Think drinking diet soda is a helpful way to “save calories” so that you’ll put on less weight? Think again.
Despite the words on the front of the bottle that claim it’s a “diet” product, the research doesn’t add up when it comes to artificially sweetened beverages.
According to a 2011 study, from the University of Texas Health Center San Antonio, diet soft drinks can lead to a massive increase in waist size, a finding that echoes other studies including one from Harvard University linking diet soda to weight gain.
The Texas study observed 474 elderly people. A total of 9.5 years later it was found that diet soda drinkers had waist circumferences that were 70 percent greater than those who did not drink diet soda. Those who drank diet soda the most, at least two per day, had waist sizes that were 500 percent greater than those who didn’t drink diet soda at all.
Another study from the same health center found that diabetes-prone mice fed a diet including aspartame for just three months had higher blood glucose levels than those who were not.
According to noted naturopath Dr. Mark Hyman, artificial sugars are also thousands of times sweeter than regular sugar, trick our metabolism into thinking sugar is on the way leading to more insulin production (which we noted earlier and which is considered the “fat storage hormone” according to Hyman), and also make you hungrier so that you want to consume more food.
Considering that the many millions of diet soda drinkers also tend to think they’re “saving calories” by drinking diet soda, they will often feel as though they can get away with eating more, which then spirals into a spectacle of over-consumption and inevitable weight gain.
All of this is completely unavoidable if we can just get past our diet soda addiction and to see these products for what they are: dangerous chemicals in a can that actually harm our quest for weight loss and health.
If you or your friends and family still drink diet soda in any form, it’s time to figure out what the root of the addiction or attachment to these drinks is, and to eliminate the problem from the source. Try sparkling water sweetened with natural, preferably organic fruit juice to fill in the need for that “crisp” taste, or simply switch to ice cold water or even lemonade with stevia instead of sugar.
I personally have found that sparkling mineral water is the best substitute. Although it’s not ideal for health purposes compared with spring water, it’s still a far healthier option, and provides a quick “buzz” feeling similar to soda pop that keeps me satisfied when I relapse into old habits.
Try these healthier substitutes instead: your health and your waistline will thank you, both now and in the future.
This article first appeared on Nick’s health website AltHealthWORKS.com. To view it in its entirety and learn more, click on this link .