Monday, 16 March 2009

Think Before You Drink

This blog post is for all of you out there who still drink soft carbonated drinks as a 'treat'( or for any other reason!).

I see this alot with having kids, parents letting their child have a coke as a treat, and in limited quantites (80/20 rule) this is fine. Don't get me wrong, by the way, my kids love sweets and confectionery as much as any other, but thankfully we've managed to steer clear of the dreaded fizz!(although their dad does drink it and I can't persuade him otherwise).

I read a really funny article the other day in a magazine on alternative cleaning products. One suggestion for cleaning the toilet, was to use Coca Cola. Apparently if you have a stained toilet and you pour a can of coke down it, leave it over night and then flush (you may need to assist this process with a brush depending....) your toilet will look as good as new!

Apparently it's all down to the acidity of the coke! So what's it doing to our insides then when we consume gallons of the stuff?! think about it.........

It was a tongue in cheek article but I tried it the other day and it worked a treat. Better to use it for cleaning toilets and polishing bumpers on cars (another useful tip) than for pouring down your gullet. Why?..........because it soooooooooo bad for you in any great quantity, and you really don't need it. No you really don't need it.

Apart from colourings, flavourings, and artificial sweeteners in the case of Diet Coke, soft drinks and energy drinks tend to include relatively large amouunts of caffeine. And the downsides of lots of caffeine are :

Raised blood sugar, giving you an energy spike and then shortly after an energy slump - when you reach for another drink.....

Heartburn and other digestive problems, from bloating to IBS.

A horrible coating on your teeth and tongue. Yuk!

Its a diuretic, making you lose water, leading to dehydration.

It overstimulates the nervous system, leading to allsorts of nasties from irritability, insomnia, rapid and irregular hearbeat and in extreme cases a risk of a heat attack.

May contain pesticides used during the growing of the coffee beans, and these contain cancer causing compounds (so choose organic caffeinated drinks if you have to drink them).

On the caffeinated drinks scale Coco Cola is not top of the list for the amount of caffeine it contains per can,34mg. An 8oz regular coffee will contain anywhere between 60-120mg of caffeine, and a regular cup of tea approx 45mg.With the recommended 'safe' levels of daily caffeine consumption currently standing at around 300mg it's easy to 'overdose' if you're a regular fizzy drink and Starbucks merchant.

Dark chocolate unfortunately also contains caffeine (my vice and I refuse to give it up, but it is somewhat self limiting), with 1oz of the yummy stuff containing approx 20mg. However, you do get the added benefits of antioxidants and flavanoids if you pick the good organic stuff.

Worth thinking about giving up the fizz ..........? Especially when cold fresh water and herbal teas taste so good, why bother with the sugary/artificially sweetened/non nutrient stuff?

Oh and also in the article I read, and equally as tongue in cheek as the loo cleaning tip, you can use shampoo to clean limescale off the bath tub, biological washing powder to remove food from a saucepan, and indigestion tablets to unblock a plughole!!

Today's Tip : Sit down and drink a large glass of pure, clear, fresh water and tell me you didn't enjoy it.

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