If You Drink Soda, It’s Probably The Worst Thing You Do To Yourself (even worse than smoking!)
Sodas are worse for your health than eating sugary junk foods and may even be worse for you than smoking. Soda is proven to be addictive and consumption has been clinically linked to increased blood pressure, high blood sugar, weight gain, kidney disease, heart disease, diabetes, depression, asthma, headaches, ear infections, joint and muscle problems, developmental delays, ADHD, heavy metal toxicity, yeast infections, urinary tract infections, candidiasis, other increased pathogenic activity, increased PMS symptoms, brain damage, liver toxicity, tooth decay, acne, mood swings, decreased fertility in men and women, and so much more!
In other words, drinking soda feeds infections, disrupts the gut microbiome and the metabolic processes, degrades cells, causes chronic illness, exacerbates virtually all chronic illness symptoms, and rapidly ages the body.
This is true for sugary sodas, diet sodas, and most energy drinks.
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The Sugar in Soda
A 20-ounce bottle of Coke contains approximately 65 grams sugar which equates to about or 16 teaspoons of sugar. There are 39 grams of sugar in a 12 oz can of Coke, which is equivalent to about 10 teaspoons of sugar. Most sodas that aren’t artificially sweetened are made with high fructose corn syrup, so the teaspoons of sugar are just equivalents.
The American Heart Association recommends that Americans consume no more than five to nine teaspoons of sugar per day.1 We contend that nine teaspoons of processed sugar are too much. Even one is too much. We don’t recommend any refined sugar.
A 20 oz soda has 2.5 servings. A standard serving size is eight ounces. There are 100 calories in one eight ounce serving of soda. These calories are void of nutrition. There’s an easy trick to figure out how many teaspoons of sugar a food has: divide the total sugar grams by four.
A 20-ounce bottle has 65 grams of sugar; 65÷4 = 16.25 teaspoons of sugar.
A can of coke has 35 grams of sugar; 35÷4=8.75 teaspoons of sugar.
If you’re trying to stick with the American Heart Association’s recommendations of no more than nine teaspoons of sugar per day you’re pretty much done after a can of soda.
Beverages are the most significant source of added sugars in the American diet. The average American drinks almost 42 gallons of sweetened beverages a year. That’s about 39 pounds of sugar.2
Our genes are arranged within double-stranded molecules of DNA called chromosomes. At the ends of the chromosomes are stretches of DNA called telomeres. Telomeres protect the ends of chromosomes from deterioration and from fusion with other chromosomes. When chromosomes replicate, the enzymes that duplicate DNA cannot continue their duplication all the way to the end of a chromosome. Consequently, when a chromosome is duplicated it is also shortened. The telomeres act as disposable buffers at the ends of chromosomes, protecting the genes from being shortened. Over time, with cell replication, the telomere ends become progressively shorter.
Telomere length is positively correlated with lifespan, and shorter telomeres are associated with aging and an increased risk of age-related diseases. Sugar-sweetened soda consumption is associated with shorter telomeres. “Regular consumption of sugar-sweetened sodas might influence metabolic disease development through accelerated cell aging.” 3 The good news is that telomere length has been shown to increase with positive dietary and lifestyle changes.
It’s Not Just the Sugar
Plain sparkling water is slightly acidic. We don’t believe these weak acids acidify the body significantly but the carbonation may cause some damage to the teeth’s enamel even without the sugar (diet sodas have been shown to cause tooth decay). There is also a theory that the phosphate used in some carbonated beverages inhibits calcium absorption. But neither of these issues compares to the damage sugar and artificial sweeteners do to the body.
Artificial colors and flavors in many soft drinks have been shown to cause hyperactivity in children. Yellow 5 has been associated with irritability, depression, and insomnia. Caramel coloring produces a chemical called 4-methylimidazole (4-MEI). The chemical may increase the risks of developing cancer. But, again, these risks are nearly negligible when compared to the health impacts of the sweeteners.
Artificial sweeteners increase hunger and make it harder to enjoy healthier foods.
When we consume artificial sweeteners our brain thinks real sugar is coming into the body. We produce insulin to deal with the sugar that’s not there. When the sugar doesn’t arrive the insulin has nothing to store. Elevated insulin causes inflammation and depresses the immune system.7 Blood sugar temporarily drops but long-term use of artificial sweeteners raises blood sugar levels overall.8 They also alter gut bacteria, disrupt normal serotonin levels, slow metabolism, and they alter how the body responds to insulin and glucose, which can lead to glucose intolerance.9,10
Studies suggest that drinking diet soda is associated with metabolic syndrome,11 a mix of conditions that includes: high blood sugar, increased blood pressure, and ironically enough, obesity. This can lead to diabetes, heart disease, and stroke. Artificial sweeteners have been tied to Type 2 diabetes, Hypertension, Cardiovascular Disease, and cancer.11,13
You can definitely compare the intense pleasure I get from a cold can [of soda] to having a cigarette.” – Wouter, People Explain How Soda Addiction Is Ruining Their Life
Recommended: Sugar Leads to Depression – World’s First Trial Proves Gut and Brain are Linked (Protocol Included)
Soda May Cause Headaches and Migraines
Caffeine and high fructose corn syrup are also common triggers for migraines.
Soda Messes Up Our Microbiome
Sugar (including dextrose, table sugar, and high fructose corn syrup) and artificial sweeteners have all been shown to disrupt gut bacteria, promote pathogenic activity, and increase the occurrence of yeast infections and urinary tract infections problems.
Soda and Diet Soda Are Making Us Fat
“The rise in soft drink consumption mirrors the national march toward obesity.” – Soda making Americans drink themselves fat
Obviously, sugar causes weight gain, but so does diet soda:
Several studies have proved conclusively that drinking diet soda is associated with weight gain.”
“Those who drank more than 3 of these drinks per day were more than twice as likely to become obese in the next 7 to 8 years.” – Here’s the Science That Explains Why Drinking Diet Soda Makes You Gain Weight
“And for another 8-year-long study between 1979-1988, participants who started out at a normal weight and drank an average of 21 diet beverages a week faced DOUBLE the risk of becoming overweight or obese by the end of the study, compared to people who avoided diet beverages completely.” – What drinking diet soda does to your body and brain
Soda Causes Diabetes
We all know sugar leads to diabetes and high-fructose corn syrup may even be worse (countries that use HFCS in their food supply had a 20 percent higher prevalence of diabetes than countries that did not use it 14). And artificial sweeteners fair no better.
A report published by the Washington Post stated that long-term use of foods and drinks containing artificial sweeteners are associated with a higher risk of Type 2 diabetes.
Diet Soda and Sugary Drinks May Lead To Stroke and Dementia
High-fructose corn syrup causes cholesterol and triglycerides levels to rise. High-sugar diets lead to diabetes. High cholesterol, high triglycerides, and diabetes increase the likelihood of strokes and dementia.
But diet soda drinkers have a higher risk of stroke and dementia compared with those who consumed conventionally sweetened soda, according to research published in the American Heart Association’s journal.15
Soda Vs. Smoking
According to this study, drinking a 20-ounce soda every day ages your cells as much as habitual smoking, an astonishing 4.6 years of aging at the cellular level.
The study, published in the Journal of Public Health, analyzed data from 5,300 Americans, ages 20 to 65: those who reported daily soda slurping were found to have significantly stunted telomeres. Telomeres, the little caps at the end of your chromosomes, are essential in regulating the lifespan of your cells, and shorter telomeres have been linked to shorter life spans, diabetes, and cancer.” – Is Soda Worse Than Cigarettes?
“Research indicates daily consumption of a 20-ounce soda (though the study didn’t say over how long a time period) correlated to nearly five years of increased aging. This is comparable to the effects smoking cigarettes have on aging.” – If You Would Never Smoke a Cigarette but Still Drink Soda, Read This
Soda Makes Us Older
Soda makes us age faster. It influences metabolic disease development through accelerated cell aging. If you’re not off soda yet, hopefully now you’re ready to kick the habit. Once you remove soda from your life your body will begin to feel much better, provided you don’t replace it with another bad habit. Waking up will feel better, going to sleep will be easier, moving will feel better, thinking will be clearer, joints will hurt less, wounds will heal faster, healthy food will taste better, allergies will lessen or disappear, and everything in your body will work better.