Heart disease in a can: Energy drinks can put you in hospital with chest pain and heart palpitation

By @ritwikroy1985 on
Energy Drinks
Energy drinks are displayed at a Walmart store in Secaucus, New Jersey, November 11, 2015. Reuters/Lucas Jackson

A new study has established a connection between guzzling down energy drinks and hospital admissions for adverse heart reactions. Thus, those who like gulping down energy drinks to stay awake or mix one with alcohol should think twice. Researchers have found out that consuming more than two energy drinks a day may lead to heart problems including heart palpitations, chest pain and fast heartbeat.

According to Herald Sun, 60 patients, aged between 13 and 40, were surveyed. They all attended emergency departments with heart palpitations. Out of the 60 patients surveyed, the study, published in International Journal of Cardiology, found 36 percent had consumed at least one energy drink in the past 24 hours.

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Eight patients had had five energy drinks and one had drunk 12 energy drinks with alcohol, revealed Study co-author Dr Scott Willoughby. Overall, about 70 percent of the patients had drunk at least one energy drink in their lifetime.

“Those patients who were heavy consumers of energy drinks were found to have a significantly higher frequency of heart palpitations than those who consumed less than one per day,” Willoughby said.

He added that chest pains, heart palpitations and faster heartbeats were experienced by energy drink consumers who were healthy and had no risk factors for heart diseases.

According to Dr. Ian Musgrave of the University of Adelaide’s Discipline of Pharmacology, different brands of energy drinks contain ingredients that create a “toxic combination” that can be even more harmful if consumed with alcohol.

In June 2015, Martin Bowling, an energy drink addict from UK, suffered a massive heart attack after he downed two litres of caffeine-pumped energy drink in The Bull pub in Romford. 28-year-old Bowling got addicted to caffeine beverages, unaware of the energy drink side effects.

His habit reached such a proportion that he was spending $156 every week to quench his thirst. He has been consuming the beverages for seven years, starting at the age of 21.

“There were no warning signs. I don't even know if it hurt. I just remember hitting the floor and waking up in hospital. Now I see those drinks as death in a can,” Bowling said.

Bowling is extremely thankful to the stranger who took quick actions and saved his life after he hit the floor watching a boxing match at the pub.

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