8 litres of coke a day

April 20th, 2012 at 8:47 am by David Farrar

Stuff reports:

The sister of a woman whose partner claimed she died because she drank too much Coca-Cola says she does not hold the company responsible.

However, the woman’s partner and mother-in-law say warning labels should be put on the drink.

An inquest for mother-of-eight Natasha Harris was held in Invercargill yesterday. Ms Harris died on February 25, 2010.

Otago-Southland coroner David Crerar did not make any preliminary findings after yesterday’s inquest, however pathologist Dan Mornin said he believed Ms Harris died of cardiac arrhythmia and it was likely she was suffering from hypokalemia (low potassium) along with caffeine toxicity, which could have contributed to her death.

When asked by Mr Crerar whether it was probable her consumption of Coca-Cola had caused the hypokalemia and arrhythmia, Dr Mornin said yes, along with poor nutrition and caffeine.

At the inquest, Ms Harris’ partner, Chris Hodgkinson, said his partner consumed between 4.5 and 8 litres of a day for several years before her death, and he believed this had contributed to her death.

His mother, Vivien Hodgkinson said after the inquest that warning labels should be put on Coke products.

Why just on Coke? If you drank eight litres of anything a day (even water), I’d say you would not feel too good. How can you actually drink 8 litres a day?

Drinking up to eight litres of any liquid a day can kill you, regardless of how much sugar or caffeine it contains, a Wellington dietician says.

Foodsavvy’s Sarah Elliott said that when “extreme” amounts of fluid were consumed regularly, the body’s cells could rupture.

“Ten litres of fluid a day could kill you, no matter what it is.”

Exactly.

Specialists recommend that humans do not drink more than four litres of liquid a day. Natasha Harris’s daily intake of Coca-Cola would have given her up to a “shocking” 3424 calories and 864 grams (or 3 1/2 cups) of sugar, Mrs Elliott said.

It is very sad for anyone to die at a young age of 30. But blaming it on coke is silly.

I suspect Harris was morbidly obese. If you are needing to drink so much fluid, you probably have diabetes. And having had eight children doesn’t help either.

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49 Responses to “8 litres of coke a day”

  1. dime (9,657 comments) says:

    hey hey hey. lets not jump to conclusions.

    im sure outside of the coke drinking she lead a healthy lifestyle.

    probably at the gym 5 times a week, never smoked, never consumed alcohol, fresh fruit n veges every day! only lean cuts of meat and lots of fish…

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  2. mikenmild (11,246 comments) says:

    Sorry dime, I see she was also smoking 25-30 a day…

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  3. Put it away (2,888 comments) says:

    How about:

    WARNING – IF YOU ARE DRINKING EIGHT LITRES OF THIS, YOU ARE MENTAL

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  4. eszett (2,357 comments) says:

    At the inquest, Ms Harris’ partner, Chris Hodgkinson, said his partner consumed between 4.5 and 8 litres of Coke a day for several years before her death, and he believed this had contributed to her death.

    SURPRISE!!!!!!!!

    No shit, Sherlock! And this only occurred to you after she died?

    Sorry, even as a bleeding heart leftie, this story pissed me off. Darwin Awards, here we come. Pity it was too late and here genes were passed on.

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  5. MT_Tinman (3,043 comments) says:

    When I first saw this story I figured it was a case of “Them Coke fellas have heaps of money, us bone-idle lazy beneficiaries have none. That’s not fair. Gimme some!”.

    Nothing seen since has changed that perception.

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  6. nasska (10,871 comments) says:

    This is an eye opener……before I climbed on the wagon I used to drink about 6 – 8 litres of Tui Pale Ale per day. I was told regularly that the alcohol would kill me but it must have been the volume of liquid that was making me crook.

    We live & learn.

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  7. smttc (711 comments) says:

    Nasska, you were very wise to give up the 8 litre a day alcohol habit. My sister died last year. The coroner and pathologist’s finding was alcohol toxicity. There is a very fine line between falling asleep and slipping into an irreversible coma when you are really pissed. But as DPF said, 8 litres of anything a day is going to be bad for you.

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  8. KiwiGreg (3,211 comments) says:

    8 kids by 30…..well at least the future of the welfare system is secure

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  9. smttc (711 comments) says:

    KiwiGreg, yeah and I’ll bet anything you like that there was more than one sperm donor and she never worked one day of her adult life. Actually if you are busy popping out 8 kids and smoking 30 a day and drinking 8 litres of coke while you are doing it then it doesn’t leave a lot of time for anything so mundane as work.

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  10. joana (1,983 comments) says:

    Bringing up 8 kids is work…
    Addiction is addiction. I never drink coke but see plenty of people stocking up on it each time I go to the supermarket.

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  11. Odakyu-sen (509 comments) says:

    Eight liters of Coke a day, eight children, smoker. Did this woman ever possess free choice?

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  12. Luke H (73 comments) says:

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10800154

    “All her teeth had been removed because they were rotting, prompting a dentist to remark about drinking too much Coke.”

    Mind-boggling that the husband thought he could argue that they didn’t know it was causing her harm.

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  13. transmogrifier (522 comments) says:

    Honestly couldn’t believe this story and the simply naive (and that’s putting it very, very charitably) attitude of her family. From the article:

    “….her family is convinced her Coca-Cola consumption played a part in her death – and they say the popular drink should carry warning signs.”

    “I never thought about it. It’s just a soft-drink, just like drinking water.”

    “Since she had been unwell, she did not eat breakfast, ate only snacks at lunch and often went without dinner.”

    “All her teeth had been removed because they were rotting, prompting a dentist to remark about drinking too much Coke.”

    “Mr Crerar also suggested that even if Coke bottles had warning labels on them, Ms Harris may not have heeded the advice, as she was a smoker and all cigarette packets carried health warnings.”

    “The family were hoping to obtain compensation from Coca-Cola for the children, who were now in care.”

    Seriously, if they get anything out of this, you might as well force every single food and beverage manufacturer to put warnings on their products, along the lines of “WARNING: Eating or drinking this product to excess at the exclusion of everything else is not recommended, you utter, utter dumbass. For those of you with common sense, please ignore this message.”

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  14. CJPhoto (218 comments) says:

    Would be interesting to see a recent photo of her because I agree, she probably was obese consuming that much sugar.

    Would also be interesting to see if she was on welfare. It annoys me when people dont make smart choices (8l of coke – 30 cigs, and 8 children) but that taxpayers pay for the lifestyle is even more annoying.

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  15. Linvoice (15 comments) says:

    Do not like Coke. As for the rest of the story…speechless!

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  16. dime (9,657 comments) says:

    “Bringing up 8 kids is work…”

    Not as much as youd think i suspect.

    Dime has been around his fair share of trashy solo mums (who are you to judge me). There are some lazy bitches out there.

    Kids raise themselves!

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  17. ArranH (14 comments) says:

    Joana,

    Bringing up 8 kids would definitely be difficult, but it isn’t ‘work’ in that is shouldn’t be seen as a way of being a government employee. Neither does someone accidentally enough times to have eight kids (or if they do perhaps they shouldn’t be raising kids).

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  18. Other_Andy (2,505 comments) says:

    As suggested yesterday, this would be another one for the green’s, taking the precautionary principle or precautionary approach, ‘banned list’.

    The precautionary principle or precautionary approach
    This principle allows policy makers to make discretionary decisions in situations where there is the possibility of harm from taking a particular course or making a certain decision when extensive scientific knowledge on the matter is lacking. The principle implies that there is a social responsibility to protect the public from exposure to harm, when scientific investigation has found a plausible risk.

    Some call it the “Facts, what facts? We don’t need no stinking facts!” approach or in some cases the “tail wags dog” approach.

    Put it at number 89 of your list toad.

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  19. nasska (10,871 comments) says:

    It’s amazing that she could actually afford these ‘addictions’. A back of the envelope calculation gives the cost of 8 litres of Coke/day at about $95/week even at supermarket prices. Thirty of the cheapest cigarettes per day adds up to about $140/week.

    How many families with eight kids wouldn’t be really stretched for money if Mum is wasting $235 each week on rubbish?

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  20. BlairM (2,304 comments) says:

    I don’t think she was necessarily obese, as the story says that she didn’t eat much else. But kids, if you ever feel like your life is going nowhere and you haven’t achieved all you want to in the time given you – relax – you could always have been Natasha Harris!

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  21. KiwiGreg (3,211 comments) says:

    Having said that I drink a litre of (diet) coke a day (3 cans). The caffeine is an important part of my balanced diet.

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  22. David Garrett (6,723 comments) says:

    Words fail me. I am surprised the woman from coca cola bothered to come from Australia to attend this inquest. Perhaps she felt like seeing some green grass.

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  23. Fost (102 comments) says:

    The warning label should read: “Being stupid can kill you.”

    FFS I think her partner should be held accountable for his partner drinking herself to death – I find is unfathomable to read that he’d let this behaviour go on for YEARS!

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  24. dime (9,657 comments) says:

    fost – you can imagine the performance every time the poor bastard said “you shouldnt drink so much coke”.

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  25. Fletch (6,135 comments) says:

    Coke is one of my few vices. I don’t drink any alcohol at all, smoke or do drugs. Still, I know these sodas are bad for you.
    I would be lucky to drink 1 litre in a day though. Then I got down to drinking 2 of those 330ml glass bottles – one, say, for lunch, and one at dinner. Am trying to change one of them to the Schweppes Soda With a Twist Of Lemon, as it has half the sugar of Coke.

    My doctor’s assistant reckons they transport the Coke syrup around in the US in big trucks as it is corrosive or something, and he reckons he knew a guy who drank lots of it who doesn’t have the use of his liver now.

    Is hard to say.

    For those trying to quit soda, tipnut has the suggestion to drink ice-cold water with a splash of lemon and crushed ice. He suggests that the crushed ice is a suitable replacement for the “texture” that fizz gives. I have tried it, and do it sometimes. The crushed ice machines are available from Briscoes etc, quite cheaply when on special (around $30 etc)

    http://tipnut.com/how-to-beat-the-soda-pop-addiction/

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  26. Fost (102 comments) says:

    Yes – but I get the same thing when I tell my 4 year old he has to eat his dinner not chocolate. Being an adult sometimes requires you to ignore the yelling and screaming and doing what it right. Whether that is a 4 year old child or your 30 year old partner. Taking responsibility is what being an adult is all about – but no one bothers with responsibility that much any more – it’s all about their rights.

    I still can’t see how he could not say something as every week they put 14 to 30 Coke 2L bottles into the shopping cart – you’d need at least one trolley just for the coke, before you got to the groceries for 8 children – it would be like following a road train around the store. And they did it for years.

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  27. Fletch (6,135 comments) says:

    ps, I think I meant kidney in my above post – not liver..

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  28. Fost (102 comments) says:

    Fletch – I drink about 1L of Vanilla Coke a day – yeap I’m the owner of THAT coke, DPF made famous/infamous – and accept that it’s not as healthy as drinking water – but I like the taste of it. The whole water with a lemon thing, eww – rather just drink the water by itself, which I do if there is no Coke in the fridge.

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  29. RandySavage (200 comments) says:

    I drink 8 cups of water a day every day. They do contain coffee, but water is water right?

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  30. David Garrett (6,723 comments) says:

    I am not sure of DPF’s attitude to product endorsement…but I have discovered soda-stream courtesy of my kids. While the “coke” flavoured soda stream syrup is virtually undrinkable. I have discovered that, as that they say, fizzy water really does taste better than “plain”…Even my 6 year old is pretty keen on it, sans flavouring…

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  31. Other_Andy (2,505 comments) says:

    Now you have done it David, polluting Gaia’s gift with evil CO2.
    You heretic!

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  32. Don the Kiwi (1,646 comments) says:

    I usually drink a couple of litres of water a day.

    ……….Well, 95% water anyway. The balance is made up of either Waikato or Becks additives :-)

    Necessary to replace all those vital trace elements and vitamins that one burns up each day, doncha know.

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  33. dime (9,657 comments) says:

    “I don’t think she was necessarily obese, as the story says that she didn’t eat much else.”

    hmm 7 litres of coke is around 3000 calories.

    its also around 800 grams of sugar per day. (based on 20 cans a day. a can being around 40 grams from memory)

    its just insane

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  34. Rich Prick (1,630 comments) says:

    “I have discovered that, as that they say, fizzy water really does taste better than “plain”…”

    Ah ha! So you’re the one killing the polar bears. I shall report you to the Greens.

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  35. Fletch (6,135 comments) says:

    Just plain soda water tastes kind of salty to me (the sodium I guess), so I have trouble drinking it without any other flavour.

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  36. Hair Removal Specialist (79 comments) says:

    David Garrett – yes, soda stream is great. Large supply of cold, carbonated water. Great plain or mixing in with a dash of lime.

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  37. David Garrett (6,723 comments) says:

    Of course!! CO2 is one of those evil greenouse gases! Memo to Greens: Must promote banning of all soda stream machines in NZ for heavily penalties for any children making themsleves a glass of “Orange and Mango”…pretty vile in my view, but they seem to like it…

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  38. Ryan Sproull (7,059 comments) says:

    My doctor’s assistant reckons they transport the Coke syrup around in the US in big trucks as it is corrosive or something, and he reckons he knew a guy who drank lots of it who doesn’t have the use of his liver now.

    If stomach acid was transported in trucks, they’d be marked as containing dangerously corrosive material.

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  39. Sadu (129 comments) says:

    The outrage at Coca cola is ridiculous. It’s no more or less dangerous than any other product at the supermarket when we are talking about this volume. I’m sure you could kill yourself eating spinach if you tried hard enough.

    Anyway, coke already has a warning label on it – see the section on the back labelled “nutritional information”.

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  40. holysheet (297 comments) says:

    Coke is made from phosphoric acid, sugar and flavourings. When you consume the phosphate (phosphoric acid) it upsets the bloods calcium balance, the body compensates for this by taking the calcium from the bones. This is why women should never drink coke.
    In later years they suffer severe osteoarthritis.
    This silly bitch was just waiting to die.

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  41. Rufus (646 comments) says:

    holysheet – and don’t forget the salt. That’s why is contains so much sugar – to mask the salt.

    8 L a day is nuts. 1 L a day is nuts.

    The partner’s response is also unbelievable – “I never thought about it. It’s just a soft-drink, just like drinking water.”

    Yes, Coke is just like water.

    Some people…

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  42. gump (1,542 comments) says:

    It sounds like a classic case of co-dependency.

    I feel a bit sorry for the kids.

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  43. Belinda (126 comments) says:

    The partner sounds a wasted space, aren’t the kids now in care?
    Tragic this woman had 8 kids before she was removed from the gene pool.

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  44. Johnboy (15,537 comments) says:

    Belinda.

    What a lovely name! :)

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  45. Liberal Minded Kiwi (1,568 comments) says:

    Just wait for the Greens to want to ban Coke… oh wait.

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  46. Johnboy (15,537 comments) says:

    They could just wrap it in a khaki label. :)

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  47. Brian Smaller (4,026 comments) says:

    Can you imagine what the offspring of these two hillbillies are like?

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  48. PaulL (5,983 comments) says:

    Should have a warning stamped on their foreheads – warning, may contain stupidity.

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  49. sassycassy (44 comments) says:

    Don’t forget the marketing slogan “Coke adds life” ;-)

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