What happens to a person who drinks only soda for 16 straight years?

Attention soda pop drinkers! How long have you been drinking cola? The case of a 31-year old woman's heart problems, after drinking only soda for 16 straight years, highlights the hazards of extreme soda drinking.

The dangers of excessive soda pop consumption are well documented. The average American drinks about two cans of soda every day, and no, the fact that it’s diet soda only means there are a separate set of health risks.

Kidney and metabolism problems, obesity, tooth decay and cell damage are just a few of the known health hazards associated with drinking too much of the dark bubbly.

For a 31-year-old woman living in Monaco near southern France, she can now add heart problems to the list, as she was diagnosed with QT Syndrome after drinking nothing but soda pop for 16 straight years.

After being taken to the hospital for repeat fainting spells, the rare heart condition of Long QT Syndrome was diagnosed. QT Syndrome is an abnormality in the electrical system of the heart, which can cause heart arrhythmias, palpitations, seizures and cardiac arrest.

By definition, the “QT” interval refers to a specific measurement on the electrocardiogram – the time between the start of the Q wave and the end of the T wave in the heart's electrical cycle. Measured in seconds or in milliseconds, Long QT means there is an aberration in the interval.

The woman, who did not have any family history of heart problems, was shown to have extremely low potassium levels. She admitted to never drinking water, but preferring to drink approximately two liters of cola every day since she was 15.

Surprisingly, her body recovered relatively quickly. After going cold turkey and detoxifying her body for one week, her QT interval and potassium levels returned to normal.

The French woman’s case highlights the dangers in excessive soda pop consumption.

Although it may contain water as the primary ingredient, drinking only soda, especially dark colas, is in no way a substitute for the body’s need for water. The harmful impact of soda pop actually causes your body to age faster.

Consider just these two ingredients and their potential side effects:

  • Sugar – Manufacturers of soft drinks are the single largest refiner of sugar in the United States. An alarming amount of sugars – disguised under actual sugar or synthetic names – go into one serving of soda. Sugar increases insulin levels, leads to high blood pressure, high cholesterol, heart disease, diabetes and weight gain.
  • Aspartame – This sugar substitute has a list of cons. You may have heard that aspartame “eats your brain,” and the truth is not far from that. Close to 100 different health side effects are associated with aspartame consumption.

Image Source: Wikimedia Commons
Article Source: Fox News