When you decided to make some changes to your eating habits, especially that five soda a day habit you’re had for years, you figured, “I’ll switch to diet soda. It’s zero calories so that’s perfectly fine.” In a way, you were correct. You’re definitely benefiting by saving yourself over 600 calories a day and over 150 grams of sugar but switching to diet soda isn’t without its consequences. I’ll put you on to 3 reasons why. Let me learn ya something…
1. Artificial sweeteners are no bueno. Though artificial sweeteners like aspartame (Equal) and sucralose (Splenda) do proclaim to be zero calories and are multiple times sweeter than ordinary sugar, the fact that remains that they are artificial. With regular usage, they have often been reported to cause problems as minor as skin rashes and diarrhea and as major as seizures and cancer. Your body can’t process it as well as it does natural sugar. Despite not being sugar, they’ve also been known to raise your blood sugar just as much table sugar does. Zero calories does not mean zero effects unless we’re talking about water.
2. Diet soda can make you fat. I know what you’re thinking. Diet soda has no calories so how can it make me fat, right? Well there are a couple of ways. While artificial sweeteners definitely taste sweet, they only fool your body by giving the illusion of sweet. So while it satisfies your body’s craving for sweet, it still craves actual sugar and it increases your overall appetite because you’re essentially ingesting fake food. Constant imbibing of artificial sweetener only serves to increase your body’s craving for the real thing which could eventually lead to overeating and binging. So you may very well end up getting those same 600 calories back that you saved from soda in other ways.
3. Caffeine and no health benefits. There are no health benefits in soda. Regular soda is a can/bottle f empty calories serving to only make you fat and fill you with sugar. Diet soda, as an alternative, still has no health benefits other than attempting to lower your daily calorie count. Diet soda is full of caffeine and may fill your caffeine craving if that’s what you’re in search of but if that’s your goal, I recommend coffee over soda. Coffee has been known to have health benefits such as helping fight cancer and Parkinson’s but you have to be careful with that as well because you fall into the rut of sugar vs. artificial sweeteners again
My suggestion? Get more sleep, eat more natural forms of sugar like fruit, and exercise regularly. Then you won’t need caffeine as much.
Now, I’m not saying you should never drink soda. If you drink one or two a week, that’s fine. It won’t kill you. You want regular not diet? Go for it. But if you’re a chronic soda drinker, diet soda should only be drunk as an intermediary to phase out your soda habit not as a permanent solution. Ultimately, you want at least 80% of your daily liquid calories to come from drinking plain water. No sugars or sweeteners to worry about and all the benefits.