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View Full Version : Are diet colas like Coke and Pepsi really bad for you?


Doc
05-14-2009, 09:02 AM
The thread about adding a tax on all soda pops got me to wondering if diet Colas are bad for you. I presumed because they do not have all the sugar that regular cola has that they are okay, not healthy but not bad for you.

How about diet Sprite and 7up, any difference with them?

All of these have low calories and no sugar, but what do they do to your system?

Erik
05-14-2009, 09:57 AM
you mean aside from the fact that they trigger hunger pangs in folks - so they snack more?
or the higher concentrations of phosphoric acid which strip calcuim from your teeth and bones and etch your tooth enamel?
maybe the studies done in the late 80's & 90's that linked Aspartame (nutrasweet) metabolic byproducts like formaldehyde and high concentrations of aluinum (due to the low pH of the soda etching the insides of the can) to demyelinating diseases (symptoms similar to MS, Parkinson's, & Alzheimer's) and fibromyalgia?

all of which is worse in dark sodas like cola, rather than clear sodas like sprite - because clear sodas don't use as much phosphoric acid.

On the flip side - the sugar substitute alcohols like malitol, etc... are laxatives, so you should limit your intake of them for a more obvious reason. (not as bad as eating an entire bag of chips fried in Olestra in one sitting, but...)

Oh, yeah - and Aspartame was discovered by a guy who was burning I believe asphalt.

jpr62902
05-14-2009, 10:01 AM
Some studies show that, the artificial sweeteners in diet colas can actually make it difficult for your body to tell when it's satiated. Kind of ironic from a dieter's perspective.

I think saccharin was feared to be carcinogenic, but apparently the risk isn't that significant, since it's still on the market.

jpr62902
05-14-2009, 10:03 AM
Shucks. Erik beat me to it ....

pixie
05-14-2009, 10:44 AM
Some people claim that Artificial Sweeteners can cause an insulin response just the same as sugar does, hence the hunger. They also say that since insulin is the chemical that causes fat storage, that the diet sodas will hinder weight loss.

PBinWA
05-14-2009, 11:15 AM
I know that when I was on a serious diet cola drinking binge in my late 20's that I suddenly got a ton of cavities. Prior to that I had never had a cavity. Since I stopped drinking so many sodas I have not got another cavity.

Honestly, in moderate use (1 a day) then it is probably fine. There's a whole lot of wisdom in the saying: "All things in moderation"

Doc
05-14-2009, 11:25 AM
Good info all. Thanks. I normally get a 20oz one at work per day, and depending on whats for dinner will have one or two 12oz cans with dinner and after dinner. That is 44oz's on average 3 or 4 times a week. :eek: I do believe I will start working on changing my cola habit.

Has anyone else 'changed' their cola habit? What did you change to?
I like tea, but not near as well as cola.

Erik
05-14-2009, 11:56 AM
you're just not drinking the right tea - you can also try brewing it with spices or dried fruit to add flavor. (stick cinnamon is a good one to strt with)
seriously, a 1-2 can a day average (12 pack a week) isn't likely to cause any major health issues, but this is definitely a case where "less is better".

you might also look into Stevia (herbal extract - plant is zone 4 hardy, I think, if you want to grow your own) as a way to sweeten things without using sugar or other artificial sweeteners.

Another option is to switch over to honey or other natural non-refined sugars for your sweteners. (doesn't help with the soda habit, but does help you get away from white granulated sugar which has it's own list of detrimental effects)

Doc
05-14-2009, 12:03 PM
Another option is to switch over to honey or other natural non-refined sugars for your sweteners. (doesn't help with the soda habit, but does help you get away from white granulated sugar which has it's own list of detrimental effects)

Thanks for the suggestions Erik. :thumb:
If you don't mind ....while we are at it tell me what you know about the detrimental effects of granulated white sugar.

PBinWA
05-14-2009, 12:20 PM
Has anyone else 'changed' their cola habit? What did you change to?
I like tea, but not near as well as cola.

Black coffee. Unfortunately, not in moderation. :whistle:

I'm not so good at the moderation thing when it comes to food consumption.:doh:

Erik
05-14-2009, 12:31 PM
bleaching it is part of the refining process, so it's high on the industrial waste scale, and some of that is still in it when it hits the table, which adds to your chlorine uptake. (free radicals - or oxidants if you're into that)
the other big thing is that white sugar is a type of sugar that enters your blood stream instantly - as opposed to "natural sugars' like fructose which have to be broken down into glucose and so do not cause the sugar spike/insulin cycle becuase they enter your blood at a slower rate. (sort of like the difference between getting 1" of rain in 20 minutes versus a steady soaker that takes 8 hours to dump the same amount on your lawn) This sugar spike/insulin spike cycle is thought to be one of the major causes of type II diabetes as well as some forms of pancreatitis.
Because of the refining process and the way it's absorbed into your blood, there's also a theory that white sugar changes your body's pH which can leave you more succeptible to some illnesses and infections. (people used to pack food in sugar or honey to preserve it in places where the didn't have access to a lot of salt)
There's plenty of other information out there on the ills of refined white food (rice and flour, too - which is part of the push for whole wheat/brown rice over the past 30 years) that i don't have at my fingertips right now - some of which makes sense, some of which is akin to religion in that if you don't want to believe, their "proofs" won't convince you. :flowers: :whistling:

EastTexFrank
05-14-2009, 12:57 PM
My name is Frank and I'm a soda junkie.

I used to drink about 6 cans a day until I realized that accounted for about 800 calories so I switched to diet. When I've been working outside I still drink about the same amount but it's usually Fresca, Diet Dew or Fanta. I don't drink cola or Dr Pepper very often. I often drink green tea for a change. I also drink too much coffee and at the end of the working day, a beer or two. I also drink lots of water.

Working outside during the Texas summer means that you have to drink a lot and plain ol' water just doesn't work for me all the time. I still crave the sweet stuff.

Kei
05-14-2009, 01:25 PM
In the end everything is bad for you. It all depends on how much of it you consume. For example red meat can cause all kinds of health problems but if you don't eat it all the time you'll be ok.
Same goes for sodas that have real sugar or the diet ones. If that is all you drink on a regular basis then you will have health problems. If you have the occasional soda then I wouldn't worry much.

Doc
05-14-2009, 01:37 PM
In the end everything is bad for you. It all depends on how much of it you consume. For example red meat can cause all kinds of health problems but if you don't eat it all the time you'll be ok.
Same goes for sodas that have real sugar or the diet ones. If that is all you drink on a regular basis then you will have health problems. If you have the occasional soda then I wouldn't worry much.
Yep, you are so right Kei. My problem is that I'm was past the occasional soda. It is a daily thing. Today I ordered tea with lunch for the 1st time in a long time. Wasn't bad but that first drink sure shocked me. I forgot I had ordered it and expected my regular soda taste. :yum:

Kei
05-14-2009, 01:40 PM
Yep, you are so right Kei. My problem is that I'm was past the occasional soda. It is a daily thing. Today I ordered tea with lunch for the 1st time in a long time. Wasn't bad but that first drink sure shocked me. I forgot I had ordered it and expected my regular soda taste. :yum:
You wouldn't be trying to avoid that new soda tax coming up? :hammer:

muleman
05-14-2009, 02:06 PM
These days I drink ice water almost constantly. Might have 5 sodas a month and that is with meals when we eat out. Drank enough colas and beer to last a lifetime. Water is a lot easier on your body systems.

BamsBBQ
05-14-2009, 03:04 PM
i drink ALOT of pop/soda...i drink ALOT of coffee... then there are energy drinks that happen to pass by my lips as well..lol

but when i am out, i order water with a slice of lemon... at least it gives it some flavor..lol

i use to have a saying..."No i dont drink water, fish poop in that you know?"...lol

on a side note, our soft drinks in canada are still made the old way...with no high-fructose corn syrup

OhioTC18
05-14-2009, 07:28 PM
When my son was diagnosed with diabetes 15+ years ago we never had regular sugared drinks in the house after that. I got so used to diet Coke and Root Beer that the regular stuff made me sick at my stomach. Over the years, I've switched to water at meal time. Occasionally an artificially sweetened tea, but I still prefer ROOM TEMP water.

pirate_girl
05-14-2009, 08:55 PM
but I still prefer ROOM TEMP water.
What the heck Jerry? :)
Ya got an elimination problem there? :poke::toilet:

I drink a COKE once in a blue moon, but my preferred soda is RC.

Other than that it's iced tea, and I do drink way too much of it.

OhioTC18
05-15-2009, 07:56 PM
What the heck Jerry? :)
Ya got an elimination problem there? :poke::toilet:



Nope I just prefer it without ice :biggrin:

benspawpaw
05-19-2009, 02:58 AM
the dietecian when i was in the hospital said too many diet drinks are bad for you in many ways. most all of them are listed in this thread already but then too much of anything is not good, except fun.(i aint never had too much fun)(take that as you will), but i slacked off to 3 or 4 a week about a year ago and my daily headaches went away after about a week or two. not saying the diet coke caused them, but like they used to say on hee-haw. doc it hurts when i do this. the doc would say, well dummy, dont do that.

ncroamer65
05-19-2009, 12:05 PM
Some studies show that, the artificial sweeteners in diet colas can actually make it difficult for your body to tell when it's satiated. Kind of ironic from a dieter's perspective.

I think saccharin was feared to be carcinogenic, but apparently the risk isn't that significant, since it's still on the market.

When this first came out and they quoted the dose they're giving
the "rats" in the study, I checked the "Diet Rite" I was drinking &
figured it would take 600 a day to equal a single dose of the "rats".

Drank in "moderation" this should not cause a problem :clap: :clap: :clap:

Deadly Sushi
08-11-2009, 10:09 PM
It is NOT good. In fact the UK is going to ban the Phenol.... something or other because it is linked to things from arthritis to head aches.

DaveNay
08-12-2009, 12:06 AM
Iced tea... Yankee style (unsweetened)

And the nectar of the gods...COFFEE! (is a pot and a half per day too much? :confused:) Black and unsweetened...the stronger the better.

I drink less than a dozen cans of pop per month.

pirate_girl
08-12-2009, 12:11 AM
And the nectar of the gods...COFFEE! (is a pot and a half per day too much? :confused:) Black and unsweetened...the stronger the better.



No wonder your head's on fire..:biggrin: