Health Buzz: Monster Energy Drinks Cited For 5 Deaths

Facebook post-breakup: Bad for your heart? Plus, best foods to eat during pregnancy

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Maryland Parents Suing Monster, Claim Their Teen Daughter Died of Caffeine Toxicity

Monster Energy Drink has been cited for the deaths of five people and one nonfatal heart attack, according to incident reports submitted to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. A 24-ounce can of Monster contains 240 milligrams of caffeine, reports the Associated Press, and the reports sent to the FDA claim these six people drank the energy drink before having adverse reactions. These reports are being used by Maryland parents who sued Monster last week, claiming the drink is to blame for the death of their 14-year-old daughter in December 2011, specifically by "cardiac arrhythmia due to caffeine toxicity," reports Bloomberg. The girl had consumed two of the energy drinks within 24 hours, and had an inherited disorder that can weaken blood vessels, says the Associated Press. Her parents claim Monster didn't warn about the products' risks. "As with any reports of a death or injury the agency receives, we take them very seriously and investigate diligently," Shelly Burgess, a FDA spokeswoman, said in a statement to AP.

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  • Facebook Post-Breakup: Bad For Your Heart?

    He broke your heart. She dumped you and ran. You're miserable—and you never want to see your ex again.

    Except there he is, looking good in that new profile picture splashed all over your news feed. And hey, who's that guy leaving emoticons on her wall? There's no doubt Facebook has complicated modern-day breakups: Out of sight, out of mind? Not so much, these days. And no one's clicking "like" on that.

    A study published in September in Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking found that stalking an ex on Facebook—or frequently checking his or her profile and friends list—is linked with "greater current distress over the breakup, more negative feelings, more sexual desire, more longing for the ex-partner, and lower personal growth." Indeed, experts say Facebook can prolong post-breakup pain, while delaying emotional recovery.

    "When a breakup is still raw and painful, being exposed to your ex-partner through Facebook is like pouring salt on a wound," says study author Tara Marshall, a psychologist at Brunel University in England. "Seeing photos, reading his or her updates, and finding out that he's involved in a new relationship may intensify distress. Distance—online and offline—allows emotions to cool enough to develop a meaningful narrative about what went wrong in the relationship, which facilitates recovery and growth." [Read more: Facebook Post-Breakup: Bad For Your Heart?]

    • 8 Steps to Mend a Broken Heart
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    • Best Foods to Eat During Pregnancy

      Proper nutrition during pregnancy can make a big difference: It can build a stronger baby brain and skeleton, prevent birth defects, and set the baby up for a healthier weight later in life. The right diet can also help the mom-to-be prevent pregnancy problems like constipation or hemorrhoids, and help maintain her own store of nutrients, preventing issues like anemia or bone loss, writes U.S. News blogger Melinda Johnson.

      Here are six things the right foods can do for baby and mom:

      1. Build that baby brain: Omega-3 fatty acids are a type of fat needed to build a proper, well-functioning brain. To add these to your diet, choose fatty fish such as canned light tuna or salmon twice a week, and munch on walnuts as a mid-day snack.

      2. Boost the baby's IQ: While omega-3 fatty acids are also linked to the baby's development of intelligence, another nutrient needed for brain power is choline. Babies who don't get enough choline during pregnancy may be set up for permanent problems with brain structure, possibly leading to a lower IQ and emotional problems later on. Eggs are a great source of choline, as well as chicken and turkey. Vegetarian moms can get choline from collard greens and cauliflower. [Read more: Best Foods to Eat During Pregnancy]