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Soda Hurts — Knowledge Empowers!
Soda Hurts White Paper By Shay Villere
All rights reserved © 2009
TABLE OF CONTENTS
SODA ....................................................................................................................................................................... 1 COFFEE .................................................................................................................................................................. 5 ENERGY DRINKS................................................................................................................................................ 9 ALCOHOL.............................................................................................................................................................12 FRENCH FRIES..................................................................................................................................................16
The Real Dangers of Soda to You and Your Children (By Dr. Joseph Mercola with Rachael Droege) http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2003/07/09/soda‐dangers‐part‐ two.aspx How many sodas have you had today? How about your kids? The average American drinks an estimated 56 gallons of soft drinks each year, but before you grab that next can of soda, consider this: one can of soda has about 10 teaspoons of sugar, 150 calories, 30 to 55 mg of caffeine, and is loaded with artificial food colors and sulphites. This is an alarming amount of sugar, calories and harmful additives in a product that has absolutely no nutritional value. Plus, studies have linked soda to osteoporosis, obesity, tooth decay and heart disease. Despite this, soda accounts for more than one‐ quarter of all drinks consumed in the United States. Teenagers and children, who many soft drinks are marketed toward, are among the largest consumers. In the past 10 years, soft drink consumption among children has almost doubled in the United States. Teenage boys now drink, on average, three or more cans of soda per day, and 10 percent drink seven or more cans a day. The average for teenage girls is more than two cans a day, and 10 percent drink more than five cans a day. While these numbers may sound high, they’re not surprising considering that most school hallways are lined with vending machines that sell, of course, soft drinks. It’s not uncommon for schools to make marketing deals with leading soft drink companies such as Coca‐Cola from which they receive commissions‐‐based on a percentage of sales at each school‐‐and sometimes a lump‐sum payment. Let’s take a look at some of the major components of a can of soda: Phosphoric Acid: May interfere with the body's ability to use calcium, which can lead to osteoporosis or softening of the teeth and bones. Phosphoric acid also neutralizes the hydrochloric acid in your stomach, which can interfere with digestion, making it difficult to utilize nutrients. Sugar: Soft drink manufacturers are the largest single user of refined sugar in the United States. It is a proven fact that sugar increases insulin levels, which can lead to high blood pressure, high cholesterol, heart disease, diabetes, weight gain, premature aging and many more negative side effects. Most sodas include over 100 percent of the RDA of sugar.
Aspartame: This chemical is used as a sugar substitute in diet soda. There are over 92 different health side effects associated with aspartame consumption including brain tumors, birth defects, diabetes, emotional disorders and epilispsy/seizures. Further, when aspartame is stored for long periods of time or kept in warm areas it changes to methanol, an alcohol that converts to formaldehyde and formic acid, which are known carcinogens. Caffeine: Caffeinated drinks cause jitters, insomnia, high blood pressure, irregular heartbeat, elevated blood cholesterol levels, vitamin and mineral depletion, breast lumps, birth defects, and perhaps some forms of cancer. Tap Water: I recommend that everyone avoid drinking tap water because it can carry any number of chemicals including chlorine, trihalomethanes, lead, cadmium, and various organic pollutants. Tap water is the main ingredient in bottled soft drinks. Soda is one of the main reasons, nutritionally speaking, why many people suffer health problems. Aside from the negative effects of the soda itself, drinking a lot of soda is likely to leave you with little appetite for vegetables, protein and other food that your body needs. If you are still drinking soda, stopping the habit is an easy way to improve your health. Pure water is a much better choice. If you must drink a carbonated beverage, try sparkling mineral water.
Soda Causing Nutritional Deficiencies in Children Children and adolescents who drink soda may be depriving themselves of several important vitamins and minerals, results of a new survey suggest. The researchers note that soda consumption among children and adolescents rose 41% between 1989‐1991 and 1994‐1995, mostly displacing milk and juice, the leading sources of many vitamins and minerals in the American diet. The results are based on data from more than 4,000 children aged 2 to 17 years. Among children aged 2 to 5: 75% drank milk 53% drank juice 34% drank soda In those aged 12 to 17: 63% of boy and 49% of girls drank milk
34% drank juice 68% of boys and 63% of girls drank soda Soda drinkers were less likely to get the recommended levels of: vitamin A calcium magnesium
Source: Archives of Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine November, 2000; 154: 11481152
Each Daily Soda Increases Obesity Risk 60% For every soft drink or sugar‐sweetened beverage a child drinks every day, their obesity risk appears to jump 60%. About 65% of adolescent girls and 74% of adolescent boys consume soft drinks daily. Currently, soft drinks constitute the leading source of added sugars in the diet, amounting to 36.2 grams daily for adolescent girls and 57.7 grams for boys. The study included over 500 schoolchildren of various ethnic backgrounds who were aged 11 and 12. The investigators found that for every can or glass of sugar‐sweetened beverage a child drank during the 19‐month study, a child's body mass index ‐‐ a measure of weight related to height ‐‐ and their chance of becoming obese increased 60%. This is the first long‐term study that links soft drink consumption to obesity in children. The study received no financial support from any organization that either promotes or opposes soft drink consumption. Obesity among US children has increased significantly since 1960 ‐‐ by 54% in children aged 6 to 11 and by 40% for adolescents, according to a report on the topic that came out late last year. The consumption of soft drinks has increased 500% in the last 50 years, according to the US Department of Agriculture.
Source: The Lancet 2001;357:505508
Bad News Increase in Soda and Juice A recent study found that kids who drink sweet beverages: Have a high overall calorie intake 3
Are less likely to eat fruit Are at a higher risk for obesity How was the study conducted? Food records were analyzed from over 500 students in grades four through six. Students completed the records over a 3‐ to 7‐day period. What did the researchers find about the children's drinking and eating habits? Sweetened beverages made up over 50 percent of the children's daily liquid intake. Children with the highest consumption took in over 300 calories more each day than children with lower intake. The children with the highest sweetened drink consumption ate more than 60 percent less fruit than those with the lowest sweetened beverage intake. The researchers speculated that the level of sweetened beverage consumption could be used as a marker for poor dietary habits and low fruit consumption.
Source: American Journal of Public Health August 2002; 92
DURHAM, N.C. ‐ ‐ A study by researchers at Duke University Medical Center shows that caffeine taken in the morning has effects on the body that persist until bedtime and amplifies stress consistently throughout the day. These results show for the first time that the effects of caffeine last considerably longer than originally thought, said the scientists, and that caffeine exaggerates stress in people who consume it every day. The study, which was funded by the National Institutes of Health, appears in the July/August 2002 issue of Psychosomatic Medicine. "The effects of coffee drinking are long‐lasting and exaggerate the stress response both in terms of the body’s physiological response in blood pressure elevations and stress hormone levels, but it also magnifies a person’s perception of stress," said James D. Lane, Ph.D., associate research professor in the department of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Duke and lead author of the study. "People haven’t really accepted the fact that there could be a health downside to caffeine consumption, but our evidence – and that of other studies – shows that this downside exists and people should be aware of it in order to make the best possible health choices." To determine the effects of caffeine on people as they go about their normal activities, the researchers enrolled 47 healthy, habitual coffee drinkers in a double blind, placebo‐ controlled study. That is, neither the participants nor the researchers knew when the participants were receiving caffeine or the placebo. To qualify for the study, the coffee drinkers were asked to fill out a daily diary of caffeine intake for a period of one week. They kept the diary in order to determine the average amount of caffeine they consumed on a daily basis, the type of caffeinated beverages they drank, and the variation from day to day, all of which helped verify the participants as habitual coffee drinkers. Once the coffee drinkers qualified for the study, their responses to caffeine were measured on two different, randomly chosen days. On one day, the coffee drinkers were given a 250‐milligram dose of caffeine in the morning and again at lunchtime. On the other day, they were given identical capsules containing a placebo at the same time interval. The doses of caffeine ‐‐ equal to four cups of coffee ‐‐ and the dosage times were chosen to reflect normal patterns of coffee drinking in adults. Half of the study participants received caffeine on the first day of study and the others received it on the second day. The coffee drinkers were given, on average, two to three days off between study days during which they could consume as many caffeinated beverages as they normally desired. On both study days, coffee drinkers wore a portable monitor that measured blood pressure and heart rate four times an hour from early morning until bedtime, while they
went about their normal daily activities. They were asked to collect urine samples so that the researchers could measure the amount of stress hormones they had produced that day. They were also asked to keep a diary to record their perceived stress levels as well as their physical position – standing, sitting or lying down – each time the monitor was activated. When the researchers compared the caffeine days to the placebo days they discovered that caffeine consumption significantly raised systolic and diastolic blood pressure consistently throughout the day and night, and adrenaline levels rose by 32 percent. The researchers found that the elevated levels persisted as the evening progressed to bedtime. The study also showed that while caffeine increases blood pressure and heart rate, it also amplifies those effects at the times when participants report higher levels of stress during their day, said Lane. The caffeine appears to compound the effects of stress both psychologically in terms of perceived stress levels and physiologically in terms of elevated blood pressures and stress hormone levels ‐‐ as if the stressor is actually of greater magnitude, he said. "The caffeine we drink enhances the effects of the stresses we experience, so if we have a stressful job, drinking coffee makes our body respond more to the ordinary stresses we experience," he said. "The combination of stress and caffeine has a multiplying, or synergistically negative effect. "Everyone accepts that stress can be unhealthy. Our results suggest that drinking coffee or other caffeinated drinks can make stress even more unhealthy." The researchers noted that while habitual coffee drinkers might be expected to demonstrate tolerance to the effects of caffeine, they still showed significant responses to the drug. "Our findings indicate that eliminating coffee and other caffeinated beverages from the diet could be a helpful way to decrease blood pressure and other stress reactions," said Lane. "I think that people who feel 'stressed out' should at least consider quitting caffeine to see if they feel better. Quitting caffeine could be particularly beneficial for people suffering from high blood pressure, just as diet and exercise can help keep blood pressure under control." The researchers said that despite the perceived safety of overwhelmingly popular caffeinated beverages such as coffee, the drug does show short‐term negative health effects that, if continued over a period of years, could increase risk of heart attack and stroke. "While today’s cup of coffee might not, by itself, cause you much harm, the cumulative effects of drinking it day after day over a lifetime could really be unhealthy," Lane concluded. Other authors on the study are Carl Pieper, DrPH, Barbara Phillips‐Bute, Ph.D., John Bryant, Ph.D., and Cynthia Kuhn, Ph.D., all of Duke.
The negative effects of caffeine are well documented, but not all research agrees on the results of caffeine. Some is specifically caffeine negative, citing numerous negative effects of caffeine. Other studies take a more positive approach and cite both benefits and possible problems with caffeine consumption. Most studies correlate the negative effects of caffeine with high caffeine intake, and with certain physical conditions or groups of people who tend to have more problems with caffeine. A small amount of caffeine intake by a completely healthy person may have minimal effect. Caffeine is a stimulant and it will elevate heart rate, increase blood flow, and raise body temperature. It increases blood sugar levels and act as a diuretic, meaning you urinate more frequently and reduce water intake. One of the negative effects of caffeine is that small amounts of caffeine taken daily, for example a cup of coffee a day, can create physical dependence on caffeine. If you fail to drink your daily dose of caffeine, you can end up with headaches, excessive sleepiness, a feeling like you can’t function or flu like symptoms. Withdrawal from caffeine can take anywhere from a few days to a few weeks depending upon how much caffeine you customarily consume. When caffeine intake is above 300 milligrams a day, about three cups of coffee or three to four sodas, the caffeine may at first make you feel energized. Yet one of the negative effects of caffeine is its ability to disrupt sleep cycles, causing less deep sleep, particularly when you have caffeinated beverages within a few hours of bedtime. So while you may be using coffee or other caffeine laced beverages to “get you started” in the morning, you likely need this extra boost because you are getting inadequate sleep. In 2006, studies on night shift workers found that those who consume caffeine at night are most prone to this effect. Since night shift work already disrupts normal sleeping patterns, caffeine intake may create more serious issues. Those who drink caffeinated beverages and work the night shift have a far greater likelihood of getting insufficient deep sleep during the day. This can result in a continued cycle of exhaustion and caffeine boosts, a greater dependence on caffeine, and more caffeine consumed, which only exacerbates the problem. Certain people are also particularly caffeine sensitive and more likely to experience negative effects of caffeine. For example, some people will feel “buzzed” or hyped up from one cup of coffee. Lower body weight tends to translate to higher likelihood of experiencing the negative effects of caffeine. People with panic disorder or generalized anxiety disorder are much more prone to reacting badly from increased heart rate. Caffeine, even in small doses, can create panic attacks and interfere with medications taken to calm the system. Caffeine does reduce dopamine, a chemical produced by the brain that affects the brain’s pleasure centers. This can create more depression and anxiety. For people with high blood pressure or high blood sugar levels (diabetes) the negative effects of caffeine should be understood. Caffeine can raise both these levels. Any type of heart problem can be affected by caffeine. The negative effect of caffeine in increasing heart rate can create problems for people with heart conditions, and in high doses, caffeine can induce irregular heartbeats in healthy people.
People with stomach conditions like irritable bowel syndrome, Crohn’s disease, ulcers, and gastro‐intestinal reflux, may all suffer from the negative effects of caffeine. Caffeine increases acidic response in the stomach which may lead to excessive bowel movements and is associated with stomach discomfort. Negative effects of caffeine can be broken down into moderate and serious side effects. Moderate negative effects of caffeine include: Headaches Irritability Increase in breast tenderness Restlessness Mild insomnia Increased heart rate Increased blood sugar Difficulty concentrating Mild stomach upset Severe negative effects of caffeine include: Panic attacks Irregular heartbeat Sleep deprivation Continuous stomach problems Prolonged depression Sleep disorders Though there are some positive effects of caffeine, the negative effects of caffeine should be understood. Be aware if you are in a high‐risk group for severe negative effects. If you have mood disorders, high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease, kidney disease, chronic intestinal issues, work the night shift or are pregnant, you should minimize caffeine intake.
Energy drinks may cause serious long and short term effects. Drinks such as Adrenaline, Red Bull, and Venom have high doses of caffeine, some as much as 80mg per serving which doesn't sound like much but most energy drinks consist of two or more servings per can. Caffeine mixed with B vitamins, ginseng, guarana, and ephedrine can cause more than just a boost of energy. The ingredients in these drinks can cause irregular heart beats and boost blood pressure. Another danger is consuming energy drinks with alcohol. When you mix these two it may not have a pretty outcome. Energy drinks are stimulants and alcohol is a depressant when you mix the two it has opposite effects on your brain and body. The stimulant makes it hard to tell how intoxicated you are, which may result in alcohol poisoning or vomiting. Both alcohol and Energy drinks cause dehydration as a result can prevent your body from breaking down the alcohol. Dr. Mark Kantor, a professor at University of Maryland at College Park commented on the so called "magical" ingredients found in drinks like Red Bull. Kantor said, "It's really very silly, because [the company] is putting common vitamins that are widely found in food in this drink. There is no evidence that this product is going to do what it claims to do." There is still a question do these drinks really boost energy or is it all in our heads? Liz Applegate a sports nutritionist at the University of California at Davis said. "Frankly, they're nothing much more than caffeine in a can with a lot of sugar." If that is the case why are spending two dollars a can? Jackie Farnsworth, the director of Salt Lake Community College Health and Wellness Services said, "The primary ingredient in energy drinks is caffeine, very high levels of caffeine. The problem with promoting them as an energy drink is that people assume they are healthy." Farnsworth also said, "Caffeine is an addictive substance, and can cause substance addiction." Caffeine and energy drinks aren't necessarily deadly but they do have a different impact on everybody. Red Bull and other similar drinks did not have to be approved by the FDA before they started selling in the U.S. Red Bull has not been around long enough in the to prove there are worse long‐term effects so stay informed of the possible risks they may have on our bodies later on. According to Farnsworth, "Energy drinks do not have to be destructive if proper precautions are taken. They should not be consumed every day and especially no more than one or two a day. I really recommend using energy drinks with caution, know what you are putting into your body, do not use with alcohol or while pregnant."
As energy drinks become increasingly popular to college students they are offered on and off campus for convenience, keep in mind that just because they are called energy drinks do not mean they are healthy. For more information, call Salt Lake Community College Health and Wellness Services at phone number 957‐4268 or visit their website www.slcc.edu/hw.
Side Effects Of Energy Drinks http://www.edrinks.net/energy‐drinks/side‐effects.aspx Since energy drinks don’t all contain the same ingredients, you’ll probably find your body reacting differently from brand to brand. However, the ingredients in these drinks that are giving them a bad rap are namely guarana, taurine and especially caffeine. These are the ingredients aimed at providing you with an increased spurt of energy. However, these same energy boosters have been shown to have some pretty nasty effects on your body’s systems and on your short‐term memory. The side effects you might experience depend on the drink’s ingredients. Many drinks are made with a high percentage of carbohydrates. This will often make it harder for food and nutrients to be absorbed into your bloodstream, so your energy boost might not be as high or as effective. Excess carbohydrates can also cause the drinker to experience some gastrointestinal problems – especially if you drink one right before performing intense activity. This is why an energy drink that’s high in carbs isn’t a good choice for competitive athletes. Carbs slow down the rate of fluid absorption, and make it harder to rehydrate during exercise. Energy drinks also tend to be packed with a lot of fructose and sugar, which can often have laxative effects on your body. Sugar causes your energy levels (or insulin levels) to come crashing down once the sugar leaves the bloodstream. Energy drinks high in sugar are good for a short‐term buzz, as they stimulate your nervous system quickly, which usually makes you feel more energetic at first. However, the sugar is used up in a short period, and the drinker is often left feeling more fatigued than they were to begin with. If your drink contains high amounts of sugar, regular consumption will lead to dental health problems such as cavities. Caffeine is known to have both laxative and diuretic effects on the body, which means you often lose the stimulant through excess urination and are left dehydrated. Caffeine also increases your heart rate and body temperature. Too much of this stimulant can cause an irregular heartbeat, excess sweating, jitters and anxiousness, which is hardly ideal if you want to concentrate for an exam or get in the mindset for a competitive event. On top of that, high amounts of caffeine can reduce your coordination and balance. Too many energy drinks with caffeine will disturb your sleeping patterns. These are the reasons that top the list of why children, pregnant women and people with heart conditions should avoid energy drinks.
If the side effects of energy drinks alone aren’t enough to deter you, then add some alcohol to strengthen the negative effects. Mixing energy drinks with booze causes further dehydration. This explains why raver kids are passing out at dance clubs. Energy drink cocktails cause drowsiness, loss of coordination and slow reflexes. To make matters worse, when you’re pounding back energy drinks and alcohol it’s hard to determine just how much booze you’ve actually taken in. As a result, your blood alcohol concentration will often rise in conjunction with your energy and bravado – therefore you won’t even realize how much alcohol you’ve consumed, and might try to do something stupid – like drive home. However, energy drinks aren’t all doom and gloom. There are some known positive side effects as well. For instance, drinks that contain Echinacea are said to help bolster the immune system, while energy drinks containing Ginkgo biloba and ginseng are thought to improve memory. Basically, if your energy drink is causing any of these side effects, you should be aware of them. After that, it’s up to you to weigh the good with the bad.
Source: www.slccglobelink.com Globe Link Current Issue: April 30, 2009 Energy Drinks: Boost More Than Just Energy – Amber Roedel Issue date: 9/9/05 Section: News
Some Negative Effects Of Alcohol On Brain Functioning September 21, 2007 by Bill Urell There is no mystery to the fact that alcohol has an effect on our brain function, common immediate effects include blurred vision, slurred speech, and impaired co‐ordination, challenged memory recall and slowed reaction times. Typically, these effects subside after a time, although excessive binge drinking may result in lasting damage and even death. Continued alcohol abuse hampers our ability to recover and leads to permanent brain functional disability. Alcohol dependence damages the frontal lobes of the brain and even causes a reduction of physical brain size. Excessive consumption of alcohol causes both immediate consequences and possible permanent brain damage. Apart from the obvious dangers intoxication presents by an individual placing themselves in potentially harmful situations, blackouts and memory lapses are a common result of large quantities of alcohol being consumed quickly. While it is alarming enough to be aware of the fact that a blackout or lapse of memory is the result of some brain dysfunction caused by intoxication, many who have suffered from blackouts often learn that the period of time they are unable to recall is typically retold of with the individual participating acts of serious self neglect and uncharacteristic behavior. Unfortunately, the damage alcohol has on our brain is not confined in the moments of intoxication. It does have long lasting effects; continued alcohol abuse may lead to medical conditions and brain damage that an individual may not simply sober up to fix. Alcohol abuse staves our brain of essential thiamine, which in fact leads to other serious conditions such as Wernicke’s Encephalopathy and Korsakoff’s Syndrome. The symptoms of Wernicke’s Encephalopathy include confusion, impaired memory and a lack of coordination. Korsakoff’s syndrome is evident by permanent disorientation apathy and even amnesia. Wernicke’s encephalopathy is caused by a deficiency of thiamine, also known as vitamin B1. The symptoms may resemble intoxication with difficulty in the coordination of movement especially walking, loss of sensation in the hands and impaired reflexes, confusion and drowsiness. Korsakoff syndrome is a common evolution of Wernickes encephalopathy if the condition is left untreated. Korsakoff syndrome is evident by severe memory loss most significant the short term memory is affected; the sufferer develops an inability to retain new memories. Korsakoff syndrome sufferers also become disorientated and lethargic
with life. Confusion experienced by Korsakoff syndrome sufferers is extreme to the point where they may develop altered perceptions of the world around them. While it is generally accepted that excessive consumption of alcohol results in liver damage or disease, it should also be noted that liver disease can lead to a brain condition known as hepatic encephalopathy. Damaged liver cells allow toxic ammonia and manganese to develop which have a damaging effect on the brain. This condition results in sleep disorders and personality or mood changes. Hepatic encephalopathy also produces more serious psychiatric conditions such as depression and anxiety, shortened attention span and coordination inability. Certainly alcohol has an effect on the developing brain of an unborn child. Babies born to mothers who consumed large amounts of alcohol during pregnancy are reported to have lower volume brains fewer existing brain cells and often present with learning difficulties and behavioral problems. It is now a known fact that our brains have not completed a growing cycle before birth, it continues to grow and develop right through our lives. Scientific research has found that our brain is constantly growing new cells or neurons; the consumption of alcohol inhibits our brains ability to complete the generation of cells effectively hampering its ability to function at its full potential. There are a variety of likely brain damaging conditions presented here, this by no means indicates that all alcoholics will suffer all of the symptoms and conditions discussed. Scientific research has shown that our brains do have the ability to recover from damage as noted by the brains ability to constantly replace cells and neurons, abstinence from alcohol will aid in the achievement of positive repair.
The Harmful Affects Of Alcohol On The Brain And Central Nervous System http://addictionrecoverybasics.com/2007/09/21/some‐negative‐effects‐of‐alcohol‐on‐ brain‐functioning/ ♦ Alcohol is a depressant, which slows down the central nervous system and can cause drowsiness, relieve pain and induce sleep. ♦ Drinker experiences mild euphoria and loss of inhibition as alcohol impairs region of the brain controlling behavior and emotions. Alcohol impairs behavior, judgment, memory, concentration and coordination (shortened attention span, impaired problem solving abilities), as well as inducing extreme mood swings and emotional outbursts. ♦ Alcohol acts as a sedative on the central nervous system, depressing the nerve cells in the brain, dulling, altering and damaging their ability to respond 13
appropriately. Large doses cause sleep, anesthesia, respiratory failure, coma and death. ♦ Impaired or distorted visual ability and hearing (affects ability to distinguish between sounds and perceive the direction they are coming from) ; dulled smell and taste (reducing the desire to eat) and loss of pain perception; altered sense of time and space ♦ Impairs fine motor skills, and slows reactions. ♦ Numbness and tingling in the arms and legs caused by nerve damage from depletion of thiamine (B vitamin); when severe, can damage other nerve endings, causing staggering, etc. (Wernicke's Encephalopathy). ♦ Long term drinking may result in permanent brain damage (Korsakoff's Syndrome or 'wet brain'), serious mental disorders, and addiction to alcohol. ON THE LUNGS ♦ Lowered resistance to infection. ♦ High amounts of alcohol may cause breathing to stop, then death. ON THE LIVER ♦ Chronic heavy drinking may cause alcoholic hepatitis (inflammation and destruction of liver cells) and then cirrhosis (irreversible lesions, scarring, and destruction of liver cells). Impairs the liver's ability to remove yellow pigment, and skin appears yellow (jaundice). ♦ Liver damage causes fluid to build in extremities (Edema). ♦ Decreases production of blood‐clotting factors; may cause uncontrolled bleeding ♦ Liver accumulates fat which can cause liver failure (“alcoholic fatty liver”), coma and death. REPRODUCTIVE SYSTEM – Male and Female ♦ Sexual functioning can be impaired and deteriorate, resulting in impotence and infertility, sometimes irreversible. Females also have a high risk of developing breast cancer. ♦ In men, may lead to sterility, atrophy of the testes and enlargement of the breasts. ♦ Early menopause and menstrual irregularities are common in women who drink excessively. ♦ Drinking during pregnancy significantly increases chance of delivering a baby with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome; small head, possible brain damage, abnormal facial
features, poor muscle tone, speech and sleep disorders, and retarded growth and development. HEART ♦ Weakens the heart muscle and ability to pump blood (Cardiomyopathy). ♦ Abnormal heart signals, irregular heart beat and heart enlargement. ♦ Increases blood pressure, risk of heart attack and stroke. ♦ Inhibits production of both red and white blood cells. MUSCLES ♦ Due to lower phosphate, muscles become weaker and atrophy; pain, spasms and tenderness. STOMACH/INTESTINAL/DIGESTIVE ♦ Irritation and damage of esophagus lining, induces severe vomiting, hemorrhaging, pain and difficulty swallowing. Can contribute to throat cancer. ♦ Irritation of stomach lining, can cause peptic ulcers, inflammation, bleeding lesions and cancer. Minute blood loss may deplete the body's iron stores, causing irritability, lack of energy, headaches and dizziness. ♦ The pancreas becomes stressed from having to create insulin to process the sugar present in alcohol. This creates a significant risk of pancreatitis, a chronic inflammation that can be fatal. ‐ rly menopause and menstrual irregularities are common in women who drink excessively. of sugar in alcohol. n severe, ♦ Irritation of the intestinal tract lining and the colon ♦ Nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, sweating and loss of appetite are common. ♦ Alcohol impairs the small intestine's ability to process nutrients and vitamins. ♦ Chronic drinking may result in inflammation, ulcers, and cancers of the intestines and colon. BONES ♦ Alcohol interferes with the body's ability to absorb calcium, resulting in bones being weak, soft, brittle and thinner (Osteoporosis).
Lowacrylamide French fries and potato chips Acrylamide is produced in starchy foods that are baked, roasted or fried at high temperatures. Concerns about the potential health issues associated with the dietary intake of this reactive compound led us to reduce the accumulation of asparagine, one of its main precursors, in the tubers of potato (Solanum tuberosum). This metabolic change was accomplished by silencing two asparagine synthetase genes through ‘all‐native DNA’ transformation. Glasshouse‐grown tubers of the transformed intragenic plants contained up to 20‐fold reduced levels of free asparagine. This metabolic change coincided with a small increase in the formation of glutamine and did not affect tuber shape or yield. Heat‐processed products derived from the low‐asparagine tubers were also indistinguishable from their untransformed counterparts in terms of sensory characteristics. However, both French fries and potato chips accumulated as little as 5% of the acrylamide present in wild‐type controls. Given the important role of processed potato products in the modern Western diet, a replacement of current varieties with intragenic potatoes could reduce the average daily intake of acrylamide by almost one‐ third. Asparagine plays an apparently important role in the assimilation and storage of nitrogen, and is particularly abundant in the products of wheat, coffee and potato. On heat processing, the amide amino acid reacts with reducing sugars to produce acrylamide. High levels of adduct formation have been linked to animal health issues, including cumulative nerve terminal damage. In humans, oral intake levels believed to be without an appreciable risk of deleterious effects are currently estimated to be 3.0 µg acrylamide a day (http://www.epa.gov/iris). This level of dietary intake is exceeded in small subsets of the population, particularly in young children and adolescents. In their preliminary JECFA/64/SC report (http://www.who.int/ipcs/food/jecfa/summaries/ summary_report_64_final.pdf), the Joint Food and Agriculture Organization/World Health Organization (FAO/WHO) Expert Committee on Food Additives and Contaminants has therefore recommended reducing the acrylamide content of processed starchy foods. Recently developed methods to limit acrylamide formation require changes in grower or processor practices, which may limit their broad application. For instance, the beneficial effect of sulphur fertilization on lowering the acrylamide potential of potato and wheat is offset by increased farmer input costs and sulphur contamination issues. Furthermore, the partial decreases in acrylamide concentration that can be achieved by modifying processing variables, such as the time and temperature of heating, yield products that have lost some of their original color, flavor and/or texture, and may therefore be less appealing to consumers. A third approach incubates raw materials with either asparagine‐metabolizing enzymes or amino acids that compete with asparagine in the reaction. Such treatments have been shown to be only partially
effective for some raw food ingredients, require high concentrations of the additive, and are too difficult and costly to apply broadly. A preferred route to the reduction of acrylamide would be to shift to crops that are naturally poor in acrylamide precursors. However, there are currently no such varieties available that also display all the additional input, processing and quality traits demanded by the processing industry. Given the complexity of wheat, coffee and potato breeding, efforts to develop such new processing varieties will require 15 years or more. A faster route to decrease the acrylamide potential of food crops was established two years ago through genetic engineering. Reduced browning of processed products from these modified tubers correlated with an approximately two‐ to three‐fold decrease in acrylamide levels. In this article, an alternative approach for the production of low‐ acrylamide French fries and potato chips is described that does not alter their sensory characteristics. This new method is based on the tuber‐specific silencing of two genes in asparagine biosynthesis, and reduces the concentration of free asparagine by up to 95%.
FRENCH FRIES DANGEROUS TO MY HEALTH http://www.wisegeek.com/are‐french‐fries‐dangerous‐to‐my‐health.htm French fries may be tasty, but doctors have long warned against consuming them too often because of their hefty doses of both sodium and saturated fats. For dieters, French fries have long been a forbidden thing. Now there may be even more reason, given a report in 2005, to choose a healthier alternative to French fries. In late 2005, a survey study by several women’s hospitals, Harvard, and Brigham Young University evaluated nurses who had consumed French fries at least once weekly during early childhood. Those nurses who had eaten French fries on a weekly basis were 27% more likely to develop breast cancer as adults. While the study is not all‐inclusive, since it only studied one population, it does lead one to conclude that French fries may pose additional risks to developing one of the most difficult and life‐altering cancers. In response, many fast food companies began offering alternatives to French fries, such as fruit or vegetable servings. This study did not suggest that all “forbidden foods” pose the same potential risk. Women who ate hot dogs or ice cream, according to this survey were found to be at no additional risk for developing breast cancer. A similar study done in Sweden in 2002 suggested that heating certain starchy foods, like potatoes or breads tends to produce a chemical called acrylamide, which is thought to be a cancer causing substance. French fries and potato chips were particularly high in this substance, thus providing a potential link between French fries and cancer. However, the study, which included random samples, was not wide enough to warrant removal of such products from the market. 17
As well, the chemical seemed to be present whether a potato was baked or fried. This suggests one might still be at increased risk if one chooses oven French fries or a baked potato over a serving of French fries. In 2006, the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition further concluded that both potatoes and French fries seem to lead to an increased risk in the development of Type II diabetes. The risk was higher among women who were already obese. All these combined studies suggest that potatoes and French fries in particular may not be a good nutritional choice, and should be eaten sparingly. However, other studies have shown that starchy foods like baked potatoes do have some health benefits as well. In all cases, it would seem that most important is eating a varied diet, with few repetitions of potentially harmful foods.
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