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Diet Soda
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I was standing in a grocery store checkout line visiting with a well-known preventative medicine doctor. Wanting to be health-minded, I had chosen a diet soda to drink. “See?” I said to him. “I’m choosing diet soda because there’s no sugar in it.” I was surprised when he replied, “Actually, a regular soda would be better for you than a diet one because of all the additives.” His response surprised me. But I did some research and discovered that he was right.

I looked at the ingredients on a diet soda can and wondered what names such as aspartame, phosphoric acid, and potassium benzoate were doing to my body. An MSN Health and Fitness article confirmed that diet soda doesn’t belong in our diets. “The Truth About Diet Soda” teaches that there are some facts we need to know about these popular drinks.1

Facts We Need to Know

First, just because a soda boasts of being “diet” doesn’t mean it will prevent weight gain. The drink may have only five fewer calories per serving. And current news from a John Hopkins study shows that restricting caloric intake from liquid is a more beneficial way to loose weight than restricting calories from food. Even though these sodas are artificially sweetened, a tendency to drink them may lead to an overall craving for sweet things such as desserts, sweetened cereals and breads, and other junk foods. And when you realize that just one teaspoon of sugar carries 15 calories, caloric intake can rise quickly.

Second, remember that diet soda has absolutely no nutritional value. And if you fill up on diet sodas all day long when you’re thirsty—or simply out of habit—you won’t be thirsty for the healthier beverages you need. The need for water, fruit and vegetable juices will be ignored. But don’t be fooled into thinking that you only need to remove the harmful drinks like diet soda from your diet. They need to be replaced by healthy ones—especially water.

And third, although the FDA has approved aspartame, which is the artificial sweetener in diet soda, remember it is still a chemical. And many have concerns about it. When research rodents were given high amounts of the sweetener, it was linked to brain tumors and lymphoma. Although the FDA maintains that aspartame is safe, users have reported side effects such as dizziness, headaches, diarrhea, memory loss and mood changes.

Considering that diet sodas have unnatural additives, can still carry calories, have zero nutritional value, and contain aspartame that might be harmful, perhaps it’s time to change what we drink. When you’re thirsty, try the one beverage with no calories, no sugar, no aspartame or other additives. Try water. It might take a while to get used to not drinking something fizzy and favorful, but if you give it a fair chance, you’ll soon be hooked. And you’ll be surprised at how good you feel.

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By Nancy Canwell. Copyright © 2009 by
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