Diet soda is marketed just like it says, to make you feel like you should be drinking it on a diet. And with as many people around the world trying to get control of their weight, this is probably pretty appealing. They tell you that you can still drink your favorite super sweet carbonated beverage with the same taste as the regular with none of the calories and lose weight.

But these dreamy models with slim waistlines swigging on diet colas are nothing but good marketing. Diet sodas not only hinder weight loss, in the long run, it could actually be making us fatter and even worse, destroying our health. So where has this beverage and all of this marketing steered us wrong? Well, let’s take a look at the effect of drinking diet sodas.

Top 5 Reasons You Should Avoid Diet Soda

  1. Increases Abdominal Fat – Diet soda, in a 2015 study, was shown to be associated with increased abdominal fat. It can dull your sensitivity to sweets. Things that are naturally full of sugar should register as sweet and with a dulled sense of sweet, you could over consume the foods that would usually trigger you to stop eating after a while. It also has the ability to negatively affect the feeling of being full, and your body doesn’t know to stop even if you have consumed enough calories. This can lead to overeating and eat way more than you need, which leads to weight gain.
  2. Triggers Insulin Spikes – Diet soda still triggers an insulin response from the body as if you consumed real sugar. Even if you think you’re sparing your body the insulin response, you really haven’t. Your body is responding just the same as real sugar and constant spiking of the insulin system can lead to damaging it in the long run.
  3. Disrupts Gut Bacteria – Diet soda contains phosphoric acid that can disrupt the bacteria in your gut that helps metabolize nutrients from our food. It could literally be robbing your body of its chance to absorb vital nutrients when you consume foods that you need.

    ⚡ Related: Learn What 10 Foods Can Help Support Your Gut Health

  4. Raises Risk of Disease – Drinking diet soda raises the risk of metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes. Drinking diet soda gives you a 36% greater risk of developing metabolic syndrome and it also has a 67% greater incidence of type 2 diabetes than those who do not drink it. It’s no surprise to see that people who drink diet soda were found to have developed higher fasting glucose levels after starting to drink it.
  5. Raises Parathyroid Hormones – Studies show that after drinking diet soda the levels of parathyroid hormone (PTH) rise. This hormone is present in the body when calcium levels get too low and stimulate your body to break down your bones for calcium. Researchers believe that this could be why there is an underlying connection between diet soda consumption and lower bone density in women who drink it.

If you needed just one reason to stop drinking diet soda, you could stop at it’s derailing and opposite effects on your weight loss. But taking just a closer look, it’s clear that diet soda is more harmful in the long run on our bodies than just extra fat.

Besides the potential to rob our bodies of essential nutrients that we should be absorbed in our gut, risks for metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes go up with consumption. And of course, as everyone looks for reasons why we are calcium deficient, despite all the milk we drink, it’s easy to see that you might be hurting your own bones by drinking diet soda.

So, instead of ditching regular soda for diet soda, ditch both for water. It’s the beverage your body really wants, and can actually improve your health instead of damaging it. By eating a nutritious diet, like the ones found on our Custom Meal Plansand regularly exercising, you can not only lower your risk of diseases such as metabolic syndrome and diabetes, you will also start to see visual results as your body becomes healthier and you lose that extra weight.

Resources:

Purdy, M. (2015). Diet Soda May Lead to More Belly Fat. Message Magazine, 20-20. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com.ezproxy.utpb.edu/login.aspx?direct=true&db=s3h&AN=109261416&site=ehost-live
Guo, X., Park, Y., Freedman, N., Sinha, R., Hollenbeck, A., Blair, A., & Chen, H. (2014). Sweetened Beverages, Coffee, and Tea and Depression Risk among Older US Adults. PLoS ONE. Retrieved November 30, 2015, from http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0094715#s3
Nettleton, J., Lutsey, P., Wang, Y., Lima, J., Michos, E., & Jacobs, D. (2009). Diet Soda Intake and Risk of Incident Metabolic Syndrome and Type 2 Diabetes in the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA). Diabetes Care, 688-694. Retrieved November 30, 2015, from http://care.diabetesjournals.org/content/32/4/688.full
Online Library | Articles | Diet Soda May Deplete Calcium From Bone | DrFuhrman.com. (n.d.). Retrieved November 30, 2015, from https://www.drfuhrman.com/library/diet_soda_deplete_calcium_from_bone.aspx
Alpert, B., & Farris, P. (2013). The sugar detox: Lose weight, feel great, and look years younger. Boston: Da Capo Lifelong.

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