“A Yale University Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity study found that a majority of Americans understand that soda is bad for them. But despite this, a Gallup poll reveals that 48% of surveyed Americans — nearly half! — drink soda on a daily basis. What’s more, among those who drank soda, the average daily intake was 2.6 glasses per day.” - A Huffington Post article 

As the Huffington Post article stated above, almost half of Americans drink soda. Many people know that it is bad for their health. But do people know exactly WHY soda is bad for them?

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Here is a list of how and why soda is bad for you:

Note: These are just SOME of the effects that soda has on your body. If you are curious about the full effects that soda has on your body, check out some of the articles I quoted in this post.

Chicken bone experiment

Have you ever watched the “chicken bone” experiment? Ever heard of it? The “chicken bone in soda” is a science experiment used to show children the negative effects of soda. The chicken bone is left in a bowl of soda for several days and you actually witness the changes to the chicken bone – it becomes weaker and weaker. That’s right, soda can make your bones weak and brittle. However, soda doesn’t directly weaken your bones when you drink it, but it can directly damage your teeth. Soda causes tooth decay and cavities. This video is the most visual way that soda can impact your health.

Weight gain

Soda is loaded with sugar and it is easy to drink in a short period of time. A 20-year study on 120,000 men and women found that people who increased their sugary drink consumption by one 12-ounce serving per day gained more weight over time—on average, an extra pound every 4 years—than people who did not change their intake. Weight gain and obesity can trigger a number of problems like cancer and early death.

Increased risk of diabetes

According to the infographic provided by Visual.ly, those who drink more soda have an 80% increased risk of developing Type 2 diabetes.

It’s not just regular soda that is bad for you, diet soda is too.

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Here is a list of the effects diet soda can have on your body…

Diet soda weight gain

Diet soda is different from regular soda because of the artificial sweeteners. According to a Health.com article, artificial sweeteners trigger insulin, which sends your body into fat storage mode and leads to weight gain. A University of Texas Health Science Center study found the more diet sodas a person drank, the greater their risk of becoming overweight. Downing just two or more cans a day increased waistlines by 500%. Why? Artificial sweeteners disrupt the body’s natural ability to regulate calorie intake based on the sweetness of foods. Basically… diet soda doesn’t help you lose weight. It does the opposite.

Diet soda increases risk of diabetes

Drinking one diet soda a day was associated with a 36% increased risk of metabolic syndrome and diabetes in a University of Minnesota study. Metabolic syndrome describes a cluster of conditions (including high blood pressure, elevated glucose levels, raised cholesterol, and large waist circumference) that put people at high risk for heart disease, stroke and diabetes. Diet soda is associated with a number of heart problems and it throws off your metabolism.

Kidney problems

Diet soda has been proven by scientific studies that it can cause kidney damage. Kidney decline wasn’t associated with regular soda, so scientists think it is because of the artificial sweeteners.

Cell damage (yes, the list just keeps going!)

Diet sodas contain something many regular sodas don’t: mold inhibitors. They go by the names sodium benzoate or potassium benzoate, and they’re in nearly all diet sodas. But many regular sodas, such as Coke and Pepsi, don’t contain this preservative. Eek, that means it causes damage to your DNA.

You get the idea: it doesn’t matter if you choose regular or diet soda. Both versions of soda are bad for you. For a quick summary of the effects soda can have on your health, Visual.ly has a very useful infographic. As you can see, soda causes a plethora of health issues: obesity, increased risk of diabetes, tooth decay, weaker bones, reproductive issues and more.

My advice: Kick the soda habit and drink more healthier beverages like water. Your body will thank you later.

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