We all know about tooth decay from the sugar and the elevated risk of diabetes, asthma, and heart disease associated with obesity. But there are plenty of other reasons not to drink soda.
Weird fat accumulations
According to a recently published Danish study, a liter of soda a day can dramatically increase the amount of fat surrounding the liver and skeletal muscles. Soda doesn’t simply make you fat—it makes you weirdly fat.
Fat in the usual place- even from diet soda
Of course all the sugar in soda will cause weight gain, but did you know that even diet soda settles in your midsection? Researchers from the University of Texas reported something they call the diet soda paradox. They monitored subjects for 10 years and found that those who drank diet soda had a 70% percent increase in waist circumference compared with those who didn’t drink any soda. Those who drank more than two diet sodas per day saw their waists expand by 500%.
Wouldn’t you rather have a crusty baguette and a nicely ripened Camembert?
One soda a day—less than the average daily consumption in this country—adds up to around 90,000 calories a year. That’s a lot of empty calories. Think of all the wonderful splurges you have to forgo to make room for that in your diet.
Old before your time
The resin lining of soda cans contains a hormones that ages your body prematurely and brings on early puberty in children. The phosphates shrink muscle and leach calcium from your bones giving you old-lady osteoporosis, and a new study links the sugars to high blood pressure. And rats given the compounds found in cola drinks died five weeks early; you don’t even want to think about what that means in human years.
Poison for all ages
High-fructose corn syrup derived from genetically-modified corn; brominated vegetable oil with an alternative use as a flame retardant— these soda additives are banned in more than 100 countries, but Americans happily drink them up. The substances have been linked to memory loss, nerve disorders, autism, infertility, and a jumble of cancers.
Glass, aluminum, plastic; take your pick
Glass is heaviest to ship; we export our planet-warming carbon dioxide addiction along with Coca Cola. Aluminum is an environmental disaster before the soda cans are even pressed. And then there’s the ubiquitous plastic bottles. The Great Pacific Garbage Patch is a floating mass of plastic debris that covers an area larger than most European nations. More than 200 species of fish and marine wildlife ingest the toxic trash, including some that end up at supermarket fish counters.
You really don’t want your neighbor drinking diet soda
Artificial sweeteners and other soda additives pass through both our bodies and waste water treatment plants without breaking down. A recent test of major municipal water supplies serving 28 million people found sucralose in 8 out of 12 of them. Yes, that’s someone else’s post-digestion Splenda in your drinking water.