Weight loss and optimal health are correlated to one’s diet. While many believe cutting calories is the way to go, there are other contributing factors. The oxymoron “diet soda” is a perfect example.
Although diet sodas have either zero or just a few calories, they can contain artificial sweeteners like aspartame and sucralose. The body can register these artificial sweeteners as if it’s real sugar going into you, resulting in obesity and type 2 diabetes.
Diet Soda Can Cause Weight Gain
Not only is diet soda a contraindication for weight loss, but it also has many negative effects on overall health. Some studies have shown those who drink diet soft drinks on a daily basis are at increased risk of stroke, heart attack, and vascular death.
Diet Soda Side Effects Include Aspartame
Most diet soda contains the sweetener aspartame, which breaks down to phenylalanine in the body. That interferes with intestinal alkaline phosphatase, a beneficial enzyme that helps prevent diabetes and metabolic syndrome.
Our intestine is covered with cells that secrete hormones. These cells react to the presence and composition of food by secreting peptides that work on the brain, signal satiety, and control glucose by influencing the secretion of insulin. Artificial sweeteners seem to not affect these hormones the way real food does. The sweet taste causes the brain to register a high-calorie intake. The lack of calories then creates cravings, usually leading to over eating.
Where to find Artificial Sweeteners
Today artificial sweeteners and other sugar substitutes are found in a variety of food and beverages. These sweeteners are marketed as “sugar-free” or “diet” and widely used in processed foods. They are also included in baked goods, soft drinks, powdered drink mixes, candy, puddings, canned foods, jams and jellies, dairy products, and many other foods and beverages.
The best alternatives to these artificial sweeteners, sucralose (Splenda), Aspartame (Equal), and Saccharin (sweet N’ Low), would be natural sweeteners.