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What happens if the polar bears actually drank cola
October 12, 2012 1:35 PM   Subscribe

The Real Bears What bears drinking soda would look like.
posted by Yellow (47 comments total) 10 users marked this as a favorite

 
This is good.
posted by kinnakeet at 1:41 PM on October 12, 2012


Like we need to have this discussion again
posted by Pruitt-Igoe at 1:43 PM on October 12, 2012 [3 favorites]


Most bears around here like a little extra heft. I usually see them drinking draft beer though, not soda.
posted by Blue Meanie at 1:44 PM on October 12, 2012 [9 favorites]


Bah, I was promised real bears and all I got was cartoon bears. Not even realistic cartoon bears but ones anthropomorphized enough to hold a soda bottle in one paw and drink it like a human would. That's not what a bear drinking soda would look like!
posted by baf at 1:54 PM on October 12, 2012 [21 favorites]


It was all cute and shit until they cut the papa bear's leg off with a fucking chainsaw.
posted by yeoz at 1:54 PM on October 12, 2012 [4 favorites]


Polar bears don't eat a lean diet of fish, as suggested in this cartoon. They eat seals. Indeed, adult polar bears eat almost nothing but blubber, leaving the rest of the carcass for scavengers.

So, I mean, yay for consumer awareness and everything, but, like, blubber, y'all.
posted by Sys Rq at 1:55 PM on October 12, 2012 [5 favorites]


I'm feeling kinda traumatized here. Another stupid thing to stick on the list to (not) share with the therapist, I guess. Not that I drink soda (but, I guess I still snack on sugary snacks a lot).
posted by yeoz at 1:57 PM on October 12, 2012


The bears in my community drink imperial stouts, ironically ride unicycles and use Victorian style umbrellas. When you point out their lack of understanding of their history, they give you the finger - again, ironically since they are actually giving you the paw - and start blasting Grizzly Bear tracks on their retro fitted boomboxes. I feel old.
posted by Foci for Analysis at 1:57 PM on October 12, 2012 [7 favorites]


that video hates my freedoms and will destroy america
posted by badstone at 2:01 PM on October 12, 2012 [1 favorite]


Real bears love soda, at least where they have become used to humans, and their garbage, the quickly learn to recognize that those brightly colored cylinders are filled with tasty sugar. I once had a family of black bears tear off my door, go into my house, and take only a case of Redbull.

The house full of bear smell was well worth the image of all the fun the bears had that night.
posted by St. Sorryass at 2:07 PM on October 12, 2012 [16 favorites]


Somebody's brake lines are going to be malfunctioning soon.
posted by odinsdream at 2:14 PM on October 12, 2012


The bears in my community drink PBR, dress a bit like sexy lumberjacks, and use more biker gear than is strictly necessary given their actual mode of transportation.
posted by nebulawindphone at 2:15 PM on October 12, 2012 [6 favorites]


I once had a family of black bears tear off my door, go into my house, and take only a case of Redbull.

Are you sure this wasn't a Redbull viral marketing campaign?
posted by ultraviolet catastrophe at 2:28 PM on October 12, 2012 [9 favorites]


Soda is bad for you, like any empty, sugary calories are bad for you.

But there is this effort to try to push a theory according to which soda is uniquely bad for you. This is propped up by some really weak hypotheses about the absorption of calories in liquid form and so on.

When I see stuff like this, I can't help thinking of a friend of mine who accidentally found himself in the middle of this debate, because he was good at stats--really, really good at stats--and needed a job. So he took some money from soft-drink-related sources to evaluate studies about soda. Now, this guy is liberal, pragmatic, level-headed, extremely smart and extremely honest, intellectually and otherwise. He wasn't thrilled with taking money from these folks, but since he had no intention of lying for them, he took it and did the analyses. To his surprise, it turned out that, no matter how he ran the numbers--so long as he ran them responsibly--soda was just like any other sugary food. It is, e.g., like candy bars. The nutrients are crap, but calories are calories, and it doesn't matter whether you take them in as solid or liquid. Soda is not uniquely bad for you. The studies that said otherwise almost always turned out to be shockingly, appallingly, often almost unbelievably bad.

He began to publish his findings, and he was absolutely vilified.

Naively scientific, his only defense was "But...but...look at these numbers! Look at this analysis!"

The responses he encountered often had roughly the form: you took money from Big Soda and want our children to be fat!!!!111

So far as I can tell, he was always right. But he finally got so fed up with being attacked and black-balled and vilified by anti-soda zealots that he gave up, took another job, and tries not to have anything else to do with it. He stands by his analysis, but his view is, basically, that he only has so much energy, he doesn't have any interested in defending soda, and he simply can't risk his reputation to stand up against powerful people who believe, with an almost religious fervor, that soda is the Tool of Satan.
posted by Fists O'Fury at 2:32 PM on October 12, 2012 [14 favorites]


Like we need to have this discussion again

I naturally assumed you meant the discussion about what bears look like while drinking soda.
posted by six-or-six-thirty at 2:38 PM on October 12, 2012 [4 favorites]


Indeed, adult polar bears eat almost nothing but blubber, leaving the rest of the carcass for scavengers.

Perhaps they need something to wash it down with.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 2:39 PM on October 12, 2012 [2 favorites]


Sys Rq, I know you were joking, but I believe you allude to what I believe is a common misconception about nutrition. It seems to me that as a society, many conflate the ideas of bodily fat and dietary fat, shaming and stigmatizing the former and demonizing the latter. Truly, though, dietary fat is important for our nervous and endocrine systems and is the most energetic and satiating thing we put in our bodies (fats have 9 kcal/g, carbs and proteins only have 4). Our poor sugar bears better be eating fat, since their caloric needs for any given day must be massive, given that it's cold as hell and they've got to wander around almost constantly to find food.

Just to elaborate on the point of Fists, the general nutritional idea is that soda, as a liquid carbohydrate, has like no satiety value. Neither really does a candy bar, though maybe if there were some nuts in it they'd hang around in your tract for a while. A soda doesn't behave in your body the way an actual solid meal that has to hang out in your GI tract would, also. You're not getting any nutrition out of soda, just a quick, short term sugar rush while your pancreas figures out how to sequester all that sugar in your cells or make more adipose. Then you're off your sugar rush, then you don't have any real energy to be active, then you sit on your ass and watch Netflix and smoke a bowl.
posted by sibboleth at 2:45 PM on October 12, 2012 [2 favorites]


Yeah the problem here isn't that people think soda is somehow worse than candy. It's that they don't think it's equivalent: soda is just what you have with your meal, so you don't choke on your food--it's not actually food itself.

It is functionally equivalent to having dessert, but no one thinks about it that way, and we consume it like we would water.
posted by danny the boy at 2:55 PM on October 12, 2012 [7 favorites]


If I find myself looking for a GP, I think that Dr. Fox is off the list.
posted by Wolfdog at 3:02 PM on October 12, 2012 [2 favorites]


yeah, it's not the assumption that soda is, ounce for ounce, worse than anything else, it's the perception that you can just drink it like water all day every day. not too many people eat 5 Snickers bars every afternoon (150g sugar), but there are plenty of people who drink 1-2 liters of soda (100-200g sugar) every day without batting an eye.
posted by badstone at 3:17 PM on October 12, 2012 [5 favorites]




This should be a Diet Coke ad
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 4:23 PM on October 12, 2012 [3 favorites]


But there is this effort to try to push a theory according to which soda is uniquely bad for you. This is propped up by some really weak hypotheses about the absorption of calories in liquid form and so on.

I have a different theory I'd like to push, namely that the soda industry has undue influence on health legislation, corn subsidies and other public policy it has no business in manipulating. It's not the odd soda that's unhealthy, so much as an industry that pushes soda into markets it shouldn't be allowed to go into without oversight, like elementary schools, and using advertising to push excessive consumption habits in children and adults (but particularly children) that directly cause deleterious health effects, like increased rates of type II diabetes and all the devastating secondary problems that disease causes.

The public largely bears the expense of these increased disease rates, not the industries that make a product that is a causal factor in this now well-studied effect. In that respect, soda companies are just one among many examples of how we have allowed monied interests to socialize risk and privatize profits — which, as a biologist, makes these companies the societal equivalent of biological parasites, it seems to me.

I realize that's not a popular view, but I feel strongly that it is a mistake to allow private companies to continue to hold a monopoly on this discussion and how it plays out.

Part of how these companies maintain this stranglehold on the narrative is by sponsoring scientific research that gives results they want. We need more independent research, stronger public health policies, and broader oversight of companies that make products that, when consumed in excess, cause public health crises that they profit from. Sugared sodas are demonstrably one of those products.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 4:24 PM on October 12, 2012 [4 favorites]


Sys Rq, I know you were joking, but I believe you allude to

Nope. No joke. No allusion. Just a (basically irrelevant) correction to a (basically irrelevant) mistake made by the good folks at the Center for Science in the Public Interest.

Polar bears don't eat fish; they eat seals. Adults mostly just eat the blubber. Really.

Also, they rarely wear baseball caps.
posted by Sys Rq at 4:43 PM on October 12, 2012 [2 favorites]


we consume it like we would water.

I used to drink a lot of soda, mostly Coke. One day, maybe a decade ago, maybe a bit more, I was drinking a soda, and I thought "what does this taste like? how would I describe this taste to someone who has never had a soda?" And I thought... "well, it's sweet... and sort of like caramel... but not really... and..." And I had no answer. And then I realized "I don't like the way this tastes. I really hate it! This stuff is awful!"

And I tried one or two different sodas in the next week, trying to find one that wasn't horrible when I really paid attention to it, and I just gave up.

No soda for me, thank you, which is probably just as well.
posted by GenjiandProust at 5:55 PM on October 12, 2012 [2 favorites]


Coke doesn't taste good to me unless I fill a glass with ice, pour it in, and let it sit for a while. I don't know why. I even tried a version with cane sugar imported from Mexico in case the syrup was the culprit and I still couldn't stand it without the preparation.

I don't drink coke, and I've been given the ol' "good for you" because of it, but the truth is I'm just picky.

I'l chug anything with "Boylan" on the label, though.
posted by KChasm at 6:12 PM on October 12, 2012 [1 favorite]


The public largely bears the expense of these increased disease rates

Where is the evidence that the public is paying more for the increased disease burden due to obesity? I suggest that much of the cost of treating type 2 diabetes and other obesity-related diseases would be offset by these patients' premature deaths -- which ultimately save billions of dollars in Medicare/aged care/dementia care expenses.
posted by dontjumplarry at 6:28 PM on October 12, 2012


But but but electrolytes
posted by BitterOldPunk at 6:34 PM on October 12, 2012


Did anyone else want this to go a lot more intensely in the chainsaw direction?

Necrotic stinking flesh rotting off of bears with no bowel control, for example?

No?

oh.
posted by poe at 6:55 PM on October 12, 2012


>But but but electrolytes

they are what plants crave
posted by subversiveasset at 6:55 PM on October 12, 2012


Medicaid and Medicare Coverage for Diabetes

Similarly, millions of people with diabetes rely on Medicare for their diabetes supplies and services which are covered under the program. One out of every three Medicare dollars is spent on diabetes.

Diabetes treatment involves more multidrug regimens and high financial burden

The researchers assessed patients' drug use, expenditures, and their family financial burden for diabetes care. Between the two time periods studied, the total number of nonelderly adults treated for diabetes nearly doubled, representing 5.7 percent of the total United States population in 2006–2007. The prevalence of treated coexisting conditions also grew significantly, including a tripling of lipid disorders. There was also a change in the use of multidrug regimens. The proportion of those using two or more oral drugs increased from 15.7 percent to 30.1 percent. In terms of family financial burden, approximately one-fifth of patients spent 10 percent or more of their income on health care. One in nine spent 20 percent or more. Higher financial burdens were experienced more by patients who were older, female, had poor health, or were uninsured. The authors note that this financial strain may result in inadequate treatment of some patients with diabetes.

Diabetes: Hospital Bills Cost U.S. $83 Billion A Year

Type 2 is overwhelmingly caused by poor diet and lack of exercise (though it can also be genetic). Ninety-five percent of diabetes cases in America are Type 2, which typically affects the elderly, the obese, and a growing number of children. Both of these demographics rely heavily on Medicare and Medicaid for treatment. In fact, according to the report, Medicare paid 60 percent of the hospital stays for diabetics; Medicaid paid 10 percent.

Public costs probably have to be increasing because the incidence rate keeps going up and the cost of care is going up, driving people towards assistance. When you have people who cannot afford care who visit very expensive emergency rooms several times before dying, instead of getting cheaper management-style care, it seems like there's an argument to be made that public costs are going up for a condition that can be controlled through dietary changes, including lowering (not eliminating, but lowering) intake of a commodity known to cause this disease.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 6:56 PM on October 12, 2012 [1 favorite]


I'm fine, I stick to diet soda if anything. *ollies out*
posted by ShawnStruck at 7:03 PM on October 12, 2012 [1 favorite]


My dentist tells me it is the bubbles that cause tooth decay, whether in soda or carbonated water.
posted by chapps at 7:38 PM on October 12, 2012


Pepsi Blue Coke Blues.

Now Be Happy Dammit!
posted by BlueHorse at 7:49 PM on October 12, 2012


I could not be less interested in soda or cartoon polar bears, but I demand that *ollies out* become the new *drops the mic*.
posted by MrBadExample at 7:58 PM on October 12, 2012 [3 favorites]


My dentist tells me it is the bubbles that cause tooth decay, whether in soda or carbonated water.

Well, it isn't just the bubbles. It isn't even primarily the bubbles. Sugar promotes bacterial growth which leads to tooth decay.

But it's possible that the bubbles make things slightly worse. CO2 dissolved in water produces carbonic acid, which means that for instance unflavored seltzer water actually has a lower pH than plain water (and cola, which contains other acidic ingredients as well, has an even lower pH than seltzer water). An acidic environment isn't great for your teeth. So it could be that flat cola would be very very slightly less hard on your teeth than fizzy cola.

But seriously, sugar (and the critters in your mouth who live on it) is the main culprit.
posted by nebulawindphone at 9:03 PM on October 12, 2012


People, people, why are we not talking about the real epidemic that must be eradicated here?

That's right, Jason Mraz.
posted by naoko at 9:07 PM on October 12, 2012 [3 favorites]


The nutrients are crap, but calories are calories, and it doesn't matter whether you take them in as solid or liquid. Soda is not uniquely bad for you.

This was the general conclusion of a debate discussion I attended at a recent international conference for obesity researchers. There is no question that extra calories are bad for you, but no studies to date have shown with any certainty that sugary drinks themselves are the major reason people are becoming more obese. They're simply an easy target. We like to overlook things like, oh, decades of reducing physical education programs and recess time for school kids. Because that NEVER affects body weight.
posted by caution live frogs at 9:16 PM on October 12, 2012 [1 favorite]


If I find myself looking for a GP, I think that Dr. Fox is off the list.
posted by Wolfdog at 3:02 PM on 10/12


eponysterical
posted by univac at 12:30 AM on October 13, 2012


Yeah, I don't like soda much, and my stats buddy (aforementioned) doesn't drink the stuff either.

But on the subject of drinking desert as a beverage...holy God, I went to McDonald's recently stupid hungover and needing fat and sugar. In my stupor, I decided that what I needed was the kind of meal I used to eat there, which included a big-ass milk shake.

ZOMG PEOPLE DRINK SEMI-MELTED ICE CREAM AS IF IT WERE A BEVERAGE!!!

Ugh. Man. That is pretty crazy. It's cloying, sticky nasty...like a cup of cold marshmallow cream or something.
posted by Fists O'Fury at 7:10 AM on October 13, 2012


( Looks down at his half-drank cup of cold marshmallow cream, weeps silently. )
posted by RobotHero at 8:04 AM on October 13, 2012



Bears supposed to be fat. They won't survive the winter without a thick layer of it.

Also, you can have my large coke when you pry it from my cold dead hand. I need that caffeine to survive.
posted by Pogo_Fuzzybutt at 9:07 AM on October 13, 2012


Drink coffee instead. Trade that bum necrotic foot for a megawatt brown-toothed grin.
posted by TheRedArmy at 10:19 AM on October 13, 2012 [1 favorite]




No one is arguing that soda is uniquely bad for you, compared to other major sources of sugar in our diet.

what they are pointing out is that soda IS a major source of sugar in our diet, and sugar is not good for you in the amounts that we are consuming. And we are consuming way too much soda.

also, good point on the polar bear diet. This video should have more dead seals.
posted by jb at 3:15 PM on October 13, 2012


I have a question about the teeth thing. Sure, sugar causes tooth decay, but what if you brush your teeth regularly? What's the risk of tooth decay then?

Also, I'm going to echo what other people have said here and say that I don't know how soda and sugary drinks compares to sugary foods, but certainly people might get in the habit of drinking soda because they're thirsty and get in the habit of drinking it on a daily basis.

Another thing, we could have a whole conversation about Mayor Bloomberg (if anyone wants to). Someone linked to an article about him above.
posted by solomonsucceeds at 8:58 PM on October 13, 2012


Fists O'Fury: and that friend was… Albert Einstein.
posted by Apocryphon at 10:51 PM on October 13, 2012


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