Ask any adult would they allow their child to drink a bottle of beer a day, and I am sure the answer would be 100% NO, but ask do they allow their child to drink fizzy, sports or energy drinks every day and the answer may not be quite so resoundingly no.
However, shockingly, the long term effects of a bottle of beer a day or a bottle of fizzy soda a day, are much closer than you would expect.
We all know that alcohol is a toxin, too much alcohol and we get drunk. Acute alcohol poisoning, in extreme cases, can lead to death and this is why alcohol is controlled and age limited.
Ethanol (the main ingredient in alcohol) is metabolised in three main areas: 10% brain, 10% in various organs, and 80% in the liver. The liver is an amazing organ used to deal with many harmful toxins in the body
It is the 10% metabolised in the brain that leads to the familiar drunken behaviour and anyone who has suffered a hangover will know its toxic effects. We also know that long term overconsumption of alcohol can have serious health consequences.
|ACUTE EFFECTS OF ALCOHOL||CHRONIC EFFECTS OF ALCOHOL|
|Central Nervous System Depression||Fatty Liver Disease|
|Motor Control Loss (why we can’t drive)||Pancreatitis|
|Blood Vessel Dilation||Heart Disease|
|Hypothermia||Hypertension (High Blood Pressure)|
|Rapid Heart Rate||High Blood Triglycerides|
|(*) Why you are thirst and need sugar when hungover||Electrolytic Abnormalities|
Fizzy drinks contain sugar, the chemical name of what we commonly call sugar is sucrose, a joined molecule of glucose and fructose. These are quickly split when digested and released into the bloodstream.
Of the glucose in the bloodstream: 80% is absorbed by various organs, muscles and is used as energy, about 20% is transported into the liver, where it is converted to glycogen,a store for future energy needs, and about 1/50th is converted to body fat.
Fructose diffuses from the blood into the liver, without the need of insulin. It too is metabolised to provide energy however a massive 30% of the fructose is converted to fat, some is exported from the liver into the body, some remains in the liver. Both fat deposits are unhealthy!
The liver metabolises 100% of the fructose and the effect on the liver is strikingly similar to that of alcohol:
CHRONIC EFFECT OF FRUCTOSE:
- Fatty Liver Disease
- Heart disease
- High Blood Triglycerides
Alcohol and fructose are NOT NECESSARY FOR ANY BIOCHEMICAL REACTION IN THE BODY, we can survive without ever ingesting them, both are dealt with mainly in the liver, the organ our body uses to deal with toxins. It is an amazing organ and can easily deal with the occasional drink or hit of sugar, but prolonged chronic exposure to either of these will damage the liver.
ALCOHOL AND FRUCTOSE ARE CHRONIC, DOSE DEPENDANT, HEPATOTOXINS.
So if you wouldn’t allow your child a beer a day, why would you allow them a daily fizzy drink? While they won’t get drunk, all the other damaging long term effects are pretty much the same.
As an occasional treat, fizzy drinks are fine, but on a regular basis, they will harm your health. And this includes the big chain, milkshakes, flavoured coffees, fancy frappuccinos and even blended smoothies, all packed with fructose, all these will make you fat and damage your liver.
Water is an amazing liquid, so good it makes up about 60% of our body and 70% of our brain. In the past, if you felt thirsty, water was the natural choice. Thanks to the power and advertising clout of the drinks industry, nowadays people depend on the various fizzy drinks to quench thirst, with drinks machines everywhere, even in schools and leisure centres.
Give water a go, nothing is better for thirst, ditch the manufactured rubbish.
The argument always comes up that fructose is the main sugar in fruit, so how come fruit is healthy? The answer is simple, the fructose in fruit is locked up in fibre and that greatly reduces the amount of fructose absorbed. Fibre is a nutrient, necessary for the health of your gut bacteria as well as other benefits. Whole fruit also contains minerals and micronutrients that have health benefits.
So the comparison that the sugar industry roles out about the amount of sugar that can be extracted from an apple, compared to a chocolate bar, are deliberately misleading.