Newswise — As we have seen in the past week, sugary and caffeinated drinks can cause harm to our bodies. UAB physicians and researchers are available to discuss the dangers and toll on our body from drinking sodas and energy drinks. The UAB News Studio offers live or recorded HD interviews at no cost via the LTN Global Network and ISDN lines. Experts include:
Candice Dye, M.D., UAB Pediatrician
Coffee houses have a become a popular hangout for teens, exposing them to caffeinated beverages. Dye suggests having a conversation with your teen on the amount of caffeine that they are consuming. It is important for children and teens to have a well-balanced diet and caffeine does not offer any nutritional value.
Safe consumption amounts will vary with each child, but the risks do not change. As stimulate, caffeine will make a child’s heart rate speed up and is a diuretic, which can cause dehydration. Caffeine cannot kill you according to Dye, but it can exasperate underlying medical conditions.
Amy Shapshak, M.D., UAB Neurologist
In a recent case study, UAB physicians chronicled the first brain bleed tied to energy drinks. The patient in the case experienced a hemorrhagic stroke, or brain bleed, while doing yard work following the consumption of an energy drink. A 57-year-old man developed an intracranial hemorrhage within 15 minutes of drinking a popular energy drink.
Shapshak says that drinking high levels of caffeine along with a variety of other ingredients are associated with increases in blood pressure. Drinks containing caffeine and other supplements could interact with each other, overstimulating the sympathetic nervous system, which regulates the “flight or fight” response of the body. It is important to know what you are drinking and the risks it poses to your health.
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