Sat, May 24, 2008 - Page 2 News List

Doctor warns of perils of phosphates


Patients with kidney problems should refrain from consuming too much black tea, oolong tea and colas because of their high phosphate content, a renal specialist said yesterday.

Chiang Shou-shan (江守山), an attending physician at Shin Kong Wu Ho-Su Memorial Hospital, cited the example of a dialysis patient who developed cardiac arrhythmia after drinking Coca-Cola and bubble tea.

Cardiac arrhythmia refers to abnormal electrical activity in the heart. The heartbeat may be too fast or too slow or irregular.

Chiang said that the intake of phosphate from a normal diet is between 900mg and 1,000mg a day.

“But 900 milligrams is the limit for kidney patients,” he said.

Chiang said that research has shown that bubble tea and colas contain high levels of phosphate and are unsuitable for kidney disease patients.

Sports beverages contain no phosphate. Also green tea and cold brew teas, which undergo shorter fermentation periods, are suitable for kidney patients, Chiang said.

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