The Truth About Diet Soda and Your Health.

DietSodaDiet soda has been the saving grace for many thousands of dieters..

Desperate for just one sip of that sugary, syrupy, carbonated nectar that most all of us have known and loved at one point or another.

The problem is, diet soda hasn’t actually been the “saving grace” so many thought it was..

In fact, It would be more appropriate to label it a crutch, a justification, a “success”, a distraction..

But what the marketing of diet soda has really done was divert a massive amount of people’s energies – that would’ve otherwise been used to make changes that were actually worthwhile.

If it seems like a bit of a stretch to say that a “massive ” amount of human energy has been wasted directly as the result of diet soda.. Well, I suppose I could see that point.

Just bear with me for a minute.. Consider that many, many thousands of people drink soda on daily and consistent basis.. I’ve personally known people that literally drank Dr. Pepper as if it was water.

“Soda Addiction” is an absolute huge problem these days.

If you could agree to that – then surely you could see the massive problem that “diet” soda represents?

Diet Soda is nothing more than a marketing trick to.. wait for it.. keep people drinking sodas. Climatic, I know.

cigaretteWhat Diet Soda and Cigarette Filters Have In Common.

When cigarettes were first rolled out to the public, the tobacco companies had to deal with quite a bit of negative PR surrounding the possible negative health effects associated with smoking.

Doctors denounced smoking and the public shied away from the nasty habit, initially.

Never ones to give up easily, the tobacco companies hired advertising and marketing firms to help them solve the somewhat inconvenient fact that the product that they wanted to sell kills people.

It would seem an almost insurmountable task, no? Take a product like cigarettes – that is suspected to kill those who use it, and turn them into an everyday normal thing?.. Safe for even the women of the day to enjoy on occasion.. How?

Simple: Add a filter. Problem solved.

If current smoker cancer rates are any indication at all, I think it’s safe to assume that the filter idea didn’t exactly work as planned.

But it did.

The filters on cigarettes were never meant to make them safer.. They were meant to provide people with an excuse.. a justification… an argument for themselves.

The same can be said about diet soda. So many people that are addicted to drinking sodas, but know that it’s detrimental their health, have to turned to diet sodas as a “healthier” alternative.

Once that change is made, it’s almost as if that problem no longer exists.. Why would someone ever quit drinking diet sodas? Diet sodas aren’t the problem… They’re the solution to the problem of being addicted to regular sodas.

Smoking filtered cigarettes weren’t the problem.. They were the solution.

And so the intended mental associations are made… defenses are dropped.. and the habits are formed.

Are we saying that drinking diet soda is as bad as smoking filtered cigarettes? No.. That would be an impossible determination to make.

We’re saying stop drinking diet soda.. It’s bad for you.. and that you’ve been had. Sorry.

Just How Bad is Diet Soda for Your Health?

To be fair, most of the studies that have been done on the various chemical ingredients found in diet soda are skewed, and almost useless.

Who knows, maybe that uselessness is intended. I mean, if you basically drown a rat in just about any ingredient in diet soda – there’s bound to be negative side effects.. Seems like a well intended scientist would know better than to waste time doing such experiments, then again, I guess it’s not a waste if you’re getting paid.

And that’s basically what’s happened in most of the scientific studies done on these ingredients. The tests that are used to “verify” just how safe these chemicals are for human consumption are almost always done on rats – And these rats are usually given such ridiculously high doses of these compounds that negative effects are an obvious, and almost fore gone conclusion.

Like I said.. intentional? Another “cigarette filter” marketing ploy? I’ll leave that up to you to decide.

That said.. There are growing reports from more and more people that claim to have severely negative reactions to many of these chemical sweetener alternatives like aspartame, splenda, sucrose, and whatever other chemicals that are being used.

This combined with negative, although somewhat skewed, scientific testing results.. And lets not forget to mention that the stuff literally tastes like a chemical cocktail..

 

Something is definitely up, but regardless, we’re left with a somewhat inconclusive evidence.

All in all.. There’s no doubt the data on the dangers of these artificial sweeteners is exaggerated.. but that doesn’t mean they’re safe.. far from it.

The safety of the artificial sweeteners being used in diet sodas are just one of many concerns. Another one of the main concerns is the phosphoric acid content. It’s said to slowly deteriorate bones, by leeching calcium from them.

The soda companies are well aware of this public safety concern..

In a recent marketing campaign Coca Cola learned just how pervasive this concern really is:

cokebackfire

 

Not exactly the “happy story” they were looking for, I’m sure.. Obviously, people are concerned with the potential side-effects that some of these chemical compounds found in diet soda may cause. As they should be.

Unfortunately – just like with the artificial sweeteners – there isn’t really anything conclusive, scientifically speaking, that says phosphoric acid actually deteriorates bones, but..

Where There’s Smoke, There’s Fire

With a lack of conclusive information available on the safety of diet sodas.. it’s hard for many to decide whether to drink or avoid them.

In general, you want to avoid chemicals. You don’t need studies to figure that out. With that said.. It’s close to impossible to do that in this day and age.

Probably the best plan is to just completely avoid diet sodas as much as possible. Is drinking a diet coke “every once in a while” going to kill you? Probably not.. You’ll probably be just fine. Nobody can say for certain, of course.

I think there’s enough anecdotal evidence (not to mention plain common sense) to say that diet soda is definitely not something you would want to consume on a daily and consistent basis. Especially if you are a pregnant or a nursing mother.

So.. While you may be able to safely drink a diet soda maybe a couple of times a week, without being too concerned about adverse health effects.. Why would you want to?

Diet Sodas Make You Gain Weight.

It’s somewhat of an irony, but many recent studies are showing that participants that are drinking diet soda  actually gain more weight than the participants that drank regular soda, when all other variables are equal.

This is leaving many scientists and nutritionists scratching their heads trying to figure out just why this is.. Of course, there are no shortage of theories..

One theory that makes sense in a very direct way, is that diet soda  used as a sort of way to satiate the sugar cravings ( just eat fruit! ), are actually doing nothing but delaying that sugar craving, and not satiating at all.

This delaying of the sweets craving usually only ends up more total calories consumed. People suck down chemically laced diet sodas to quench a sugar craving.. but the sugar craving is ever present.. leading to an extra “cheat day” for the week.. or that extra late night snack that you deserve sooo much.

In short.. Many accredited people think that drinking diet soda may somehow mess with the “hunger signals” that your brain uses to control the amounts of food you eat.

Truth is: We just haven’t figured out what the reason really is for this odd occurrence.

One theory that I haven’t really seen discussed is one of insulin sensitivity..

Is it possible that by drinking regular sugar containing sugars for so long.. That when your tongue tastes that sweetness… It’s time to release insulin into the bloodstream to shuttle that glucose along, regardless of the actual substance that is causing that sweet sensation.

So, in effect, the body would have trained itself to release specific hormones in anticipation of the nutrients that it “expects” a specific taste, like sweetness, to accompany.

There have been tons of developments in recent years that have shown that the plasticity of the brain and the way in which it interacts with the human body, could be dramatically different from the way science once collectively thought.

It certainly is possible… If anybody has their own theories or would like to chime in on ours.. Feel free to chime in below, in the comments section…

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Comments

  1. Michelle says:

    Its easier to fool people then to convince them that they have been fooled…Mark Twain

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