>> Friday, January 13, 2012
Happy Friday the 13th! I'm not superstitious so bring it on. :)
Confession: I used to drink Mountain Dew. Note the words used to. It’s been at least four+ years since I last had a sip, but I used to drink more than my fair share (I ain’t kiddin’ folks). Where some drink lots o’beer or Gatorade or Red Bull or Dr. Pepper or Coke or whatever, I drank Mountain Dew. That was my vice but since I didn't drink alcohol, what's the harm in a daily shot of MD? I’d go to Costco and buy cases or stop at the store and pick up a pack if it was on sale, “it’s a good deal!” I’d say. Many of my friends were dew-heads and we’d party-harty downing the dew and chasing it with tons of Smarties then filling up my fireplace with the empty cans (crazy kids). You know, pyramid style or whatever fancied our creativity (like that tree). Just silly mayhem, really. I didn’t think much of it then.
Silly young me. What shit that was! Excuse my language but it was and still is.
Check out Mountain Dew's ingredients:
Carbonated water, high fructose corn syrup, concentrated orange juice, citric acid, natural flavor, sodium benzoate (preservative), caffeine, sodium citrate, erythorbic acid (preservative), gum arabic, calcium disodium EDTA (preservative), brominated vegetable oil, and Yellow 5.
Let’s break some of these ingredients down:
HFCS, despite what the corn industry and others want you to believe that this a natural and safe ingredient, it isn’t. Plain and simple, it’s poison. It causes diabetes, obesity and no doubt contributes to a whole host of other diseases and problems. Plus, it contains contaminants, including mercury, that are not regulated by the FDA (source).
Sodium benzoate. Labeled as a preservative but um, it causes cancer (source).
Sodium citrate. A preservative. Also used to treat metabolic acidosis and some kidney problems by neutralizing excess acid in the blood, urine and other bodily functions. It can cause involuntary, uncontrollable muscle spasms or contractions, diarrhea, nausea and vomiting or worse. It’s also an anti-coagulant (source and source).
Calcium disodium EDTA. How ‘bout that, another preservative! Helps maintain flavor and color. But in addition, it can cause intestinal upsets, muscle cramps, kidney damage, and blood in urine (source and source). Sweet.
Brominated Vegetable oil (BVO): Used as an emulsifier in citrus-based drinks but turns out it disrupts the thyroid function aaand it’s a flame-retardant. Mmm, nummy. It’s actually banned in many European countries, but not here. No sirree! It is composed mainly of bromine, a poisonous chemical whose vapors are considered both corrosive and toxic; also known as a carcinogen (source and source).
Yellow #5 – Tartrazine. It’s artificial (made from coal tar), that right there should tell you it’s not good. Causes migraines, blurred vision, depression, anxiety, hives, hyperactivity, asthma, and other things...you know, no biggie stuff (source and source).
Then on top of all of this, there are 170 calories in a 12 oz can, 54 milligrams of caffeine, 65 milligrams of sodium and 46 grams of sugar (straight from the source).
Oh and it can dissolve a mouse. Now, there’s something to be proud of. :/
Let me just point out real quick, this post is not to say I'm better than you or anyone else. It's also not to say I'm perfect. I'm far from it, actually. I learn as I go and still cave into foods and drinks I shouldn't. This just happened to strike a cord with me because I used to drink so much of it without even a thought.
I am so glad I’m no longer a dew-head. Or, a heavy pop drinker for that matter (I do sample once in awhile but usually something more healthy). Mountain Dew isn’t the only one that's bad for your health.
Some nay-sayers reading this might say that this is just as much garbage as those empty cans once filling up my fireplace or that I'm being overly dramatic. It's just a soft drink, right? Yeah, but day after day? Hey, it’s your life and your body. But, please reconsider. Do your own research. You just might find it's not worth it to drink this. If it’s a fizzy drink you crave, I suggest making your own natural version with mineral water and fresh citrus or reading labels and finding a healthy alternative.
I’m done here. Stay healthy!