Around the world people who love to take soda (what is known in Nigerian parlance as mineral) have strongly embraced the sugar-free version which the soft-drink industry has been actively marketing with enormous advertising budgets.
Sugar-free soft-drink, known in the United States as diet soda is made with aspartame, a sweetener derived from aspartic acid, which is an amino acid. Aspartame has about 200 times the sweetness of sugar but is far cheaper than sucrose, the normal sugar just about any knows, which was the main sugar previously used in the production of soft drinks.
A wide range of research findings on aspartame have put a question mark on it, such that it is now associated with certain medical disorders in vital organs of the body. New red flags have predictably been raised to warn people about the inherent dangers in excessive consumption of diet soda.
Be honest, how many diet sodas have you had today? Some people can stop at just one. Others rarely imbibe any, preferring water or juice or some other healthy beverage. The emerging facts show clearly that diet soda is not good for health.
1. Artificial sweeteners trigger painful headaches
Many diet sodas are sweetened with aspartame, a controversial sweetener that is 200 times sweeter than regular refined sugar. Some studies have linked the sweetener to headaches in some people, suggesting that it might trigger the unexplained pain.
Diet soda can cause sudden rashes
It may not be greasy, but diet soda is an absolute disaster for your skin. The spike it causes in your blood sugar can trigger hormone fluctuations and breakouts from inflammation.
You are likely to be depressed
A survey of 263,925 adults in the United States revealed some frightening correlations between soda and depression. The study suggested that consumption of diet sodas was associated with an increased chance of a depression diagnosis. Soda drinkers overall were 30 percent more likely to be depressed — diet soda added another 22 percent of risk into the equation.
Avid drinkers have lower bone density
Drinking diet soda ruins you to your bones — literally. In a 2006 study, women who drank diet soda had significantly lower bone mineral density than those who abstained. Low bone mineral density can set you up for osteoporosis later in life.
You may have mood swings
Diet sodas cause the blood sugar to fluctuate, as it makes your body falsely think it is getting sugar. In some cases, blood glucose levels are affected, though not all types of sweeteners produce this effect. This can make you irritable, moody, and a little snippy to the unsuspecting people around you. This is part of why some nutritionists say Donald Trump’s diet makes him moody — he loves a particular brand of diet soda.
Alcohol-diet soda mixture, more intoxicating
People who love to have a mix of strong alcoholic drink like vodka and diet soda increase the speed of intoxication as diet soda mixed with any sort of spirit is bound to make you feel drunker than the liquor would on its own. Studies show that diet soda drinks result in higher blood alcohol concentrations.
Sugar slows down the absorption of the alcohol, giving you a steady, controllable buzz. Artificial sweeteners, on the other hand, have no such effect. Some sweeteners are suspected to spike your insulin, though the studies are inconclusive, resulting in a crash that leaves you feeling tired and foggy on top of your already quickened intoxication.
Diet soda increases risk of metabolic syndrome, diabetes
You do not want metabolic syndrome — that’s a metabolism disorder that can cause diabetes, heart problems, weight fluctuations, and even death. Diet soda is known to increase your risk of the deadly disorder by up to 30 percent. It’s even more likely than that to contribute to your risk of diabetes. Some artificial sweeteners are suspected to mess your insulin response, though the studies are inconclusive, increasing the likelihood that yours becomes irregular.
Difficulty in concentrating
After you drink diet soda, your blood sugar crashes and you might become dehydrated. That’s a killer combination — you probably won’t be able to concentrate very well. The caffeine jolt you wanted from your cold cup of soda might not really do much for your attention span. You’re better off with a cup of coffee. Not coffee soda — yes, that’s a thing. We mean regular old, healthy coffee.
Diet soda puts you at high risk for hypertension
Diet soda drinkers are far more likely to experience high blood pressure than those who avoid it and opt for a healthier beverage. Even if you avoid the foods that could put your blood pressure through the roof, your zero-calorie cola habit could be pushing you over the edge.
It’s bad for kidneys
The National Kidney Foundation in a study found that diet soda is bad news for the kidneys. The study found that women who drank several diet sodas a day showed a significant decline in kidney function. Your kidneys are really important — they filter out the toxins from your body.
Leads to addiction
Diet soda has been found to produce addition in people who consume it. Hardcore addicts take up to 11 sodas a day. The more you drink diet soda, the more you crave it. There is a biological addictive response to the beverage. Dopamine and glutamate, two neurotransmitters in the brain’s reward center, are released from the caffeine and aspartame. Basically, the soda spikes your brain to crave it again after you finish your can, chasing the next soda-fueled high.
It can cause dehydration
This soda type messes with the hormone response. Hormones from the kidneys are responsible for keeping your fluids balanced. Your kidneys signal your brain to release an anti-diuretic hormone when it needs to conserve water. Diet soda, specifically the caffeine in many diet sodas, disrupts the process. You retain less water and will probably have to pee.
Diet soda raise the risk of heart attack
Researchers at the University of Miami, found that regularly drinking diet soda can significantly escalate the risk of a heart attack. Regular soda drinkers who opted for the sugary drink instead did not have as strong a risk. You might be better off with the sugary soda, or better still water.
It can lead to muscle loss
Most diet sodas contain phosphoric acid. Phosphoric acid can disrupt the nutrient absorption process in the body. Taken often, diet soda can prevent skin and muscles from getting the nutrients they need. This can speed up the aging process, giving you more wrinkles and a weaker frame.
Causes problems during pregnancy
In Denmark, a study found that just one diet soda a day was associated with a 38 percent increased risk of preterm delivery. Four sodas a day increased the risk by 78 percent. So if you’re pregnant, you should quit the habit immediately.
It can lead to brain damage
Boston University medical researchers found that diet soda drinkers are up to three times more likely to develop Alzheimer’s or dementia or suffer from a stroke than people who didn’t drink the soda. Please give diet soda red card.
Diet soda produces carcinogens in the liver
When aspartame is digested, it creates a by-product called methanol. Methanol is a toxin, which the liver converts into formaldehyde, which is itself a carcinogen. So drinking diet soda could potentially release cancer-causing chemicals into your body.
Adapted from www.msn.com.