Talk to many dieters, and they will tell you diet sodas are part of their everyday consumption in their effort to manage and lose weight. And why not? A diet soda beverage is probably one drink every dieter feels good about drinking. After all, a diet soda contains no sugar, zero calories and no fat, right? Well, on the surface, yes… but in reality, diet sodas are actually something else. That diet cola that the dieter is chugging down every day is actually a wolf in sheep’s clothing when it comes to weight loss efforts and can lead to a host of diseases. Every person seeking optimum health and weight loss needs to understand the dangers of diet sodas and the reasons why they should not be consumed.
Reason 1. Diet sodas can cause mineral and bone density loss. Any types of carbonated beverage, but especially diet colas, contain phosphorus. This has been shown to contribute to bone loss by increasing acidity in the blood. Your body responds to this by stealing calcium from the bones which eventually leads to bone loss. And don’t think you need to consume diet colas all day for this to happen. According to scientist Katherine Tucker at Tufts University, just three colas a week may be enough to promote bone loss.
Reason 2. Drinking diet sodas can cause kidney decline. A Harvard medical study found that by consuming diet sodas, kidney function started declining. Scientists suspect the artificial sweeteners are the reason.
Reason 3. Diet sodas can cause disorder with the metabolism. According to a 2008 study at the University of Minnesota, having just one diet soda a day can cause havoc with one’s metabolism by causing metabolic syndrome. This increases cholesterol and can put one at risk for heart disease.
Reason 4. Diets sodas increase the risk of obesity. Surprised to see this one? Most people are. After all, drinking diet sodas are low in calories and part of many a dieter’s reduced calorie plans. Yet, studies have shown drinking just two diet sodas a day can increase the waistline by 500%. Why? Because diet sodas contain article sweeteners which disrupt the body’s natural ability to regulate caloric intake based on the sweetness of foods. What does this mean? Basically the more diet sodas you consume, the more likely you are to overeat. The artificial sweeteners trick your body into believing you are consuming sugar, so you want more. When you consume the artificial sweeteners found in diet sodas, your body mimics what happens when you consume processed sugar. Sugar stimulates your appetite and encourages you to overeat. An artificial sweetener will have the same effect, increasing your appetite and leading to weight gain.
Reason 5. Diet sodas can cause cell damage. In addition to the dangers of artificial sweeteners, scientists have discovered something else very alarming about diet soft drinks: they contain preservatives called Mold Inhibitors. These are commonly known as the preservatives sodium benzoate or potassium benzoate which is found in just about all diet carbonated drinks. These preservatives or chemicals can cause severe damage to the DNA in the Mitochondria according to Professor Peter Piper of molecular biology and biotechnology at the University of Sheffield in the U.K. Professor Piper states these chemicals can totally inhibit or inactivate our DNA. The Coke and Pepsi companies have since replaced sodium benzoate with the preservative potassium benzoate which is just as damaging.
HOW MARKETERS DECEIVE US
Anyone watching a diet soda commercial or seeing ad campaign on a billboard will show young, vibrant, sexy men and women with perfect bodies consuming a diet soda. The marketers deceptively lead us to believe that we can become just like them if we consume their product. This is a lie. In reality, drinking diet sodas will cause severe health problems for the five reasons mentioned earlier. But it does something else: it traps the consumer into coming back for more and more in the belief that they have to keep consuming the product in order to achieve the physical results of sex appeal and attractiveness the marketers promise. Don’t be deceived by their enticements. The markers will never deliver what they promise and can only guarantee health problems, many being irreversible.
HEALTHY AND SAFE ALTERNATIVES TO DANGEROUS DIET SOFT DRINKS
Diet sodas are very addictive and many find it difficult to find a safe alternative beverage if the alternative does not offer the “fizz” and “lift” a diet soda will give. The good news is that there are many healthy substitutes that can help break a diet soda addict away from these dangerous beverages.
- Plain soda water has the same fizz a diet soda has but without the aspartame, phosphoric acid and other toxic chemicals found in diet colas. Try plain soda water with slices of lemon to give you that same fizz and lift in replacement of a diet cola.
- A second alternative is sparkling water. This is just plain carbonated water that you can add lime or slices of strawberries for taste. The label should read just carbonated water and nothing else.
BEWARE OF OTHER BEVERAGES
A final word: stay away from diet alternatives such as sodas made with “real” sugar as the Coke advertising campaigns have been trying to promote. Whether made with real sugar or high fructose corn syrup, these carbonated beverages are just as bad as diet sodas and can eventually lead to obesity and diseases such as type II diabetes.
Keep these five reasons in mind when attempting to reach for that next diet soda. Try the healthy alternatives listed and watch your health increase and your weight loss efforts become a reality.
Fisher, Kristen. Diet Soda Connection to Bone Density Loss. 14 February 2014. http://www.livestrong.com/article/474948-diet-soda-connection-to-bone-density-loss/. 21 January 2015.
Oaklander, Mandy. 7 Side Eeffects of Drinking Diet Soda. n.d. August 2012. http://www.prevention.com/food/healthy-eating-tips/diet-soda-bad-you/messed-up-metabolism. 31 January 2015.
Smith, Roger. Flatulance Cures. n.d. n.d n.d. http://flatulencecures.com/soda-alternatives. 31 January 2015.