Another Nail in the Coffin for Diet Soda

All right, Dr. Peters, will you lay off the diet-soda-bashing melodrama?

No.  The answer is no.

You’ve read my articles before about how diet soda actually promotes weight gain rather than weight loss, and more seriously, raises the risk of stroke significantly.  Is that Diet Coke fix worth a brain attack that could lead to permanent neurologic deficit, or even death?

Now French researchers have published findings (1) that consumption of lots of diet soda more than doubles the risk of developing type 2 diabetes, compared to non-soda drinkers.  This is an even higher risk than regular soda drinkers!  As you know, type 2 diabetes is like aging on fast forward, accelerating the development of cardiovascular disease, nerve problems, kidney disease, eye problems, and other complications.  But wait — how much is “a lot” of diet soda?  More than about 600 ml per week.  Or for us Americans, about 20 fluid ounces.  Yes, just one 20 oz. bottle per week.  Know anyone who drinks more pop than that?

So let’s look at the arguments of the beverage industry:

  • “Diet soda is a good choice for those trying to lose weight, since it contains zero calories.”  FALSE
  • “Diet soda is a good choice for diabetics, since it contains no sugar.”  FALSE
Consider the alternatives:
  • Get a reusable water bottle, and make pure water your go-to drink.  Add a squirt of real lemon or lime juice for a little flavor, if you miss it.  No need to replace one highly processed food (diet soda) with another (“designer” waters).
  • Green tea:  go beyond the Lipton — there are many different varieties, with flavors that should appeal to everyone.  And how about a 20-30% lower risk of cardiovascular disease as a bonus?

One Comment

  1. Euodias Torgersen

    I campaign against diet soda to eliminate migraines and so many benefit from the advice. Lets keep passing the word!

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