Teacher's Tongue 'Eaten Away' After Drinking Six Energy Drinks a Day | 22 Words

Have you ever felt that 3 pm lull on a Thursday afternoon? It's been two hours since you last ate and you're starting to struggle to keep your eyes open... What do you reach for? A cup of coffee? A bar of chocolate? An energy drink?

We've definitely been guilty of grabbing a Red Bull or a can of Monster when we've needed a little energy boost, but after seeing the post that teacher, Dan Royals, posted on Facebook recently, we might start avoiding them...

Energy drinks often contain more sugar and caffeine than soda.

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So they seem like the perfect thing to pick up when you're in need of a little energy boost. But turns out, they can have pretty damaging effects. Keep scrolling to see the effects they can have on your body!

Energy drinks first became popular in Asia. 

In 1962, a Japanese pharmaceutical company called Taisho released a drink called Lipovitan D. It was designed to reduce fatigue to keep workers productive throughout the night. Lipovitan D contained taurine, a free form amino acid that occurs naturally in the human body. It's utilized by the body when a person is exercising or feeling stress - that's why it works so well in energy drinks.

The first "energy drink" to hit the US market was called Jolt Cola.

It was really more of a soda, but it contained more caffeine and sugar than your average can of cola. It contained "carbonated water, sugar and/or high fructose corn syrup, caramel color, phosphoric acid, caffeine, citric acid and natural flavors."

In the 1990s and the 2000s, energy drinks like Red Bull, Monster and Rockstar became increasingly popular in the US.

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According to Caffeine Informer, Red Bull is now the most popular energy drink in the USA.

You won't believe how much of it was sold last year!

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It was enough to make over 4.5 million dollars in sales!

And the total dollar sales for energy drinks in the USA is pretty shocking too!

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It was $10,919,392,609 in 2018 - a 7.5% increase from the previous year! That's a lot of energy drinks.

What does that say about us?

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Mostly that we are one sleepy nation. And that our health is probably not all that great...

Energy drinks affect our bodies in different ways to soda.

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Time Magazine reported the results of a 2017 study published in the Journal of the American Heart Association. 

And the results were pretty worrying.

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Eighteen men and women were split into two groups of nine. One group was given a thirty-two ounce energy drink containing three-hundred and twenty milligrams of caffeine as well as other ingredients such as taurine and ginseng. The other group was given a can of soda, again thirty-two ounce, containing the same amount of caffeine. It also contained lime juice, cherry syrup and carbonated water rather than the supplements found in energy drinks.

Blood pressure and heart activity were monitored.

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Participants had their blood pressure and heart activity measured before consuming their respective drinks, one hour after, then two, then four, then six, and, finally, twenty-four hours after consumption.

The results have really made us think (but not quite as much as Royal's picture has!).

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The energy drink raised those who drank it's QT interval by ten milliseconds. That means it took ten milliseconds longer for their hearts' ventricles to get ready to beat again than it usually would...

That might not sound like much, but...

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Medicines that raise QT intervals by six milliseconds have to carry a warning label. It's not sounding too good for energy drinks now is it?

Both groups' blood pressure was raised after consuming their drinks, but it never got to the point that they were abnoramlly high.

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But the blood pressure of those that consumed the soda returned to baseline somewhere around the six-hour mark, whereas that of those who drank the energy drink didn't lower until after that mark.

So what does all of this mean?

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Well, it means that it's not all down to caffeine. Sure, copious amounts of sugar and caffeine are pretty bad for you, but ingredients like taurine and ginseng are the things that might be causing real trouble for our insides - although we do want to quickly note that sodas aren't something that you should be drinking often either!

Here's what study author, Emily Fletcher, has to say about it all...

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“Consumers should be aware that drinking an energy drink is not the same as drinking coffee or soda."

But it doesn't necessarily mean that we have to stop drinking energy drinks altogether.

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“I would recommend only moderate consumption of energy drinks and particular avoidance in people with underlying cardiac disease or hypertension," Fletcher says, “or during activities that would also increase your blood pressure and heart rate, such as exercise or sports."

If these facts and figures aren't quite convincing you, wait until you see what effect energy drinks had on Dan Royals!

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It's not pretty...

Maybe we're vain but...

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We're a little more convinced to quit drinking energy drinks when we see things like this.

Teacher, Dan Royals, posted this picture to Facebook recently.

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He's claimed it's all down to energy drinks - and he drinks a lot of them! At least six a day, according to his Facebook post! He puts this down to a "lack of energy teaching kids usually."

We cringe everytime we see that picture.

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It looks so painful!

Royals does smoke, but, other than that, he claims to look after himself pretty well.

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"I actually do care for my oral health but this is purely from these drinks… I do smoke but has nothing to do with the eating away of my tongue," he said in the post.

Now we can visualize what our insides look like...

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Royals added, "That’s what that s*** does to your tongue, imagine what’s it like on your internals?"

It's probably due to the acidity of the drinks and, of course, the high sugar content.

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The World Health Organization told the Metro, "A study in the US showed that dental cavities can result from the acidic pH and high-sugar content of products such as energy drinks." And it looks like it's damaging our tongues, too!

Yes, sugar and caffeine (both of which are also found in soda) are a problem...

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But it seems like the other ingredients are playing a vital role in damaging both our insides and our outsides, too. Ingredients such as taurine, carnitine and creatine are added to energy drinks to supply energy, but they're also what's making the drinks acidic and it's ruining our bodies!

And this isn't the first time we've seen something like this!

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In February this year, Vinnie Pyner shared a similar story.

Eugh

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Pyner was also addicted to energy drinks. He started to drink them to give him energy while studying at college.

It really affected his confidence.

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Pyner stopped going to classes because he was so embarrassed by his teeth. "I never thought that it would get this bad", he said, "it’s affected my confidence dramatically. I had the ambition to become a games designer, but now my hopes have been dashed."

"I didn’t think much about it until I swallowed something hard before realizing that my upper four teeth had broken off."

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Pyner's dentist said that it was one of the worst cases of tooth decay that she had ever seen!

He's stopped drinking energy drinks now.

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But it's going to take a lot of work to get his teeth looking as they once did. He's going to have to wear dentures and have at least twenty-four fillings!

We really feel for these guys...

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The American Beverage Association said in a statement to Time Magazine that “energy drinks have been extensively studied and confirmed safe for consumption by government safety authorities worldwide including a recent review by the European Food Safety Authority." But we think we'll think twice before picking up an energy drink after this!