Some people drink soda pop as if it is water, some even instead of water. Sure, the primary ingredient is water, but, with all the other “stuff” it contains it can have a…toxic…poisonous…lethal…venomous… seriously harmful effect on your entire body. Drinking soda pop is a sure-fire way to age faster. Here’s why:
Soda Pop (or carbonated soft drinks) has an alarming amount of sugar, calories and harmful additives in it that have absolutely no nutritional value. Studies have linked soda to osteoporosis, obesity, tooth decay and heart disease. Despite this, soda accounts for more than one-quarter of all drinks consumed in the United States….and we wonder why we can’t lose weight and why we have health problems. So very often our health problems do not BEGIN on their own. WE encourage illness and disease little-by-little every day by NOT preventing their cause. We know better, we try to fool ourselves, but our bodies’ cells can’t be fooled about what we put in our mouths. I hope the next time you look at a can of soda pop you take note of the ingredients and smarten up for the good of your own healthy lifespan and that of your children and grandchildren. …What you are about to read should turn you away from sodas altogether.
Here’s what’s in Soda Pop:
Phosphoric Acid:May interfere with the body’s ability to use calcium, which can lead to osteoporosis or softening of the teeth and bones. Phosphoric acid also neutralizes the hydrochloric acid in your stomach, which can interfere with digestion, making it difficult to utilize nutrients.
Sugar:Soft drink manufacturers are the largest single user of refined sugar in the United States. It is a proven fact that sugar increases insulin levels, which can lead to high blood pressure, high cholesterol, heart disease, diabetes, weight gain, premature aging and many more negative side effects. Most sodas include over 100 percent of the RDA of sugar.
Aspartame:This chemical is used as a sugar substitute in diet soda. There are over 92 different health side effects associated with aspartame consumption including brain tumors, birth defects, diabetes, emotional disorders and epilepsy/seizures. Further, when aspartame is stored for long periods of time or kept in warm areas it changes to methanol, an alcohol that converts to formaldehyde and formic acid, which are known carcinogens.
Caffeine:Caffeinated drinks can cause jitters, insomnia, high blood pressure, irregular heartbeat, elevated blood cholesterol levels, vitamin and mineral depletion, breast lumps, birth defects, and perhaps some forms of cancer.
Soda is one of the main reasons, nutritionally speaking, why many people suffer health problems. Aside from the negative effects of the soda itself, drinking a lot of soda is likely to leave you with little appetite for vegetables, protein and other food that your body needs.
How many sodas have you had today? How about your kids? The average American drinks an estimated 56 gallons of soft drinks each year, but before you grab that next can of soda, consider this: one can of soda has about 10 teaspoons of sugar, 150 calories, 30 to 55 mg of caffeine, and is loaded with artificial food colors and sulphites.
Teenagers and children, who many soft drinks are marketed toward, are among the largest consumers. In the past 10 years, soft drink consumption among children has almost doubled in the United States. Teenage boys now drink, on average, three or more cans of soda per day, and 10 percent drink seven or more cans a day. The average for teenage girls is more than two cans a day, and 10 percent drink more than five cans a day.
It also raises the question of how one determines a product’s caffeine content. Nutrition labels are not required to divulge that information. If a beverage contains caffeine, it must be included in the ingredient list, but there’s no way to tell how much a beverage has, and there’s little logic or predictability to the way caffeine is deployed throughout a product line.
Let’s take a look at some of the major components of a can of soda:
Okay, so most enlightened consumers already know that colas contain a fair amount of caffeine. It turns out to be 35 to 38 milligrams per 12-ounce can, or roughly 28 percent of the amount found in an 8-ounce cup of coffee. But few know that diet colas — usually chosen by those who are trying to dodge calories and/or sugar — often pack a lot more caffeine.
A 12-ounce can of Diet Coke, for example, has about 42 milligrams of caffeine — seven more than the same amount of Coke Classic. A can of Pepsi One has about 56 milligrams of caffeine — 18 milligrams more than both regular Pepsi and Diet Pepsi.
Even harder to figure out is the caffeine distribution in other flavors of soda pop. Many brands of root beer contain no caffeine. An exception is Barq’s, made by the Coca-Cola Co., which has 23 milligrams per 12-ounce can. Sprite, 7-Up and ginger ale are caffeine-free. But Mountain Dew, the curiously named Mello Yellow, Sun Drop Regular, Jolt and diet as well as regular Sunkist orange soda all pack caffeine.
Caffeine occurs naturally in kola nuts, an ingredient of cola soft drinks. But why is this drug, which is known to create physical dependence, added to other soft drinks?
The industry line is that small amounts are added for taste, not for the drug’s power to sustain demand for the products that contain it. Caffeine’s bitter taste, they say, enhances other flavors. “It has been a part of almost every cola — and pepper-type beverage — since they were first formulated more than 100 years ago,” according to the National Soft Drink Association.
But recent blind taste tests conducted by Roland Griffiths at Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions in Baltimore found that only 8 percent of regular soft drink consumers could identify the difference between regular and caffeine-free soft drinks.
The study included only subjects who reported that they drank soft drinks mainly for their caffeine content. In other words, more than 90 percent of the self-diagnosed caffeine cravers in this small sample could not detect the presence of caffeine.
That’s why the great popularity of caffeinated soft drinks is driven not so much by subtle taste effects as by the mood-altering and physical dependence of caffeine that drives the daily self-administration.
And the unknown could be especially troublesome for the developing brains of children and adolescents. Logic dictates that when you are dependent on a drug, you are really upsetting the normal balances of neurochemistry in the brain. The fact that kids have withdrawal signs and symptoms when the caffeine is stopped is a good indication that something has been profoundly disturbed in the brain.
Exactly where that leads is anybody’s guess — which is to say there is little good research on the effects of caffeine on kids’ developing brains.
Animal studies demonstrate that phosphorus, a common ingredient in soda, can deplete bones of calcium.
And two recent human studies suggest that girls who drink more soda are more prone to broken bones. The industry denies that soda plays a role in bone weakening.
Animal studies — mostly involving rats — point to clear and consistent bone loss with the use of cola beverages. But as scientists like to point out, humans and rats are not exactly the same.
Even so, there’s been concern among the research community, public health officials and government agencies over the high phosphorus content in the US diet. Phosphorus — which occurs naturally in some foods and is used as an additive in many others — appears to weaken bones by promoting the loss of calcium. With less calcium available, the bones become more porous and prone to fracture.
The soft drink industry argues that the phosphoric acid in soda pop contributes only about 2 percent of the phosphorus in the typical US diet, with a 12-ounce can of soda pop averaging about 30 milligrams.
There’s growing concern that even a few cans of soda today can be damaging when they are consumed during the peak bone-building years of childhood and adolescence. A 1996 study published in the Journal of Nutrition by the FDA’s Office of Special Nutritionals noted that a pattern of high phosphorus/low calcium consumption, common in the American diet, is not conducive to optimizing peak bone mass in young women.
A 1994 Harvard study of bone fractures in teenage athletes found a strong association between cola beverage consumption and bone fractures in 14-year-old girls. The girls who drank cola were about five times more likely to suffer bone fractures than girls who didn’t consume soda pop.
Besides, to many researchers, the combination of rising obesity and bone weakening has the potential to synergistically undermine future health. Adolescents and kids don’t think long-term. But what happens when these soft-drinking people become young or middle-aged adults and they have osteoporosis, sedentary living and obesity?
By that time, switching to water, milk or fruit juice may be too little, too late.
Research presented at an American Diabetes Association gathering this summer found that women who went from drinking less than one, non-diet soda a day to one or more daily sodas were nearly twice as likely to develop type 2 diabetes over a four-year period as women who drank less than one soft during a day. (The women who drank more soda also gained more weight over the same period.)
A study published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism suggested that fructose, a sweetener found naturally in fruit juice and typically used in concentrated amounts in soft drinks, may induce a hormonal response in the body that promotes weight gain.
Soft Drinks, especially light-colored drinks, and canned iced tea appear to “aggressively” erode teeth enamel in laboratory tests—and it didn’t matter whether they were diet drinks or regular ones, according to a study published in General Dentistry