Belfast Telegraph

Newtownabbey mum claims she is going blind after drinking up to six large cans of Red Bull a day

By Claire Williamson

A mother from Newtownabbey has claimed she is going blind after drinking up to six big tins of Red Bull a day.

It is understood Lena Lupari ballooned to 26 stone after spending almost £6,000 every year on the high-calorie energy drink.

The 26-year-old told how she was unaware of the damage she was doing until she collapsed in June.

Doctors discovered the mother-of-three had developed a condition known as Idiopathic intracranial hypertension (IIH) which they said was a result of her being overweight.

She claimed she would consume up to six cans of the energy drink while looking after her children.

"I used to drink up to six big cans of Red Bull in a day and I'd only have a meal at night but it would usually be something fast-food like a takeaway or a packet of pasta.

"I've got three young children, one with special needs, and didn't have time to make anything. 

"I'd been suffering from migraines and headaches for about five years but I just ignored them and took painkillers.

"Then my vision went and I couldn't even lift my head off the bed and I ended up in hospital for six days", she told the Daily Mail.

Since the Co Antrim woman was hospitalised on June 18 she has entirely cut Red Bull from her diet and lost two stone.

Doctors warned Ms Lupari to lose seven stone in order to keep the symptoms at bay and she wants the NHS to help her lose the extra five stone that will prevent the need for medical treatment..

She said: "I don't want a gastric band or surgery but I think they should offer help for someone with this and to motivate them - something like a boot camp.

"Losing the weight doesn't mean it will go away forever but it means I won't need surgery."

A spokeswoman for Red Bull said the drink should be "consumed in moderation".

She said: "One 250 ml can of Red Bull Energy Drink contains the same amount of sugar as in the same-sized apple juice, orange juice or conventional soft drink (27g).

"Like any foods or beverages, energy drinks should be consumed in moderation and as part of a balanced and varied diet and healthy lifestyle. Our product is predominantly sold in small cans – which contributes to such moderation."

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