In the not-so-distant past, diet soda seemed like the ideal solution for losing weight while still being able to enjoy a sweet, caffeinated beverage. However, recent studies show that there are a number of side effects that can be caused by drinking diet soda that may not make it worth the reduced calories. In addition, there is no significant correlation between drinking diet soda and weight loss. Many people who consume diet soda find that they struggle with their weight just as much as someone who drinks regular soda.
Most diet sodas include aspartame, a low-calorie sweetener. This sweetener is known by other names such as Equal, NutraSweet, Equal-Measure, and Spoonful. Several health disorders have been linked to the consumption of large amount of aspartame, including brain lesions, brain tumors, memory loss, chronic headaches, fibromyalgia, leukemia, lymphoma, and peripheral nerve cancer.
Diet soda contains high levels of phosphate, which leeches calcium from the bones. When consumed occasionally, you may not experience significant calcium loss. However, consuming diet soda on a daily basis can put you at much higher risk for osteoporosis and stress fractures.
Some studies show that diet soda triggers what is known as a “cephalic phase response.” In other words, your body is “tricked” into thinking that sugar is being consumed due to the sweetness of diet soda. When this happens, the brain sends signals for the body to release insulin from the pancreas. It is also believed that signals are sent to the body to slow down the fat-burning process while the urge to eat may also increase. Of course, this outcome is not good for people trying to lose weight. This outcome is also dangerous for people with type 2 diabetes who suffer from insulin resistance.
Consuming diet soda on a regular basis can put the body significantly out of balance as far as hunger regulation is concerned. Your body associates sweetness with calories. Diet soda separates sweetness from calories, which does not allow your body to properly regulate feelings of hunger. Again, this may defeat the purpose of diet soda altogether. Many people who drink diet soda every day find that they are just as hungry, if not more hungry than usual, due to an unbalanced hunger-regulation system.
At the 2011 American Stroke Association’s International Stroke Conference, data was presented that showed the link between diet soda consumption and heart disorders. People who consumed diet soda every day were shown to have a 48% higher risk of vascular problems, including stroke, than those who didn’t consume diet soda.
Diet Soda in Moderation or Quitting Diet Soda Cold Turkey
Medical researchers are divided as to whether diet soda in moderation is okay or if it should be avoided altogether. If you have a full-fledged diet soda addiction, then it will help to simply cut down on the number of diet sodas you drink each day. Replace diet soda with healthier beverages that are low in calories, but still offer a sweet taste. Iced tea sweetened with a touch of agave syrup (or other natural sweetener) will offer both the sugary taste and the caffeine you crave. With time, you will feel less inclined to drink as much, or any, diet soda. If you want to totally eliminate dependencies on sugar, caffeine, and alcohol you may want to try the Beachbody Ultimate Reset.
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