...7 UP AND BIPOLAR DISORDER?
The original formula for 7 Up was created in 1929 by Charles Leiper Grigg. It was initially marketed as a patent medicine, like many soft drinks during the Great Depression.
The ‘lemon-lime soda’ contained lithium citrate, and although Grigg never confirmed the origin of the name ‘7 Up’, one theory is that the number 7 refers to the atomic mass of lithium.
Lithium citrate was known to be a moodstabilising drug (lithium tablets are shown on the left), and the drink was sold as a pick-me-up and hangover cure. An early version of Coca-Cola also contained lithium citrate.
The drug was removed from 7 Up in 1948, but lithium compounds are still used today to treat bipolar disorder (image of bipolar brain can be seen on the right). They strengthen connections in the brain regions that regulate mood and behaviour.