Today on the BBC there is a report of how one woman who reportedly drank up to ten litres of coca-cola a day has died of a cardiac arrest.
What a pity.
The woman in New Zealand drank so much of this shit that she had had most of her teeth extracted over the years and it had even prevented her unborn children from forming enamel on their teeth too. According to the article ten litres a day is twice the recommended daily caffeine intake and eleven times the recommended daily sugar intake.
I guess in a way we ought to feel sorry for her as this was clearly some form of addiction or obsessive behaviour and friends and family should have taken it upon themselves to get her treated for this. As per usual there are some who are trying to blame Coca~Cola for the death, but I think it goes beyond reasonable risk assessments to assume someone out there would consume that kind of amount.
The media however should currently be doing their utmost to highlight the possible dangers of aspartame which is present in a wide range of products. It is an artificial sweetener used in diet-drinks and in most products labelled as 'no added sugar'. This would include products such as 'Diet Coke', Coke Zero, Pepsi Max, and many other products you possibly wouldn't consider such as Robinson's cordial juice which of course is generally the drink of choice by millions of children in the UK.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8939194 (An old scientific report calling for review in '96.)
Despite these concerns, the European Food Safety Authority and the Food and Drugs Administration in the USA have both approved this substance fit for human consumption once again. The EU came to an agreement on this just last year in fact:
"On 8 January 2013, EFSA launched a public consultation on its draft
scientific opinion on the safety of the artificial sweetener aspartame.
To carry out this full risk assessment, EFSA has undertaken an in-depth
review of peer-reviewed scientific and other literature on aspartame and
its breakdown products, including new human studies. All stakeholders
and interested parties are invited to comment on the draft opinion
through the online public consultation by 15 February 2013. As part of
this important process and the Authority’s commitment to actively
engaging with stakeholders, EFSA will also hold a meeting with
interested parties to discuss its draft opinion and the feedback
received from the online public consultation. EFSA prepared a set of
Frequently Asked Questions to help explain some of the key scientific
concepts and initial conclusions of the draft opinion."
Well as great as this sounds there is still some cause for concern with regards to this little compound. The biggest concern being the links to Monsanto.
As Monsanto deserves an article in its own right, check the wiki page for a general idea:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Monsanto (Pay particular attention to the 'political contributions and lobbying' section.)
Monsanto sold the Aspartame rights to Merisant in 2000, who have now sold to a group which now includes PepsiCo. But Merisant was brought by shareholders who already had stakes in Monsanto before, so it can hardly be said that the financial interests behind Monsanto are not still with the new owners.
Long story short, Monsanto and other GM and artificial food producers are getting into bed with politicians and getting campainers to support untested food to the public through Governments. Bribery and officials 'looking the other way' are rife.
Here is just one such example which was reported.
The other concern to do with soft-drinks are energy drinks of which Monster Energy has recently come under scrutiny with after some deaths had some links with the consumption with their drinks.
The owner of the company Rodney Sacks claimed the people who were trying to claim for damages were 'scientifically ignorant' for suggesting these deaths had anything to do with his beverages. Well no mate, this is why departments are currently reviewing your product to see if scientifically these claims have any basis.
In any case would you trust ingredients like these: l-carnitine, sorbic acid, benzoic acid, niacinamide, glucuronolactone, inositol, , pyridoxine, hydrochloride, sucralose, riboflavin, maltodextrin, cyanocobalamin
If it needed a laboratory to create its probably not the best thing to be knocking back with your Jäger.