A recent study found that soda is linked to heart failure in men, reported the Independent on Nov. 3. Guys who drink two or more sugary beverages a day–even artificially sweetened diet pop–increase their risk of heart failure by 23 percent. So have a heart, dude: drop the pop! Do it for your loved ones. Do it for yourself. Do it for the dog, whatever, just heed the warning now before it’s too late. Maybe you think this is just another soda boogyman. You’ve heard the scares: that soda pop makes you fat and tired, that it lowers your sex drive, yada yada. But this is not just hype. This is your body’s motherboard they’re talking about.
So why all the fizz about soda? No one can probably argue that all that sugar–45-60 grams per can of Coke–is good for you. Uncaffeinated pop will kill you with the sugar alone. But coupled with caffeine in diet colas and Mountain Dew, soda pop is a cardiac time bomb looking for a place to explode. Yes, diet pop is just as bad as a sugary beverage, heart-wise. Then some people have the foolhardiness to mix sugary beverages with booze. So you the bomb blast of sugar with the heart-pounding rush of caffeine followed by the resounding crash and burn of alcohol. That is some spooky Molotov cocktail.
That’s pretty much the conclusion researchers at the Stockholm Karolinska Institutet came to. They tracked the food habits of 42,000 Swedish men over 12 years of age. They found that men who drank at least two diet pop or sugary beverages a day had a nearly one-quarter greater risk of going into cardiac failure. And remember, men, when scientists talk “two beverages” they mean two normal size servings of 8 ounces at most. They aren’t referring to 2-liter bottles of pop or super-sized fountain beverages. One Big Gulp contains roughly 4-6 real-people size servings of soda. So if you’re drinking a couple of those honkers a day, multiply your heart failure risk accordingly.
So what is “heart failure” exactly? It’s a deadly problem that some 6 million Americans and counting live with. More than half of those will be dead within five years and 75 percent will be gone in 10. “Heart failure” happens when the heart isn’t strong enough to pump enough blood and oxygen to support the body. How does it feel to live with a cardiac failure? Miserable, say doctors of cardiac medicine–heart failure patient are severely limited in daily activities. They get short of breath just doing little tasks. Their legs swell, they have chronic chest pain. There’s a connection between drinking soda and stroke too. So men, do everyone a favor and limit your intake of sugary beverages just for the cardiac health of it! Ladies, you should too!