Soda also popular as soft drink, pop or cola developed in the 18th century when scientists started synthesizing carbonated water. The soda part of the term is derived from the large amounts of sodium salts diffused in the water. A soft drink traditionally contains carbonated water, sweetener and natural and/or artificial flavoring. They may also contain caffeine, colorings and other added preservatives. The sweetener added to this concoction is high fructose corn syrup or some sugar substitute in case of diet.
According to the CDC (Centre for Disease Control) a typical 12 ounce can of soda contains 37-42 grams of sugar which is equivalent to 7-10 teaspoons. The diet stuff with its claims of a healthy sugar substitute isn’t any better. On the contrary, research suggests that diet soda drinkers have an increased likelihood of obesity and diabetes. A single can of soda contains 140 calories and does nothing to satiate or curb your hunger. Consuming a can every day for a month will have you gaining your quickest 3 pounds ever.
Brimming with fructose, soda does not lower the hunger hormone- ghrelin- or stimulate fullness the same way glucose and fibers do. So when you consume a soft drink you’re just adding it on top of your usual calorie intake and receiving no nutrition, whatsoever. A study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that fructose is absorbed in the body differently than other sugars which tamper with your insulin levels and metabolism. Fructose as special as it is can only be metabolized by one organ- the liver. When you consume too much fructose your liver becomes overloaded and turns it into fat. Over time this can contribute to fatty liver diseases.
Do you believe switching to diet soda is doing you and your sugar levels any favours? Think again. The American Diabetes Association reported that consuming one or more sodas per day compared to none at all increases the risk of type 2 diabetes by 67%. Similar research published in the Yale Journal of Biology and Medicine, suggests that artificial sweeteners exacerbate your sugar craving.
Insulin- a hormone made in your pancreas- allows your body to disintegrate glucose, preparing it for cellular absorption and energy consumption. Drinking soda desensitizes the effect of insulin in the cells, turning them resistant. This causes your insulin levels to spike, encouraging your pancreas to produce more of it to overcompensate and remove the excess glucose from your bloodstream. This condition, known as insulin resistance is arguably the main corruptor behind metabolic syndrome.
Throughout our childhood, we’ve been told to avoid sweet things, to prevent tooth decay. Imagine the damage a single can of soda, containing 40 grams of sugar, can inflict on your teeth. Soda contains carbonic and phosphoric acid, which can wreak havoc on your dental health. Studies have shown the deleterious effect of soda on human teeth; left in soda for some time, human teeth will start dissolving. Despite all the toothpaste companies claiming enamel regrowth- it's all a hoax, once eroded enamel cannot be reformed. Sugar, preservatives and artificial coloring present in soda can get trapped beneath your gums. If not paid attention to and cleaned properly, the trapped particles become a buffet for bacteria, causing deterioration, infection and destruction of gum tissue which is nearly impossible to regenerate.
It has been well established that sugar intake increases risk factors for heart diseases. According to a study published in the American Heart Journal- Circulation, consuming a 12-ounce soda a day, increases the risk of a heart attack by 20%. The liability of a stroke increases with each sip of soda. It directly influences the fat stored in your body, which when in excess can harden the arteries, including the ones close to your brain.
Grout is a medical condition, blamed for the occurrence of inflammation and pain in your joints. It usually occurs when the level of uric acid in the blood increases to such an extent that it starts crystallizing. Fructose is the main carbohydrate known to instigate the rise of uric acid.
Moreover, soda contains sugars, phosphates and chemicals which have proven to accelerate the ageing process at the cellular level. Soda’s dehydrating caffeine promotes puffiness, fine lines, wrinkles and dryness. The caffeine in soda has a diuretic effect, which if not supplemented adequately with water, can lead to slower metabolism, electrolyte imbalance and water retention.
Lymphatic damage, kidney disorders, infertility, heart lesions, leptin resistance, migraines, insomnia- the list goes on and on. Eliminate soda from your diet ASAP. Start small. Try to have water with you at all times, add fresh fruits for flavor and variety. If you find yourself craving the fizziness consider switching to sparkling water or kombucha. Alternatives to soda are readily available. Paying additional attention to the nutritional information of the products you purchase will help you make better and healthier life choices.