Sunday, November 13, 2011

The SHOCKING Ingredients In a Mountain Dew


When I wrote the popular blog entry, The SHOCKING Ingredients in a McRib Sandwich, I figured that the chemicals I found were mostly limited to fast food restaurants. I then began to look at some of the foods in my home explored the ingredients. I was shocked at what I found.

FEATURED BOOK ON MOUNTAIN DEW:  Mountain Dew: The History

I believe that we have become accustomed when selecting to food to do so based on name brand, taste, type of food, and perhaps a glance at the nutrition label (e.g., calories, fat, salt content). If we do look at the ingredients, we may see some with some long names, shrug our shoulders, and figure they are safe. They may be safe in small quantities, but I have to wonder if consuming large quantities of artificial chemicals over time causes health problems. Most of us are busy and want food that is already prepared to speed things up. But in order for that to happen, many manufacturers also cut corners to deliver foods and drinks in mass because it is much more efficient to do so. This is why all natural products usually cost more money.

I am going to begin documenting on this blog some of the troubling ingredients in foods and drinks I have had in my house, have regularly consumed in the past, and that I have now thrown out and replaced with other natural products. Most people do not have the time or energy to research what these products are, so I will do the work for you. All you need to do is spread the word (email, Facebook, Twitter), consider the information, and make an informed decision about what you want to put in your body. Without further ado, the product I am going to begin with is…

MOUNTAIN DEW: This popular drink is known for its high level of caffeine and fruity taste. But it also contains…

1. EDTA (ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid). This is sometimes uses as a preservative in foods (under the name calcium disodium EDTA) to prevent food discoloration. I remember hearing about it in the OJ Simpson when it was discussed as chemical used in test tubes to prevent blood from clumping together. To be fair, EDTA has some positive health benefits in specific situations (e.g., treatment of lead and mercury poisoning), since it removes metals from the body. However, the chemical is known to be a persistent organic pollutant, which means that they do not naturally degrade in the environment, are capable of accumulating in living tissue, and causing negative health effects. Studies with laboratory animals have found that EDTA is toxic to cells, is slightly toxic to genes, and that consuming the material orally has negative effects on reproduction and development.

2. BROMINATATED VEGETABLE OIL (BVO): This is a perfect example of a tricky ingredient because most people will read it and thing it is not a problem since it is vegetable oil, skipping over the word "brominated." Brominated means that this is vegetable oil that contains the chemical, bromine. It is used as an emulsifier in many citrus-flavored soft drinks. An emulsifier is a substance that allows foods to mix together. It does this by thickening the oil so that it is as dense as the water in the drink. India has banned the use of BVO from its soft drinks and it is not an approved additive in Europe.

Bromine and/or forms of bromine are used in pesticides, disinfectants, flame retardants, as a gasoline additive, and for swimming pool maintenance. Its use has been limited in the U.S. but is still contained in some food products. Bromine has no known essential role in human health.

3. SODIUM BENZOATE: A food preservative that has been inconsistently associated with hyperactivity and is theorized to cause cell malfunction. In response to health concerns, the Coca Cola company is phasing it out of Diet Coke and some of its other beverages.

4. YELLOW # 5: This is a type of man-made chemical food coloring. Many companies try to avoid using it because of potential health effects. First, it is known to cause allergies, particularly among people with asthma and aspirin intolerance. It is associated with anxiety, asthma attacks, hives (fewer than 1 in 10,000 people), clinical depression, migraines, blurry vision, itching, general weakness, heatwaves, feeling of suffocation, purple skin patches, and sleep disturbance. It may also be associated with hyperactivity, irritability, restlessness, thyroid tumors, and chromosome damage. Health effects can occur even in very small doses. About 360,000 Americans are sensitive to yellow #5, which is about 0.12% of the population. Although yellow #5 is associated with the problems above, whether yellow #5 causes some of the more extreme health effects is controversial, especially among people who are not intolerant to it.

In laboratory animals, yellow #5 affects behavior, inflames the stomach lining, and affects and alters chemical in vital organs (e.g., liver and kidney). The latter is true even at low doses. In England, the Food Standards Agency called on the voluntary removal of yellow # 5 from food and drink due to concerns over possible health effects. In the U.S., the Food and Drug Administration is so concerned about yellow #5 that it mandates that it be listed as an ingredient, insists on the batch of coloring be pre-approved by the FDA, and will actually seize products that do not list it in the ingredients when they soon have or did not have the batch pre-approved. Yellow # 5 was banned in Norway, Austria, and Germany but the ban was eventually overturned.

11 comments:

  1. I drink around five sometimes six or more mountain dews a day. I have problems sleeping I sleep walk and do crazy stuff all the while not knowing what I had done until the morning. I have short term memory loss. I have been drinking mountain dew for years. Do u think its the cause? My email is littlehen33@gmail.com

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    1. Try drink 6 redbulls a day you also have trouble sleeping it's called "cafeïne" haha

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    2. You probably are experiencing the side effects of bromine (used in the Brominated Vegetable Oil (BVO) which causes memory loss, fatigue, ptosis of the right eye, and other items. Look up BVO on Wikipedia.

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    3. It would be highly improbable for a chemical to cause unilateral or one-sided problems in either a nerve (the oculomotore nerve) or a muscle (a single levator palpebra). Caffeine has half-life of almost 8 hours. As a crude estimate that means that if you drank six sodas, say from 10am to 6pm (the center is 2pm), then at 10pm there are still 3 sodas in your body. At 6am the next morning there are still 1.5 sodas in your body, and so on every 8 hours.

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  2. That is definitely alot of Mountain Dew and that much caffeine intake can lead to sleep problems. Poor sleep can lead to memory complaints. I've never head of Mountain Dew causing people to do crazy stuff, sleep walking, and not knowing what they did until the morning. My best suggestion is to go for a neuropsychological evaluation.

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  3. Actually caffeine intake when dehydrated can have the opposite effect on the body, and make you sleepy. I've had many energy drinks at the end of a day or very potent coffee, 5 hour energy, went and laid down and went to sleep without any problems.

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  4. I don't drink anything besides mountain dew or some type of soda. I don't drink milk or water. They both taste gross to me. Whenever I go through a school day without soda, I feel fatigued and my mouth gets really watery when I think about getting a soda. Is there a possibility that I am addicted to mountain dew?

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    1. Yes you are addicted to soda.....
      Up to 60% of the human adult body is water, the brain and heart are composed of 73% water, and the lungs are about 83% water. This being said, not drinking water is like not changing the oil in your car. Your body needs water to flush out toxins and for your cells to function properly, and help your liver and kidney function properly, not to mention your brain too. You will most likely notice better concentration when you start drinking water instead. Drinking soda only is causing your liver and kidneys to be overworked and stressed in order to filter out all the crap in the soda to try to provide your body with a clean fluid to utilize. Your mouth probably waters when you think about getting a soda because what it really needs is WATER. Keep this in mind.....sugar feeds cancer, there are many studies done on the negative affects sugar has on the body. You should drink at least 64 oz of water a day at the very least. Don't drink tap water since it tastes gross and has chlorine and other harmful chemicals in it. Drink bottled water or filtered water. you can make the water taste more pleasant by adding a lemon or a lime, cucumber, or an orange. If you don't lay off the sodas you are going to run into some serious health issues sooner than you think.

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  5. My daughters had severe anxiety and sickness as a result of this drink, including Baja Blast, which is the Mountain Dew at Taco Bell. Both my 16 year old and 9 year old. My 17 year old tolerates it well. My girls can't.

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  6. Okay, that is it. No more Mountain Dew, and probably less soda in general. Next thing to tackle: Java Monster. The Local Mocha flavor is probably the most popular, and I am pretty sure there are addicts in every city who won't buy the other flavors because it seems to sell out much quicker than anything else.

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  7. Fun fact: Studies have shown that drinking Mountain Dew every other day, slowly turns your gut inside out.

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Your comments are welcome.