Archive for June 2019

Sudden cardiac deaths linked to Energy drinks in young people.

“High amounts of sugar and caffeine can aggravate underlying heart issues, causing fatal arrhythmias!”

To many adolescents and young adults, energy drinks have become essential for getting through the day. But they carry a serious risk of sudden death, a new study finds.

An international research team, has concluded that energy drinks are the cause of many sudden cardiac deaths in young, healthy individuals. The main concern is that these beverages can easily aggravate underlying heart issues. Because of their high amounts of caffeine and sugar, dangerous arrhythmias can easily develop in the hearts of young people who drink them.

Many people already balk at the high amounts of labeled caffeine on these drinks. The problem is that there are many additional sources of caffeine that are “masked” by the labeling.

“Masked” caffeine

Ingredients such as guarana, ginseng, and taurine have caffeine concentrations that are equal to, or higher than, caffeine found in coffee. Ingesting high doses of any of these substances can be very dangerous.

Roughly 31% of adolescents from ages 12 to 19 consume energy drinks on a regular basis. An even higher number of people use alternatives to these beverages, such as gums or inhalers. The high amounts of caffeine in all of these products is causing serious harm, the study found. Of the 5,448 caffeine overdoses reported in the United States in 2007, 46% of them occurred in people under the age of 19. The question is, how can we halt this trend of overconsumption by young people?

Dr. Sanchis-Gomar and his team came up with several guidelines to keep young people from over-indulging. They caution that:

  • One can (250 mL) of an energy drink per day is safe for most healthy adolescents.
  • Energy drink consumption before or during sports practice should be avoided.
  • Adolescents with clinically relevant underlying medical conditions should consult cardiologists before drinking energy drinks.
  • Excessive energy drink consumption together with alcohol or other drugs, or both, may lead to adverse effects, including death.

In the study published in the Canadian Journal of Cardiology, Dr. Sanchis-Gomar goes on to say alerting physicians to the dangers of energy drinks is extremely important.

“It is important for physicians to understand the lack of regulation in caffeine content and other ingredients of these high-energy beverages,” he said. Knowledge and awareness are key to providing safety for young people. 

Broken heart

You Really Can Die From A Broken Heart – Cardiologist Explains.

The concept of ‘dying from a broken heart’ is a tale that is often shared in our favorite movies and fairy-tales, painting a picture of a love that was so perfect that once just can’t imagine living without their partner. A romantic notion indeed, but experts are speaking up and revealing that ‘Broken heart syndrome’ isn’t reserved for works of fiction! In fact, people are suffering from the condition right here in America today!

Also known as ‘stress-induced cardiomyopathy,’ this is a condition that is caused when someone is under sudden extreme stress, like that caused by the loss of a loved one. 

Dr. Matthew Lorber, a psychiatrist at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York explains, “Broken heart syndrome – which is, in fact, a real thing – is when someone finds out some shocking news, typically terrible news, and there’s a massive release of these stress hormones that are released into the bloodstream, and the heart is then bombarded with these stress hormones. This could be the news, certainly, of a loved one dying, which is where the ‘broken heart syndrome’ name comes from. This could be the news of getting a divorce. This could be a boss coming in and telling you that you’re fired – anything that can cause intense stress”

Source: Collective Evolution

Lorber also warns that this shocking or stressful news doesn’t have to be negative in nature. For example, a father being told for the first time that he is about to have a baby can trigger a similar bodily reaction. When the stress hormones reach the heart, they cause a temporary weakening of the left ventricle, limiting its ability to adequately function. As a result, the heart momentarily ‘freezes,’ causing circulation problems.

While there are some risk factors that will increase your chances, anyone can experience broken heart syndrome regardless of how healthy you may be. That being said, 90% of cases are in women, specifically those with a history of mental health problems, or those who have a history of neurological problems such as seizures. 

Those who are over the age of 50 are also at a higher risk. Surprisingly, a history of heart disease does not impact your risk of broken heart syndrome.

The condition is treatable in most cases; however, it is important that all Americans educate ourselves on the signs and symptoms so as to seek medical assistance at the first sign. Often mimicking a heart attack, stress-induced cardiomyopathy often presents with chest pain, shortness of breath, low blood pressure, nausea, dizziness, fainting or an irregular heartbeat.