Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Not even in moderation: Soda

Soda!?  I'm sure about 99% of America drinks soda daily, whether in regular or diet form.  I believe that soda made the old fashioned way, while still terrible for you (hello 40 g of sugar!) is a lot more tolerable than the way soda is made today.  If you really want a soda, in moderation, you should go for an "all natural" variety - one without artificial sweeteners, colors, and flavors.  But even that, after reading the following, may not sound like such a good idea.

In the words of the website

According to the Nutrition Research Center, this is what happens to your body within one hour of drinking a can of soda:

-10 minutes: 10 teaspoons of sugar hit your system, which is 100 percent of your recommended daily intake. You'd normally vomit from such an intake, but the phosphoric acid cuts the flavor.

-20 minutes: Your blood sugar skyrockets. Your pancreas attempts to maximize insulin production in order to turn high levels of sugar into fat.

-40 minutes: As your body finishes absorbing the caffeine, your pupils dilate, your blood pressure rises, and your liver pumps more sugar into the bloodstream. Adenosine receptors in your brain are blocked preventing you from feeling how tired you may actually be.

-45 minutes: Your body increases dopamine production, causing you to feel pleasure and adding to the addictiveness of the beverage. This physical neuro response works the same way as it would if we were consuming heroin.

<60 minutes: The phosphoric acid binds calcium, magnesium and zinc in your lower intestine, which boosts your metabolism a bit further. High doses of sugar and artificial sweeteners compound this effect, increasing the urinary excretion of calcium. The caffeine’s diuretic properties come into play. (You have to GO!) Your body will eliminate the bonded calcium, magnesium and zinc that was otherwise heading to your bones. And you will also flush out the sodium, electrolytes and water. Your body has eliminated the water that was in the soda. And in the process it was infused with nutrients and minerals your body would have otherwise used to hydrate your system or build body cells, bones, teeth.

>60 minutes: The sugar crash begins. You may become irritable and/or sluggish. You start feeling like crap. Time to grab another? 

That description makes me want to cringe from all the times I drank soda.  Can you imagine the people that drink almost nothing but soda all day?  How really horrible they must feel and not even know it?  Or they know it and are attributing it to being tired, not getting enough sleep, allergies, stress, thinking they are getting sick, etc.  And to see children drinking this stuff?  Lord, help us all.  

Some people may think that Diet Soda has to be better because it doesn't have the sugar.  Here's another excerpt from the same site on Diet Soda:

A study from the Walter Reed Army Medical Center reported that healthy women who drank diet cola excrete more calcium and phosphorous than non-cola drinkers.  The findings were presented by Dr. Noelle Larson in a presentation at the annual meeting of the Endocrine Society and focused only on diet soda. She focused on diet cola mainly because of observations that young women tend to drink large amounts of diet cola.

In the study, 20 healthy women were randomized to drink 24 ounces of water or diet cola on two different days. Their urine was collected repeatedly up to three hours later. Those who drank diet cola excreted more calcium and phosphorous than the control group. The mean calcium excretion three hours after drinking cola was 6.85 milligrams higher than after drinking water. Mean phosphorous excretion was 41 milligrams higher in the cola group than the control group, according to the abstract.

Calcium and phosphorus are both important nutrients that work together to build strong bones and teeth. Previous studies have reported that cola drinkers (both diet and regular soda) have lower bone mineral density and increased fracture rate compared to non-cola drinkers.

“Our study suggests that diet cola ingestion may result in a negative calcium balance acutely in young, otherwise healthy women,” wrote Larson and her colleagues in the abstract. “This may help explain the clinically observed decrease in [bone mineral density] and increased fracture rate in women who consume these drinks regularly.”  

So there you have it.  Soda, even in moderation, just should not be consumed. 

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