back to article Drop that can of sweet pop and grab a coffee - for your sanity's sake

Further proof - were it necessary - that strong unsweetened coffee is the only correct workplace beverage and that sickly imitation pop is the devil's own satanic brew has emerged this week. Boffins in the States have confirmed that sweetened and "diet" drinks are associated with a significantly heightened risk of mental illness …

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Moron Poison

Sad to see you marked down after taking on one of the Chimp's minders.

So I gave you one. I would have given you two. One for hitting at Donald Rumsfeld' company and corrupt politics and one for being right.

Unfortunately Internet forae are no place to be right.

(Unless you are a wing nut (with a penchant for bananas.))

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Re: Sweet Poison

Of course they don't.

The United States of Americans put it in their coke for them. How do you think the recipe is only known by two people when they have bottling plants all over the world?

Hint:

They make the syrup in the USA.

Please give me negative points. Points make prizes when they come from idiots like you.

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Re: HFCS popular in US because it's massively subsidised

HFCS is popular because we've been given little choice for most of the last 30 years or so. Real sugar sodas are making a comeback here though. PepsiCo calls theirs 'throwback' because real sugar soda hasn't been available in the US since the 80s. It tastes MUCH better than anything made with HFCS.

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Re: Moron Poison

Good one, Sir.

'Forae' are indeed no place to be right, and 'forae' is about as wrong as a forosum post (hey, I can play too) can be.

The usual English plural is 'forums'. If you must affect knowledge of Latin, the Latin nominative plural is 'fora'. In fact in all the forms of 'forum' including genitive, ablative and dative, 'forae' does not exist.

Nevertheless 'quidquid Latine dictum sit altum videtur', eh?

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FAIL

@some beggar

whoosh straight over your head there.

I didn't say it was a good rule of thumb just that I would prefer a natural product to a synthetic one.

You keep eating transfats and hydrogenated fats and I'll stick to saturated animal fats, thank you very much.

Opium, Hemlock, Belladonna - fair enough, I'm quite partial to several members of the nightshade family (potatoes, tomatoes, peppers...) but cyanide? has to be processed to extract it, ricin? has to be processed from castor beans.

Next!

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Re: @some beggar

And sugar has to be processed from sugar cane.

I didn't miss your point. You didn't make a point.

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Re: @some beggar

So you were just being objectionable for the sake of it?

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Re: @some beggar

@omgwftbbqtime

The idea that natural = good and artificial = bad is utterly moronic.

Is that less objectionable?

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Joke

Re: Sweet Poison

Hence the saying "Puts some lead in your pencil"?

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Re: @some beggar

Provided that you agree that the opposite (artificial =good and natural=bad is utterly moronic) holds true as well.

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Meh

great news!

So, if I stop drinking diet soda (and I do drink a fair amount on a daily basis), the facts that I live from paycheck to paycheck, barely scraping by, and am being hounded by collection agencies for the medical insurance deductables I can't afford to pay will no longer depress me? I can just laugh all that off?

At least I could then stop taking the anti-depressents I'm currently prescribed but if I wasn't drinking all that diet soda I wouldn't need them, I guess.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: great news!

Out of interest, how much does all that diet soda cost?

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Re: great news!

$2 - $3 a 12-pack for the bargain stuff and I drink a couple a day at home, but I also go through 2-3 cans work every night, which is provided at no charge to me.

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Soda

Any idea how much soda there actually is in soda?

I get the impression that salt levels are similar to that of sea water.

That can't be right can it?

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Trollface

Lost empire...

Coffee? What about tea!!!

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Re: Lost empire...

Douglas Adams, How to Make a Cup of Tea:

http://www.h2g2.com/approved_entry/A61345

Tea is good for you. The function of gut bacteria is an area that is still yielding new discoveries, but green tea has been show to encourage good bacteria (more so than any 'pro-biotic' yoghurt drinks). It's one of those things that has been known in China for thousands of years. Even we know that a good cup of tea after a full-English breakfast is good for cutting through the grease, making the back of our throats a less bacteria that might give us 'strep-throat'.

There is an Chinese saying that "Vegetable soup makes you calm and happy" and I remember reading about ten years ago that scientists had only just got around to confirming that empirically: they discovered that eating vegetable soup for a fortnight resulted in marked drop in stress hormones in the blood.

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Surely...

...a cup of tea is the choice of the workplace professional.

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Re: Surely...

The choice between a limescalescale-encrusted kettle, and a boiler (which is only ever hot, not boiling) make a decent cup of tea an impossibility at the office. No tea is preferable to bad tea.

Instant coffee, however, is a little like sex or wine, in so much as that even though it is bad, it is usually good enough.

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@Lamont Cranston (was: Re: Surely...)

"Instant coffee, however, is a little like sex or wine, in so much as that even though it is bad, it is usually good enough."

Oh my. You are really young, aren't you? Might want to be quiet when the adults are in the room.

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Re: Surely...

"Instant coffee, however, is a little like sex or wine, in so much as that even though it is bad, it is usually good enough."

Surely you were being sarcastic there? May I suggest using El Reg's <irony> tags, or something similar?

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Re: Surely...

More of a language fail than a sarcasm fail, I think he meant something along the lines of:

Even instant coffee is better than no coffee.

which would be analogous to :

Even bad sex is better than no sex

Which, as a dedicated coffee drinker, I can definitely agree with.

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Thanks, Ace.

Close enough, byt "even instant coffee is preferable to bad tea" was what I was going for.

A quick test for everyone: next time you're near a hot drinks machine, get a cup each of tea and coffee from it - both will be awful, naturally, but only one will taste like it's actively trying to ruin your day.

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Re: Surely...

Tea should be made with water around 85C, not boiling.

I very much enjoy my 2 or 3 500ml cups of tea a day.

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Re: Thanks, Ace.

It'll taste almost, but not quite, entirely unlike tea.

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Re: Thanks, Ace.

There is a very simple principle to the making of tea and it's this - to get the proper flavour of tea, the water has to be boiling (not boiled) when it hits the tea leaves. If it's merely hot then the tea will be insipid. That's why we English have these odd rituals, such as warming the teapot first (so as not to cause the boiling water to cool down too fast as it hits the pot). And that's why the American habit of bringing a teacup, a tea bag and a pot of hot water to the table is merely the perfect way of making a thin, pale, watery cup of tea that nobody in their right mind would want to drink. The Americans are all mystified about why the English make such a big thing out of tea because most Americans have never had a good cup of tea. That's why they don't understand. In fact the truth of the matter is that most English people don't know how to make tea any more either, and most people drink cheap instant coffee instead, which is a pity, and gives Americans the impression that the English are just generally clueless about hot stimulants.

-Douglas Adams

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Re: @Lamont Cranston (was: Surely...)

Heh, I'm actually agreeing with jake...

The only time bad sex is 'good enough' is when you're a teenager. Although those of us who've been in a relationship for some time would probably also point out that a quick session is not necessarily a bad one. Especially after a long day at work.

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Re: Thanks, Ace.

What you have to do is warm the oil condensate off the pot with hot water and then add the leaves and the boiling water. Instant coffee is OK~ish with warm water as it is a processed food that just needs rehydrating.

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Re: @Fibbles

I have a full time job and three children so, at the end of any day, I'll take whatever I can get - be it coffee, wine, or sex - and the quality is not always my top concern!

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@Fibbles (Was: Re: @Lamont Cranston (was: Surely...))

So-called "quickies" are good ... Hint for all the kids in the audience: Pick a simple pocket token[1]. The first time around, keep it secretly ready for when your .sig-other is having a really bad day. Hand it to 'em, explaining that "this is a freebie, but any time you want a quickie, anywhere, pass it to me, and we'll find a way ASAP ... next time it's my turn, and I hand it back to you, and etc.". Works wonders, if you & your partner trust each other[0]. I've suggested this to various folks over the years, all have thanked me :-)

[0] If you don't, why are you still partners? Move on, already!

[1] Ours is an alumin(i)um bit of Ford 427ci piston skirt that my wife grenaded[2] when I was teaching her the fine points of 200MPH+ drag racing ... she was in tears because she broke the motor. The tears turned to embarrassed giggles, which is what I was after.

[2] PM suggested valve-train failure, probably my fault. I picked the piece off the track at about the 50 foot mark. 20 years ago. I have absolutely no idea how the idea popped into my head.

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@Lamont Cranston (was: Re: @Fibbles)

I feel so sorry for you. Sorrier for your wife. And even sorrier for your kids.

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Anonymous Coward

whereas sweetened beverages are effectively a form of tinned or bottled death.

That's not the catchiest advertising tag line, but it did make me want a coke zero.

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FAIL

Digging Further

If we follow the link to AAN piece we get this

"The study involved 263,925 people between the ages of 50 and 71 at enrollment. From 1995 to 1996, consumption of drinks such as soda, tea, fruit punch and coffee was evaluated. About 10 years later, researchers asked the participants whether they had been diagnosed with depression since the year 2000. A total of 11,311 depression diagnoses were made."

Way too many other possible reasons for depression could have happen - taking a wild guess with the age spread presented I think a few loved ones may have gone on rather than too many diet cokes.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Digging Further

Survivorship bias: perhaps most of the depressed coffee drinkers had enough 'get up and go' to top themselves and didn't make the count.

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Anonymous Coward

Depressed? Why should I be depressed?

Here I am, brain the size of a planet, and they ask me to pick up a piece of paper, sod all to do with fizzy drinks. Do you know the probability of a robot drinking fizzy pop? If I wasn't so depressed I'd tell you.

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The cup that cheers, but does not inebriate

Tea. Big mug, splash of milk, two digestive biscuits.

If I can't have tea, then I would much rather have a cup of hot Bovril.

Coffee is a very poor substitute

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Re: The cup that cheers, but does not inebriate

>Big mug

Minimum, pint mug super heated in the microwave to get that extra strong tea flavour out of the leaves.

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Headmaster

Re: The cup that cheers, but does not inebriate

Actually, "the cups that cheer, but do not inebriate". Although attributed to William Cowper, this description was originated by Bishop George Berkeley, he of the silent tree falling in the forest. He was talking about tar water, to which he attributed medicinal properties.**

Tar water is available from the vending machines in all the offices where I've worked, but they usually call it coffee.

** Curiously, this information comes from Bertrand Russell's History of Western Philosophy

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Re: The cup that cheers, but does not inebriate

Bob Dylan's Theme Time Radio Hour had an episode called "Coffee", well worth a traipse across the interwebs to find... Apparently, one Pope liked this new-fangled drink so much that he baptised it.

Speaking of mathematicians (Russell, not Dylan), it was said of Paul Erdős by his colleague Alfréd Rényi "a mathematician is a machine for turning coffee into theorems".

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Unhappy

> Depressed all day, every day

> No Coke or Diet Coke

> Drink unsweetened coffee as if caffeine is the key to being one of the Chosen Ones when the rapture comes

> "Cutting out or down on sweetened diet drinks or replacing them with unsweetened coffee may naturally help lower your depression risk"

My Face When

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You know what would depress me? Living a health-freak's life. Every time I pick up a drink or snack these days there's someone around to tell me all the ways it's going to kill me.

GOOD!

I'd rather drop dead at 70 having eaten and drank every bloody thing I like than make it to 75 without Dr Pepper. I've no intention of becoming a man-mountain, but I'm not about to start snacking on the muesli either.

</grumpy_old_man_who_is_actually_in_his_mid_20s>

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Muesli is fried. It's probably one of the worst things you can eat. Go compare the nutritional information to any other cereal (e.g. honey-nut cornflakes) next time you are in a supermarket.

That said, it tastes like bird-seed and I'm with you on the first part, so I avoid it for that reason.

I'd like a life experienced for 70 years, than death avoided through sacrifice of that experience for 100.

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@Greg J Preece

"I'd rather drop dead at 70 having eaten and drank every bloody thing I like than make it to 75 without Dr Pepper. I've no intention of becoming a man-mountain, but I'm not about to start snacking on the muesli either."

Don't you mean

"I'd rather spend my years from 45 to 70 taking ever increasing handfuls of powerful medications with nasty debilitating side effects and sleeping with a tubes up my nose and into my bladder. Slowly, slowly, ever-so-slowly slipping from a painful life to ignominious death - than consider my own and my dependants/loved ones futures a little tiny bit".

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Muesli

Give it up, muesli is mainly made of uncooked rolled oats.

I've done the comparison you suggest with a random muesli is lower in calories and suger, and higher in fibre:

http://www.ocado.com/webshop/product/Dorset-Cereals-Simply-Delicious-Muesli/31166011

http://www.ocado.com/webshop/product/Kelloggs-Crunchy-Nut-Corn-Flakes/10013011

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Re: @Greg J Preece

I'd rather spend my years from 45 to 70 taking ever increasing handfuls of powerful medications with nasty debilitating side effects and sleeping with a tubes up my nose and into my bladder. Slowly, slowly, ever-so-slowly slipping from a painful life to ignominious death - than consider my own and my dependants/loved ones futures a little tiny bit.

No, you condescending git, I don't. I mean that it's impossible to pick up anything these days without hearing about how it will kill me, so rather than spend the rest of my life worrying about dying from a thousand cuts, I'm going to continue the laser tag, skiing and otherwise pratting about that keeps me in reasonable condition, and eat and drink as I normally do. No smoking, no heroin, just the odd cider, and lots of chinese food.

And the most likely outcome from that? I'll live for pretty much the same length of time, but be far happier at the end of it.

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Re: @Greg J Preece

Yeah, but it is actually healthier to eat something fatty at breakfast, since it 'sets' your body to deal with it throughout the day. Carbs are good at lunch, but in the evening just stick to meat and veg (you don't need carbs to sit back and relax). Easy.

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Re: @Greg J Preece

"I'd rather spend my years from 45 to 70 taking ever increasing handfuls of powerful medications with nasty debilitating side effects and sleeping with a tubes up my nose and into my bladder. Slowly, slowly, ever-so-slowly slipping from a painful life to ignominious death - than consider my own and my dependants/loved ones futures a little tiny bit".

Anecdotal but...

The vast majority of people I know are not health freaks. Of those in the 45 - 70 age range only a tiny minority are on any medication as far as I'm aware. Only one (actually over 70) has tubes for breathing and that's because he worked as a painter in the ship yards before anyone gave a fuck about the health and safety of workers.

Hopefully I'll have the genetic resilience and luck of my great-grandad who had a full English every day, enjoyed his whisky and regularly smoked cigars. He lived in good health well into his 80s and enjoyed every minute of it.

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Re: @Greg J Preece

Yeah, but it is actually healthier to eat something fatty at breakfast, since it 'sets' your body to deal with it throughout the day

Good grief. This is like a Gillian McKeith convention of nutritional nonsense.

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Smokin hot

>I'd like a life experienced for 70 years, than death avoided through sacrifice of that experience for 100.

My dad used to say that.

About tobacco.

Capstan Navy Cut.

Then he got cancer.

That frightened him.

But hey, he had a life full of experience right up until his 70's. 71 -and shitty health for decades.

He smelt like a red tide. I don't know what people dying of sugar poisoning smell like.

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Re: @Greg J Preece

And the most likely outcome from that?

Knee and hip joint problems. High blood pressure. Heart disease.

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Anonymous Coward

note *canned* sodas

It's the aluminium cans that are killing us. Bring back glass bottles and they'll be OK.

(AC because of the international aluminium conspiracy)

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