Recent studies have shown that diet beverages can actually lead to weight increase instead of the hoped-for weight loss. In short, diet drinks are not a very good addition to your diet. You may be thinking that you are cutting your sugar intake, which can lead to rotten teeth and a rotten physique, however, recent nutritionists have suggested that the diet-coke craze is getting out of control and that people are confusing the beverages with actual dieting. The hollow calories consumed in them are tricking our bodies into thinking they are getting full, and the body does not like to be tricked.
One common misconception about diet soda is the idea that drinking one gives you the green light to eat a bunch of junk. Just because you have a diet soda does not mean that you can scarf down a Big Mac. Drinking a diet cola does not substitute for actual dieting. It simply reduces some sugar and caloric intake during a meal. The amount of calories in a diet soda compared to a regular drink, zero rather than 150, is not big enough to allow you to pig out on a mountain of other junk food instead. People are ridiculous when it comes to "making up" the calories they have saved by drinking diet coke. It is absurd to walk into a fast-food joint, order a large cheeseburger, fries, a milkshake and then decide to add a little variety to the meal with a small Diet Coke. Does anyone see the problem with this? Americans need to get it through their heads that diet soda does not equal diet solved
A good way to avoid the diet soda problem is to completely rule out diet soda as a food group. There have been many studies that have explained the dangers of certain chemicals in diet soda, such as aspartame. Aspartame is the main type of artificial sweetener that goes into diet drinks and makes them taste so sweet. There have been battles over the safety of aspartame for years. There is no conclusive evidence on either side that aspartame should or should not be used in diet drinks or other diet substances. However, aside from aspartame, there are other problems with diet soda.
People believe that drinking diet soda gives them a viable reason to eat unhealthy food. Many Americans believe that drinking diet soda with any meal is in some way virtuous. The opposite is true. Diet soda is now being linked to obesity because people are eating more unhealthy food and topping it off with a diet soda to equal out the calories. This link between diet soda and obesity is not chemical; it is psychological.
Another reason for the link between diet soda and obesity is the attempted manipulation of satiation in our stomachs. Sharon P. Fowler, MPH, and colleagues at the University of Texas Health Science Center, San Antonio, have been researching the link between diet soda and obesity. In a recent article on WebMD Medical News, Fowler commented on this subject.
"What didn't surprise us was that total soft drink use was linked to overweight and obesity. What was surprising was that when we looked at people only drinking diet soft drinks, their risk of obesity was even higher." This information is surprising and disturbing. All along we thought that drinking diet soda could help shed pounds, but what Fowler found is that diet soda is a poundage-packer.
Many of you might be confused by this evidence. It seems ironic, right? Fowler explains the reasoning behind this data: "If you offer your body something that tastes like a lot of calories, but it isn't there, your body is alerted to the possibility that there is something there and it will search for the calories promised but not delivered. People think they can just fool the body. But maybe the body isn't fooled. If you are not giving your body those calories you promised it, maybe your body will retaliate by wanting more calories. Some soft drink studies do suggest that diet drinks stimulate appetite." Uh-oh! And here I thought that filling my stomach with liquid would trick it into thinking it was full.
There really is no good reason to drink diet soda because in the end you are going to wind up hungry or overweight. Try substituting water with soda whenever you get the urge to fill your stomach without filling up on calories. Water is better for you and has an infinite number of positive benefits for your body. If you can't rid yourself of diet soda cold turkey, at least try to cut out one can a day. Your body will thank you later.