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Tue. Jun 25th, 2024

People with certain genetic disorders may be at risk for heart attacks if they consume energy drinks

To establish this connection and ascertain whether comparable dangers are present in the broader population, more investigation is required.

According to recent research, individuals with inherited heart abnormalities may be at minor but considerable risk of suffering a life-threatening cardiac episode if they consume energy beverages.

In a recent study that was published in the journal Heart Rhythm, researchers from the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota examined 144 individuals who had recently survived sudden cardiac arrest and had a history of hereditary heart abnormalities.

It was observed that 7 individuals, or around 5% of the participants, had taken energy drinks before suffering a cardiac arrest. This finding raises the possibility of a connection between energy drink use and the health event.

In depth

Although the results are alarming enough to warrant additional investigation, the researchers warn that this is only a connection and that more thorough investigations will be needed to establish causation.

Energy drinks could be classified as “arrhythmogenic foods,” or foods that could induce cardiac arrhythmias, according to an editorial that accompanies the new research. Arrhythmogenic foods can be classified into three categories: dietary supplements that cause unpleasant cardiac reactions; recognised poisonous plants that contaminate food (basically poison); and, more recently, energy drinks that include caffeine and other substances that, under certain conditions, may cause arrhythmia.

For example, the editorial points out that the chemicals taurine and guarana, which are found in the majority of popular energy drinks, have both shown “proarrhythmic changes” in heart function.

Take away

The editorial authors stated that while the real risk [of energy drinks] for the general public may be minimal, it may be considerable for those with ischemic heart disease and channelopathies, many of whom are still asymptomatic and undiagnosed.

Although there isn’t conclusive evidence to support the association’s causality, common sense can still be useful in many situations: It’s most likely a duck if it swims and looks like a duck as well as quacks like one.

Approximately two persons per 100,000 may be at risk of sudden cardiac death due to an issue with their heart’s electrical circuitry. A family history of early-life unexplained mortality or a history of passing out are two indicators that a cardiac workup might be necessary.

By Parvathy Sukumaran

Parvathy Sukumaran is a Content Creator and Editor at JustCare Health. She is an Educator and a Language Lecturer. She holds a Bachelor's Degree in Education and an M.A in English Literature. She is passionate about writing, archaeology, music and cooking.

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