Diet soda is promoted as a healthy version of regular soda but the truth is there are several health risks that you need to be aware of. It is completely true that diet sodas have zero calories and can give you the caffeine fix you need. However, health risks like the ones mentioned below should be taken into account when you decide to buy or not.
Headaches Can Appear Because Of Diet Soda Artificial Sweeteners
Aspartame is usually the artificial sweetener of choice in diet sodas. This is actually sweeter than sugar and a lower quantity is needed. The new Diet Coke flavors that appeared in 2018 were sweetened with the use of “Ace-K”. This is a controversial artificial sweetener and it is 200 times sweeter than regular sugar.
Several studies linked sweeteners present in diet soda to the appearance of headaches. It is also much more likely that you shun healthy food options as you end up favoring food that is artificially flavored.
Breakouts Can Appear
Diet soda is not sugary or greasy. Even so, it still can cause the appearance of breakouts. When you consume diet soda, your skin can dry out. This means it becomes much more prone to dark circles and acne.
When you have dry skin, the best thing you can do is stay away from diet soda. Tea or water is just a lot better.
Depression And Diet Soda
The National Institutes Of Health conducted a study in 2013 and its results were not great. It identified a correlation between depression and diet soda consumption. The results showed that soda drinkers were actually 30 percent more likely to end up affected by depression. With diet soda, an extra 22 percent of risk was noticed.
Lower Bone Density
Women who drink diet soda, unfortunately, have lower bone mineral density when compared to women that abstain. This was identified in 2006 and is still not known by most people.
When you have a lower bone mineral density, there are much higher risks of developing osteoporosis, which is a disease that will cause your bones to become brittle and weak.
Gut Health Can Be Negatively Affected By Diet Soda
We always need to think about our gut health because this dictates how healthy our digestive tract is. When you have a healthy digestive tract, the body is much more capable of digesting food.
Unfortunately, diet soda can disrupt gut health. Basically, the gut has a balance of bad and good bacteria. Based on studies, artificial sweeteners inside diet soda can alter the bacteria’s function and type inside the microbiome of your gut.
Increased Diabetes And Metabolic Syndrome Risks
Many drink diet soda because they want to avoid the high amounts of sugar present in regular soda. The problem is that artificial sweetener decreases some enzymes in your gut’s activity. This leads to the appearance of metabolic syndrome, which includes several conditions that would cause heart disease, weight fluctuations, stroke, and in rare circumstances, death.
Statistics show us that diet soda will increase metabolic syndrome risk by over 30%. Also, diet soda was linked to a higher risk of developing Type 2 diabetes.
You Get More Intoxicated When You Mix Alcohol With Diet Soda
There are so many cocktails that use a combination of alcohol and soda. When you care about how many calories you consume, you might be tempted to use diet soda in those cocktails. This might be a mistake.
When you mix diet soda with spirit, you are much more likely to become intoxicated. Higher blood alcohol concentration will appear than when you use other drinks. What you might not know is that the sugar present in regular soda actually slows down alcohol absorption. Artificial sweeteners do not have such an effect. As a result, you will simply get drunk faster.
Your Taste Buds Will Be Affected
When you drink a lot of diet soda on a regular basis, your sense of taste will be negatively affected. For instance, when you first start to drink diet soda, you figure out the difference in taste when compared to regular soda. After some time, this difference will not be noticed. This is why big diet soda brands are capable of promoting their drinks as having the same taste as sugar-filled drinks. In reality, the taste is much different. But after consuming diet soda often, you will no longer feel the difference.
Increased Hypertension Risks
When you drink diet soda, there is a much higher possibility to be faced with high blood pressure. This is especially the case with adolescents. Those who drink diet soda actually have a higher blood pressure than those that drink regular soda.
This is one of the health risks that should be seriously taken into account when you decide whether or not to drink diet soda. It was shown that there is a biological addictive response that appears when you drink diet soda. Inside your brain’s reward center you have 2 neurotransmitters called glutamate and dopamine. These are released in a response to aspartame and caffeine present inside diet soda.
Basically, your brain will end up convinced that you crave diet soda. This creates a reaction that is similar to many other chemical addictions and will lead to you wanting to drink more diet soda. If you ever wondered why your friend now only drinks diet soda and nothing else, it might be due to this.
You Do Not Lose More Weight When You Drink Diet Soda
Last but not least, the fact that diet soda has zero calories does not actually mean it will help you to lose more weight. We know this ever since 2015 when it was shown that drinking diet soda actually leads to more abdominal fat when compared to not drinking it. One of the reasons why this happens is that your taste buds are affected. You might end up eating more and craving more other sweets and foods. Diet soda simply does not help you deal with the stricter regime associated with weight loss. This is especially the case when you are older or you are particularly overweight.