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Thursday, August 4, 2011

The Truth About Diet Soda

In the CNY section of Tuesday's (August 2, 2011) Post Standard the headline read "Diet soda could be making you FATTER".

FINALLY!!!  This information has hit the media!  I have been telling people this for years and most people roll their eyes at me and say "whatever Mike, diet soda has no calories so it can't possibly make you fat."  Now that this information has hit the media, maybe people will start believing me when I tell them diet soda is making them FAT!

"The study looked at 474 people, ages 65 to 74, and found that, on average, those who drank diet sodas ended up with waistlines that increased three times more than those who avoided them.  People who consumed more than two diet sodas a day had waistlines that increased five times more than the non-diet-soda drinkers, which included people who drank water, juices and even regular sodas..."
So how is it possible that a zero Calorie drink can cause you to gain weight?  The article mentions a few theories such as people over eating in other areas because they are consuming a zero calorie drink; "Big Macs and super-sized fries and diet Cokes."  I believe it is more a function of how our bodies react to the artificial sweeteners.
"Our bodies are smarter than we think.  When we suck down sweet things, our bodies register the sugary taste and wait for the accompanying calories..."
When no Calories come our bodies get thrown off balance.  Our body then craves sweet foods to make up for the Calories that did not come when we consumed the artificial sweetener.  So we go eat a couple slices of cake to feed our craving.

There is also the thought, which I agree with, that artificial sweeteners can lead to cancer.  According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services "studies of FDA-approved sweeteners have not demonstrated clear evidence of an association with cancer in humans."  In other words; there is evidence, but performing dietary cancer studies is really difficult because there are too many variables that are impossible to control, which makes every study conflict with other study's findings.  If you look at the studies you will see there is a lot of evidence showing artificial sweeteners DO lead to cancer and a lot of studies show artificial sweeteners DON'T lead to cancer.

Any time you put an unnatural substance in your body, there is a chance cancer can develop.  Perhaps artificial sweeteners do not lead directly to cancer, but possible indirectly?  It has been proven that sugar feeds cancer cells which speed up cancer growth, so maybe artificial sweeteners trigger certain hormones which lead to accelerated cancer growth?

It is obvious we don't know all the facts about artificial sweeteners.  If there is any question that a product leads to cancer then I am going to play it safe and stay away from that product.  I've told people hundreds of times, "Regular soda will make you fat and give you diabetes (because of the high sugar content), but diet soda will make you fat and give you cancer (artificial sweeteners).  No matter how you look at it SODA IS NOT GOOD FOR YOU!  So take the safe route and stop drinking soda all together!

2 comments:

I am not a fan of soda at all (more because of the carbonation and it's effects on my stomach). I just wanted to point out that I dont like this study either. I think the age group chosen for the test is interesting. I feel like that age group is very different from other age groups. Would like to see it done with a more routine age group (or across age groups).
Soda is still a useless drink though.

I agree the study isn't the best, but I love that the article in the paper is bringing attention to diet soda. There are a lot of people out there that think it's good for you just because it says "diet". Soda has no nutritional value, whether it's diet or not.

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