH NEVERMIND LOL JESUS WTF PEOPLE

Re:Shit (1)

nih (411096) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032375)

um ok.
going beyond the usual, necessary, or proper limit or degree; characterized by excess: excessive

Re:Shit (1)

wjousts (1529427) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032559)

From the BBC article on the same study [bbc.co.uk] :

They tell of the curious case of an Australian ostrich farmer who needed emergency care for lung paralysis after drinking 4-10 litres of cola a day.

Another example included a pregnant woman who regularly consumed up to three litres a day for the last six years and complained of tiredness, appetite loss and persistent vomiting.

A heart trace revealed she had an irregular heartbeat, probably caused by her low blood potassium levels.

Once she stopped drinking so much cola, she made a full and uneventful recovery.

So, yeah, excessive, even by my standards.

This stuff is b-a-n-a-n-a-s (5, Funny)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032251)

'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.'

Bananas contain lots of potassium.

Solution is obvious: drink all the cola you want, just make sure to supplement with banana ice cream. Added advantage of calcium and magnesium in the ice cream (also necessary for proper muscle function).

This post brought to you by Dole-omite and Benn & Gerry's.

Re:This stuff is b-a-n-a-n-a-s (2, Insightful)

Joce640k (829181) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032287)

Came here to say this.

The problem is lack of potassium, not excess of cola.

Solution: Go get some potassium.

Re:This stuff is b-a-n-a-n-a-s (4, Insightful)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032377)

From a physiological perspective, though, the problem is not a lack of potassium. That is a symptom. While it requires treatment, the underlying cause also should be treated

The problem is probably comprised of two main factors: caffeine intoxication and fructose-related diarrhea.

Re:This stuff is b-a-n-a-n-a-s (2, Interesting)

retchdog (1319261) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032689)

2 liters of cola has about 220mg of caffeine. Twenty ounces of reasonably strong black coffee (e.g. starbucks) has a bit over 400mg, and many people drink a few cups a day.

If the problem with cola were due to the caffeine, we'd have found the problem already in coffee drinkers who have already been studied to hell and back by people who'd just love to ban yet another enjoyable chemical.

No, as mentioned above the "problem" is probably that the sheer volume of cola flushes out potassium, and maybe the sugar accelerates metabolism or something.

Re:This stuff is b-a-n-a-n-a-s (4, Informative)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 5 years ago | (#28033057)

Hypokalemia is a documented side effect of caffeine intoxication. We have discovered this same problem in coffee drinkers, if you read the literature, you'd see for yourself.

Please note the "excessive" volumes referred to in TFA are on the order of 4+ (or up to 10+) L per day. That's like 2+ to 5+ pots of strong coffee a day in terms of caffeine content.

This is probably exacerbated by the "flushing" of electrolytes via diarrhea caused by high-volume fructose consumption.

Please. Know what you're talking about, or at least RTFA, before you try to make a counter-argument.

Overhydration can cause hypokalemia via excess elimination as well, but that becomes a problem long after hyponatremia becomes a severe problem.

Re:This stuff is b-a-n-a-n-a-s (1)

retchdog (1319261) | more than 5 years ago | (#28033297)

Fair enough. I usually don't bother with the /. article, and even my prestigious institutional affiliation doesn't give me access to the good articles on the subject (randomized trials, &c.) although the abstracts seem quite significant.

How do life science people get anything done but negotiating access to research?

Re:This stuff is b-a-n-a-n-a-s (4, Funny)

Moblaster (521614) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032351)

Too late. A certain extremely large software company has already patented the banana ice cream Coke float (as well as a number of variations involve diet and Pepsi applications) in order to provide its programmers a permanent competitive advantage.

Re:This stuff is b-a-n-a-n-a-s (1)

Sponge Bath (413667) | more than 5 years ago | (#28033007)

Bananas contain lots of potassium.

According to this [health.gov] you need 4,700mg/day of potassium even without the effects of too much soda. At 422mg per banana, that's 11.14 bananas per day.

Am I missing something? It seems you would have to eat a freaking huge amount of any of the listed foods to get your daily amount.

Re:This stuff is b-a-n-a-n-a-s (1)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 5 years ago | (#28033181)

Am I missing something? It seems you would have to eat a freaking huge amount of any of the listed foods to get your daily amount

Well, the people TFA refers to are having fricking huge amounts of cola, why not fricking huge amounts of bananas? Switch from banana ice cream to a banana split sundae between each glass of cola.

8 L of cola
3 *large* glasses of cola per 2L bottle.
So 12 glasses of cola.
Which means 11 bananas if I skip the banana split after the last glass of cola.

My calculations work fine, I'm sticking to my original plan, except I'm switching to banana splits instead of banana-flavored ice cream.

Re:This stuff is b-a-n-a-n-a-s (1)

Ironica (124657) | more than 5 years ago | (#28033287)

Bananas contain lots of potassium.

There's about 422 mg potassium [usda.gov] in a medium banana. The RDA [nutrientfacts.com] is 3500 mg. There are a whole lot of foods [usda.gov] with a whole lot more potassium than bananas.

Not sure how bananas got the rep for being potassium-rich. I guess they've got more potassium than anything else in the nutrient department, but they're really not that high in potassium.

Dew (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28032255)

Good thing I live on Mountain Dew...I would hate to have muscle problems!

Knew it, somehow. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28032267)

Ah Ha! Now I know the reason why I never liked cola drinks. Sorry for the rest of you, that may have to give it up.

Go figure (1)

Cryogenic Specter (702059) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032283)

I figured out that cola was bad for you when I heard of the school science experiment where you put old teeth (baby teeth or animal teeth) in cola for a couple of days and let them disintegrate!

Re:Go figure (1)

EdZ (755139) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032357)

If you're gargling your cola for several days before swallowing, then you'd have a problem. Thank goodness your stomach acids, much stronger than the Phosphoric acid in cola, do not cause any problems unless your stomach springs a leak.

Re:Go figure (0, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28032359)

I think Mythbusters disproved that one a few seasons ago. (also disproved dissolving a nail)

Re:Go figure (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28032395)

I don't know, because I actually tried that and nothing happened.

Re:Go figure (3, Insightful)

vux984 (928602) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032623)

I figured out that cola was bad for you when I heard of the school science experiment where you put old teeth (baby teeth or animal teeth) in cola for a couple of days and let them disintegrate!

I figured out fresh fruit was bad for you when I heard of the school science experiment where you put some fruit on a dish, and a couple days later its covered in toxic molds.

Unless you wander around with a mouthful of cola in your mouth for days at a time, your conclusion is about as absurd as mine is.

Now I'm not arguing cola is good for you, but the experiment you are referring to is irrelevant. After all, the body normally contains far stronger acids than mere cola.

Re:Go figure (2, Insightful)

tompaulco (629533) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032847)

There are plenty of other old wives tales telling how bad soda is for you, such as the suggetsion of using it for removing rusty lug nuts.
Of course, plain old tap water can be substituted for soda in most of these old wives tales, and the result is the same.

Licorice also causes excretion of potassium (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28032299)

So don't eat licorice along with your colas.

This study sponsored by 7-Up - The Uncola! (1)

RevWaldo (1186281) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032331)

Just mix 'em together and you're set.

Re:This study sponsored by 7-Up - The Uncola! (5, Funny)

Chabo (880571) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032409)

But if you mix cola and uncola, they annihilate each other, producing huge amounts of pure energy. Be careful!

Re:This study sponsored by 7-Up - The Uncola! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28032787)

No,no! You are thinking of the new 7-UP, the ANTI-cola. My best friend's cousin, who works at one of their bottling plants up in Alaska, told him that once someone crossed the bottling streams and the explosion was registered as far away as Seattle!

Re:This study sponsored by 7-Up - The Uncola! (1)

pbhj (607776) | more than 5 years ago | (#28033173)

But if you mix cola and uncola, they annihilate each other, producing huge amounts of pure energy. Be careful!

But if you mix cola and uncola, they annihilate each other, producing huge amounts of pure energy^W colons. Be careful!

Not just cola (1)

lazybratsche (947030) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032345)

TFA states that it's a general problem with soft drinks, and the really serious cases involve patients that drink multiple liters every day. Not that there's any particular benefit to more reasonable consumption (say, 20 oz/day), even if it won't put you in the hospital.

Re:Not just cola (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28032479)

The benefit, obviously, is the delicious, refreshing taste of NameBrand Cola.
Or for urban hispanic youths, the crisp, refreshing taste of NameBrand Citrus Beverage.
Soccer Moms and Minivan Dads can always depend on NameBrand Diet Black Cherry Vanilla Cream Soda for a new twist on an old favorite.
Blacks know we got they back with the classic flavors they love in NameBrand Orange Soda and NameBrand Grape Soda.

Cola specific? (2, Insightful)

EvilToiletPaper (1226390) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032419)

AFAIK hypoalkemia can be caused by fluid intake of any type in excess e.g. the mother who died recently on a radio program after drinking too much water. TFA doesn't state if cola affects it more than say water.

I know cola has a lot more bad stuff in it but does is it a major catalyst of hypoalkemia?
Looks like the reporter just wanted to make a sensational headline.

Re:Cola specific? (1)

piojo (995934) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032511)

I know cola has a lot more bad stuff in it but does is it a major catalyst of hypoalkemia?
  Looks like the reporter just wanted to make a sensational headline.

On the other hand, how common is it to drink multiple liters of water per day? (Unless you're hiking the Grand Canyon.) If people are more likely to suffer this condition due to drinking soda, it seems fair to include "soda" in the headline.

Re:Cola specific? (1)

sexconker (1179573) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032679)

"Hold Your Wee for a Wii", they called it.
Morons.

Re:Cola specific? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28033485)

the mother who died recently on a radio program after drinking too much water

Methinks you need to get your sense of time fixed: that was over two years ago. That's not even recent in real time, let alone internet time.

Why post that on slashdot? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28032425)

Cola is not good for muscles. So? No nerd has to worry about it. No muscles, no problem.

Re:Why post that on slashdot? (1)

Tablizer (95088) | more than 5 years ago | (#28033087)

No nerd has to worry about it. No muscles, no problem.

What about our Ctrl-Alt-Del finger muscles?
   

Re:Why post that on slashdot? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28033227)

real nerds don't use Windows, dummy ;-P

Re:Why post that on slashdot? (1)

geekboy642 (799087) | more than 5 years ago | (#28033357)

Right, right. That poser. Everybody knows real geeks have to hit ctrl-alt-meta-super-F6 to save their documents.

right... the IJCP (1)

mcfatboy93 (1363705) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032437)

great just another thing we need, a warning on bad things we all like, like video games and eating too much candy...O, right.

Very dramatic (5, Interesting)

4D6963 (933028) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032463)

Hypokalemia is very dramatic. Not. According to Wikipedia:

Mild hypokalemia is often without symptoms, although it may cause a small elevation of blood pressure,[5] and can occasionally provoke cardiac arrhythmias. Moderate hypokalemia, with serum potassium concentrations of 2.5-3 mEq/L, may cause muscular weakness, myalgia, and muscle cramps (owing to disturbed function of the skeletal muscles), and constipation (from disturbed function of smooth muscles).

In other words you might have cramps and the likes, and be constipated. And what's the no less dramatic cure to this terrible ailment? Oral potassium chloride supplements (Klor-Con, Sando-K, Slow-K) or just eating leafy green vegetables, tomatoes, citrus fruits, oranges or bananas.

Really, thanks for that Slashdot. While we're at it, did you know that it is estimated that over 40% of the population has B12 deficiency [wikipedia.org] , and that it can cause tiredness, decreased mental work capacity, decreased concentration and decreased memory, irritability and depression?

water (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28032503)

it's good, just fyi.

What part of cola? (2, Informative)

LoRdTAW (99712) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032593)

So what ingredient of cola does this? Last I read most popular cola drinks like Coke and Pepsi are nothing more than sugar, water, cinnamon, vanilla and phosphoric acid. Most cola drinks do not even have kola nut ingredients in them.

On thing is sure I stopped drinking the stuff regularly when I went to the dentist and had eleven cavities. Yes I brush twice a day and use the water pick. The trick is to rinse your mouth out after drinking very acidic and sugary drinks. As soon as you drink the acid begins to attack your enamel so after your done with a soda rinse your mouth out thoroughly with water. The few hours between drinking an acidic drink and brushing is more than enough time for acids to attack your teeth. This is what my dentist told me as he was drilling, not fun.

Oh shit... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28032607)

I've been drinking around 2 liters a day for several months now. I feel like I want to beat wjousts, the author, into a pulp.

But let's be honest, thank you. I'm going to switch to the good old tap water for a change.

I Thread The Needle (0, Offtopic)

Dean Edmonds (189342) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032655)

I only drink caffiene-free diet sodas, so it looks like I'm safe.

Bananas (2, Insightful)

Anenome (1250374) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032793)

Might explain why I had a major hankering for bananas :P Eating as many as two or more per day. Bananas freakin' rock, the perfect fruit! Comes in it's own 'packaging', the flavor varies by ripeness (I like 'em a bit green), easily blended, no seeds to pick or spit out, and cheap and easily available.

Terrific news!!! (1)

erroneus (253617) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032799)

Pretty soon, the prices on cola will drop to the floor with this news. Then I can stock up!!

umm anybody notice the 2-10 liter part? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28032943)

how many people do you know that drink 2 liters of soda a day? that's 4 16.9 oz bottles. And that's just the lower limit of problem causing levels. 10 liters of soda a day ftw!

News flash - this stuff will kill you (1, Flamebait)

illumin8 (148082) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032949)

The amount that people drink in this study is just astounding. And really, how much common sense do these people have?

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.

I'll give you hint sweetie. If you have persistent vomiting and you're drinking 3 liters a day of anything, stop drinking it and I bet your vomiting will go away!

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.

Gee, you dumbshit. You're so fat you have to drive an electric scooter around with a basket to carry your 2 liter flagon of high fructose corn syrup, and you wonder why you have health problems?

Man, I knew people were stupid, but not this stupid...

Naw, gotta be a trick (1)

Tablizer (95088) | more than 5 years ago | (#28032957)

excessive cola consumption can also lead to hypokalaemia

Let me get this strait: hyper cola-mania leads to "hypokalaemia"?
       

What's Next? (2, Funny)

Tablizer (95088) | more than 5 years ago | (#28033011)

Next they'll tell us that pizza, lack of sun, and too much pr0n leads to painful death.
     

Correlation != Causation, for the love of Mohamed! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28033103)

How many times do I have to point out to these fucking retarded "scientists" that correlation is NOT the same as causation! Just because two things happen at the same time doesn't mean they are related. This soda study is exactly the kind of hoax bullshit study that makes you wonder what the fuck they teach in science class these days.

once again, for the exceptionally slow:

Correlation != Causation

Get it through your thick skulls.

Re:Correlation != Causation, for the love of Moham (1)

Tablizer (95088) | more than 5 years ago | (#28033281)

Correlation != Causation

Good science tries to check this by looking for other correlations. Participants are often given long questionares with various life-style and food questions. Other factors that "stick out" are then investigated further. True, sometimes things slip through the cracks; no study is perfect.
     

We're #1!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28033307)

Way to go America! We're twice as good as "average"

FTA:
"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."

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