A Small Thing that Brings Me Joy

A Small Thing that Brings Me Joy

I drink a lot of Coke.

People have strong opinions about that. For example, “But do you know how bad it is for your health?” Or, “You should cut out Coke and follow this generic diet, and your health will improve.” Or, “Maybe you would feel better if you drank less Coke.”

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Enjoying a can of Coca-Cola. (Photo by Retha De Wet)

Whatever you’re thinking, I’ve probably heard it already.

It’s important to understand that I am by no means advocating Coca-Cola as an effective treatment for myasthenia gravis (MG). But Coke does help me manage my health.

Objectively speaking, I understand where my critics are coming from. Beyond its other unhealthy properties, Coca-Cola is full of excessive amounts of sugar and caffeine. Caffeine isn’t safe for everyone with MG, which is why it is important to know your own body. Personally, the temporary energy boost of caffeine outweighs the cons — for example, how Coke affects my stomach in conjunction with Mestinon (pyridostigmine). Everyone who takes Mestinon knows about its digestive side effects.

Did I mention that I really like the taste of Coke?

I adore Coke, and I’m tired of having to explain that to people. Surely, as an adult, I should be left to my own devices, as long as I don’t neglect any of my adult duties. Especially if I don’t neglect my duties because of the energy boost that Coke gives me!

Coke is my small way of rebelling against the medical community. It energizes me physically without requiring me to take more medications. Emotionally, the joy each sip brings is enough to put a smile on my face on a difficult day. I also live in Africa. It gets hot here, and heat and MG are not friends. It’s difficult to argue that there is anything more refreshing than a cold Coca-Cola on a hot day.

I think that every person with MG needs to find their version of Coke. We need something that makes us feel better on bad days, a thing that empowers us and brings us joy without too much physical exertion. Coke is one of the few things that I liked before falling ill that I can still enjoy independently. It also can spark a conversation about a common interest with strangers. Not only chronically ill people enjoy Coke!

Coca-Cola has become my guilty pleasure, and I am grateful for it. Now, find your version of Coke and enjoy the beauty of life.

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Myasthenia Gravis News is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.

I’m a 24 year old from sunny South Africa. I’ve been dying with a twist since 2013 when I was first diagnosed with myasthenia gravis. I can speak four languages and I’m a lover of life and all things wild.
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I’m a 24 year old from sunny South Africa. I’ve been dying with a twist since 2013 when I was first diagnosed with myasthenia gravis. I can speak four languages and I’m a lover of life and all things wild.

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