May 20, 2009

Excessive cola may cause muscle paralysis

Excessive cola consumption can lead to muscle problems, -- from mild weakness to profound paralysis, researchers in Greece warn.

We are consuming more soft drinks than ever before and a number of health issues have already been identified including tooth problems, bone demineralization and the development of metabolic syndrome and diabetes, Dr. Moses Elisaf of the University of Ioannina in Greece said in a statement.

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.

The review, scheduled to be published in the June issue International Journal of Clinical Practice, said all the patients studied made a rapid and full recovery after they stopped drinking cola and took oral or intravenous potassium.

Elisaf and colleagues reviewed case studies that looked at patients whose consumption of cola ranged from two to nine quarts of cola a day.

In one case study, a 21-year-old woman consumed up to about three quarts of cola a day and complained of fatigue, appetite loss and persistent vomiting. Another woman, who had been drinking seven quarts of cola a day for 10 months had low potassium levels and suffered from increasing muscular weakness.