Americans Are Drinking More Soda Than Ever

May 17, 2012
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Americans are drinking more soda than ever before. They drink it for various reasons. They drink it because it tastes good and is refreshing. It also gives people an energy lift. Is the energy lift claim fact or fiction? Soda has been around for more than two hundred years. The term "soda water" was first coined back in 1798. In 1851, Ginger Ale was created in Ireland. Also in 1876, Root Beer was mass produced for public sale. In 1885, Charles Aderton invented "Dr. Pepper" in Waco, Texas. In 1886, Coca-Cola was invented in Atlanta, Georgia. We think the product will stand up to its claims. We think this because the product has caffeine and caffeine gives you energy. We are going to be testing the effects of caffeine on blood pressure and pulse.

What does the research tells us about the health effects of drinking caffeine soda? According to Betty Kovacs, MS, RD who wrote an article in Medicine Net.com, it can have some negative health effects. Kovacs states that studies have shown that soft drinks can cause an increase in blood pressure or arrhythmias (when the heart beats with an irregular rhythm). She also said, “The blood pressure elevations are said to be short lived, lasting no more than several hours and are comparable to modest elevations experienced climbing a flight of stairs...”. Research also says that caffeine is associated with anxiety and insomnia. Different sodas have different amounts of caffeine in them. For example, 12oz. of Mountain Dew contains 54mg of caffeine, Pepsi Max contains 69mg, and Coca Cola has 34 mg.

People disagree about whether caffeine is addicting. Kovacs says that there are withdrawal symptoms in adults, like headache, tiredness, sleepiness, and difficulty concentrating, but she can't say for sure that this is true for children and teens.

Drinking soda with caffeine will not cause serious health risk in most people, but it probably will increase your blood pressure or could cause an irregular heartbeat. It may or may not cause withdrawal symptoms. In other words a can of soda once in a while would be ok, but you probably shouldn’t be drinking liters of soda a day.





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