Energy Drinks Causing Heart Problems???

  • BIG_N_TALL

    Posts: 2190

    Apr 10, 2010 7:50 AM GMT
    Yesterday, my cousin went to the emergency room because he was having chest pains. He is 21 and in good health - he jogs 1-2 miles everyday, and is a bodybuilder. When he got to the ER, his heart rate was 150 beats per minute (bpm), and the ER MD eventually determined that the lower portion of his heart was beating exceptionally quicker than the upper portion. I could give you the scientific, medical terminology, but I'll spare you the geek lingo.

    He then went to see a cardiologist, and the MD told him that energy drinks he is fond of more than likely caused his electrolytes to "go out of wack," and thus caused the electrical component of his heart to go haywire. He has been to a cardiologist before for high blood pressure, but he has had no other serious cardiovascular issues to speak of. Has anyone on RJ heard about energy drinks causing heart/electrolyte problems? I'm a sucker for Starbuck's double shot energy drinks, but I've never cared for any other brand of energy drink.
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    Apr 10, 2010 11:34 AM GMT
    Energy drinks contain large amounts of caffeine. After ingesting 200mg of caffeine, the following side effects may occur: heart palpitations, headaches, nausea, and most commonly the jitters. The palpitations felt are usually do to a rapid heart rate (tachyarrythmia). "Skipped beats" can also occur. "Skipped beats" can be felt and will make the pulse irregular. For the medically inclined, a "skipped beat" is actually not a missed beat but an an extra beat. The extra beat occurs because the heart is irritable from stimulant (caffeine).

    Here is a list of the caffeine amounts found in various drinks. 5150 Juice has 500 mg of caffeine in one serving icon_eek.gif
    Starbucks double shot without coffee has 130 mg of caffeine

    http://www.energyfiend.com/the-caffeine-database

    If you are interested, here is a link to an article on energy drinks. This article mentioned the association of seizures with energy drinks

    http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/1688274/what_is_the_big_deal_with_energy_drinks.html?cat=71

    If your cousin is also drinking electrolyte sports drinks like Gatorade, he needs to be careful not to consume excess salt. Excess salt can make his high blood pressure harder to control. He should talk to his cardiologist about this.
  • BIG_N_TALL

    Posts: 2190

    Apr 11, 2010 2:16 AM GMT
    Thanks for the really in-depth info! I don't mind the geek speak haha
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    Apr 11, 2010 2:23 AM GMT
    Let me tell you one frozen drink that will make your heart wanna burst out of your chest...Mountain Dew Slushy. Never again.
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    Apr 11, 2010 2:52 AM GMT
    RYAN_SC saidYesterday, my cousin went to the emergency room because he was having chest pains. He is 21 and in good health - he jogs 1-2 miles everyday, and is a bodybuilder. When he got to the ER, his heart rate was 150 beats per minute (bpm), and the ER MD eventually determined that the lower portion of his heart was beating exceptionally quicker than the upper portion. I could give you the scientific, medical terminology, but I'll spare you the geek lingo.

    He then went to see a cardiologist, and the MD told him that energy drinks he is fond of more than likely caused his electrolytes to "go out of wack," and thus caused the electrical component of his heart to go haywire. He has been to a cardiologist before for high blood pressure, but he has had no other serious cardiovascular issues to speak of. Has anyone on RJ heard about energy drinks causing heart/electrolyte problems? I'm a sucker for Starbuck's double shot energy drinks, but I've never cared for any other brand of energy drink.


    I had the same/similar problem a while back, my bpm was 170... icon_eek.gif

    Was it supraventricular tachycardia?

    My cardiologist told me I basically just need to cut back/quit caffeine. It was difficult, but now that I have, my heart problems are gone icon_smile.gif
  • BIG_N_TALL

    Posts: 2190

    Apr 11, 2010 4:04 PM GMT
    The emergency room MD said the condition was a PVC - ventricular premature contraction . It's possible that caffeine had something to do with it; I was told the issue was electrolytes and energy drinks. If caffeine is the issue... I probably should have had a heart attack a long time ago...
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    Apr 11, 2010 8:50 PM GMT
    RYAN_SC saidThe emergency room MD said the condition was a PVC - ventricular premature contraction . It's possible that caffeine had something to do with it; I was told the issue was electrolytes and energy drinks. If caffeine is the issue... I probably should have had a heart attack a long time ago...


    Death has been reported from caffeine in energy drinks

    Red Bull may be the best selling energy drink in the United States, but it isn't so popular in other countries. In 2000, the French government decided to ban Red Bull after the brand was linked to the death of an 18-year-old Irish athlete. The teenager died after drinking four cans of Red Bull at a game. French laws dictate the maximum amount of caffeine that companies can add to products, and Red Bull exceeds that limit. Denmark and Norway have also banned the drink. Other countries, such as Canada, require the can to carry a warning label for pregnant women and children.
    http://recipes.howstuffworks.com/energy-drink.htm

    If the levels of potassium and or magnesium are low, one is predisposed to premature ectopic contractions like PVCs. Adding a stimulant to the mix, like caffeine or a nasal decongestant, compounds the problem. I used to give lectures on various electrolyte disorders. I'll spare you any additional geek speak.icon_smile.gif