Legal Articles

June 27, 2013

Woman’s heart problems connected to soda consumption

In an extreme example of what can happen when you drink too much soda, a 31-year-old woman living in Monaco (a country near southern France) recently found out that her fainting spells and heart problems likely have to do with her pop consumption. The problem was diagnosed after she fainted and was taken to a hospital for testing. Doctors found her body’s potassium level to be extremely low and “a test of her heart’s electrical activity revealed she had a condition called long QT syndrome, which can cause erratic heart beats.”

No water in 16 years

After inquiring into her family’s medical history and her own, it was discovered that “since the age of 15, she had not drunk any water—soda (specifically cola) was the only liquid she consumed.” She didn’t skimp herself on it either, drinking upwards of 2 quarts of the beverage daily. Doctors put her on a strict no-cola diet and after just one week of soda abstinence, her heart beat activity and potassium levels achieved “normal” status.

Potassium regulates heart beats

Doctors believe her fainting spells and heart arrhythmia were caused by the tendency of excessive pop consumption to induce diarrhea, which in turn leads to loss of potassium. The researchers continued, “High amounts of caffeine can also increase urine production and decrease potassium reabsorption . . . low levels of potassium may cause heart rhythm problems.”

This hasn’t been the only case of potassium deficiency linked to cola consumption. Researchers found there have been 6 other cases where people had similar habits and similar problems.


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