Tag Archives: mineral balance

Effect on heart rate: Comparing Energy Beverages to Sports Drinks

No Energy Beverages are banned in the USA, says an National Institute of Health literature search review entitled, “Energy Beverages: Content and Safety.  For this review the researchers searched databases from 1976 to study the effects of sports beverages that claimed an ability to aid performance, muscle growth and recovery.

The inventor of Gatorade, Dr. Robert Cade, a sports Professor at Gainsville, Florida, is credited as being the pioneer in the area of sports drinks that replenished electrolytes and carbohydrates.  The popularity and fame of his invention followed him around the world until he died at the age of 80 because he came up with a supplemented drink that helped the Gator football players deal with the sweltering heat of Gainsville, Florida. You may click here to read more about the inventor, Dr. Cade and his invention.

There was one problem with Professor Cade’s replenishing drink: it tasted like bodily fluids and the players tended to spit it out. You see, Professor Cade was researching the kidney in the medical division and noticing that players did not urinate enough during or after a game, he came up with a solution to keep the players healthy. His top priority was health and not taste. Soon college teams playing against the Gator team realized that their teams were losing in the sweltering heat because their players were not replenished by Professor Cade’s “bodily waste” drink. The international giant, Pepsico, bought the rights to the drink called “Gatorade” today and the royalties are keeping the inventor, his team and the University of Gainsville happy.

Gatorade replenished carbohydrates in the form of sugars sucrose and glucose and electrolytes in the form of sodium and potassium salts. Today, there are many kinds of sports and energy beverages that add far more than what is necessary for a healthy performing kidney. Infact, many might be unhealthy. Some are suspected to be deadly depending on the genes inherited by the consumer. Long term exposure to certain Energy Beverages may cause significant changes to the cardiovascular system. In other words, some sports drinks might be unhealthy for the heart when used regularly for a longer time.

If you are concerned and are asking the question, “Is this Energy Beverage or Sports Drink safe for me to consume daily when I exercise?” then, you might want to read the results summarized by NIH researchers by clicking here.. It might save your life. It might keep your heart and kidneys healthy.

Red Bull, a very highly caffeinated sports beverage was introduced in Austria in 1987 and then to USA in 1997.  Since then the Energy Beverage market has exploded.  Red Bull commanded 65% share of the 650 million dollar market in 2005 but now has many competitors.  The USA is the largest consumer of Energy Beverages.  11 to 35 years olds are most likely to be consumers of Energy Beverages.  The regulations in the USA are very lax in banning such replenished beverages.  This research article shows alarmingly drinking such beverages is associated with risky behavior lifestyles. The review offers recommendations specific to populations and groups since genetics and age are factors to be considered, as Professor Cade had discovered in his pioneering, replenishing drink.

In the memory of this kidney researcher whose goal was to keep players safe in sweltering heat, let’s continue to keep the drinks safe and the users healthy and alive.

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Pumpkin is mildly diuretic – so eat in moderation

Of the pumpkin’s 131 volatile compounds what is striking is variety and magnitude of the nine carbon compounds say the scientists of General Food Corporation of New York. Pumpkins (Cucurbita pepo ) of the family Cucurbitaceae includes Pumpkins, squashes, cucumbers and melons. They were probably a diet member of ancient American Indians and originated in the Americas.

A delicious Pumpkin Pie – An American Tradition

Pumpkins and their seeds have several health benefits. Notably they are zinc rich and the seeds are iron rich and B vitamin and trace minerals and aminoacids (cucurbitin) and chlorophyll pigments. The principle medicinal properties of the pumpkin plant are in the seeds, says Dr. Armando Gonzalez Stuart, in “Pumpkin seeds“.  The article discusses clinical studies employing pumpkin seeds, history, active principles and applications in herbals therapy. You may also read, “The nutritive, medicinal, and diuretic properties of pumpkin flour“.

So, should you eat these in large quantities?

The answer is eat pumpkins but since each body is individually different judge how much pumpkin you can eat and feel healthy. It is a mild diuretic! Diuretics play the role of removing water from your body in the form of urine. You will lose important minerals from kidneys and it may result in mineral imbalance. Definitely include pumpkin and pumpkin seeds in your diet but in moderation.

Chocolate Molten Lava Cake with Pumpkin Icing

Pumpkin Art at the New York Botanical Garden

Then, watch out for the following diuretic symptoms:

1) Advantages of diuretics – less bloated feeling and often prescribed to protect heart patients in tablet formulations;

2) Natural diuretics aid body in flushing toxins and breaking down fat – so general feeling of health;

Pumpkins Good for Balanced Diet and Health

3) Headaches, dizziness and fainting – from mineral imbalance from eating too much or more than an individual body can handle which is different for different people and genetically defined;

Too much Pumpkin?

4) Muscle cramps

Also, pumpkin may react with herbal and other medicine you may be concurrently taking.

Please, don’t get me wrong. Pumpkin is among the healthiest food items you can include in your diet. However, watch out for symptoms like increased knee pain or stomach cramps after a diet overloaded in pumpkin, such as an entire pumpkin pie versus a single slice or two perhaps.

The Pumpkin Puppet Theater at the New York Botanical Garden

For more fabulous pumpkin photos click here

Related Article:
The nutritive, medicinal and diuretic properties of Pumpkin flour


Filed under FAT free diet, Health, Herbs, Uncategorized