The Not-So-Sweet Truth About Soda

Soda accounts for more than 1/4 of all other drinks consumed in the U.S. Even though soft drinks may “taste good” they are not good for our bodies. Soda can cause, and put us more at risk for numerous health issues.

  • Hypernatremia – causes myelin sheaths (needed for the nervous system to function properly) to lose integrity. This could lead to neurological diseases such as Multiple Sclerosis.
  • Obesity – one soda per day can increase childhood obesity by 60%.
  • Caffeine dependence – caffeine drinkers may experience headaches, a rise in blood pressure, irritability, & stomach problems. (Some diet sodas contain 2x the amount of caffeine as regulate sodas.)
  • Tooth decay (periodontal disease) – the acids in soft drinks start dissolving tooth enamel within 20 minutes.
  • Osteoporosis (weakened bones) – because of the amount of phosphorous found in soft drinks, ingesting it decreases calcium absorption in our bodies.
  • Cancer – Soft drink companies use PET (polyethylene terephthalate) for bottling. Even though there may be trace amounts that we ingest, it is shown to cause cancer. Brain tumors have also been found in people who regularly ingest soda, possibly linked to the aspartame sweetener (found mostly in diet sodas). 1 liter of the sweetener can produce 56mg of methanol, a poison. If multiple soft drinks are ingested up to 250mg of methanol can be produced which is 32 times the EPA limit. Thus causing illness or death by methanol poisoning.

As of April 2010, the average American drinks 20 oz. of soda per day, making it the #1 source of calories in our diets or 7% of the average person’s calorie intake.

2 or more sodas per day = 1lb of weight gain per week = 52lbs of weight gain per year.

According to the National Soft Drink Association, Americans consume 1/2 gallon per person per day & 160 gallons per person per year. Soda is sold nationwide in 60% of all middle & high schools.

These are some scary statistics. Soda industry is obviously a large contributor to some of today’s leading chronic diseases. Soda does not affect everyone in the same way. If you choose to drink soda, do so in moderation.

Quick Tip: Try a healthier alternative. Add your favorite fruit juice to ginger ale or try an IZZE drink (contains fruit juice and carbonation).

Here are a few great sources for more information on how soda affects our health:

The National Sugar Rush: A Look At America’s Soda Consumption
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