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Energy Drinks, MTHFR and the Young Athlete

My son just failed his high school sports physical! The reason, he was given an EKG after telling the physician he is having heart palpitations during his basketball games. After the physician had some reservations about the results of the EKG he then ordered an echo cardio gram to gather more information. This self-proclaimed "helicopter mom" almost had a heart attack after all of this! I recently signed my son and I up to get some genetic testing through Not at all interested in our heritage (Scottish/Irish/German thank you!) I loaded the data file into the website to find out about our genes. I found that he and I had the MTHFR gene, I with only one SNP and he with two SNPs. SNPs are differences in the genes that may or may not have on effect on you. What is MTHFR? I know it sounds like a little dirty word you would say after stubbing your toe! But it is a mutation that can effect that way you process the synthetic man made b vitamin folic acid. If you have this mutation it can make it difficult for your liver to detoxify and homocysteine can build up in your blood. Many young athletes are drinking energy drinks these days that are loaded with the synthetic B vitamin folic acid. This may cause heart palpitations for the athlete if they have an unknown MTHFR gene mutation. Better advice is to eat a whole foods diet abundant in natural folate from leafy green veggies and staying away from energy drinks.

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