Caffeinated 'energy' drinks can cause heart problems

LONDON - "Energy" drinks which are so popular during physical exercise and even otherwise among children and younger adults can cause heart problems, a research said.

"People sometimes consume a number of these drinks one after the other. This situation can lead to a number of adverse conditions, including angina, cardiac arrhythmia (irregular heartbeat) and even sudden death," warned professor Milou-Daniel Drici from France, Khaleej Times reported. Speaking at the European Society of Cardiology (ESC) Congress, 2014, in Barcelona, Spain, he said that around 96 per cent of these drinks contain caffeine, with a typical 0.25litre holding as much as two espressos worth of caffeine.

"We found that caffeine syndrome was the most common problem. It is characterised by a fast heart rate (called tachycardia), tremor, anxiety and headache," he informed. Caffeine is one of the most potent agonists - a chemical that binds to a receptor and activates the receptor to produce a biological response - of the ryanodine receptors and leads to a massive release of calcium within cardiac cells. This can cause arrhythmias but also has effects on the heart's abilities to contract and to use oxygen.


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