Just finished a marathon, a meal at lunch break, or simply thirsty and quenching for that can of fizz? Before you pop open that can of soft drink, be well aware of the health risks that it carries with.
1. High Calorific Content:
Most sodas and soft drinks, even fruit juices have a high calorific content. This means that it is easier to ingest a greater quantity of hidden calories without even knowing it. This can lead to obesity and a myriad of other additional problems, including, heart disease and diabetes. Not to mention all the short term effects such as reduced movement, shortness of breath and fertility issues.
2. Increased Risk of Type II Diabetes:
Your risk of developing type two diabetes sky rockets if you are a regular soft drink consumer. Diabetes occurs when you body stops producing enough insult to regulate your blood sugars, or when you body becomes immune to insulin. Risk of developing this condition increases if you are overweight, and if you have a high sugar diet. Usually only associated in the over 40’s, due to changes in our diet teenagers are now being diagnosed with type II diabetes. Eventual symptoms of diabetes include nerve and vascular damage (which is why amputations of the extremities/eyes often occur), hardening of the arteries, increased risk of heart attacks and stroke.
3. Liver Disease:
Most drinks are sweetened with corn syrup which contains fructose sugars. These are very quickly digested and promote the storage of fats throughout the body which causes fatty liver disease.
4. Tooth Decay:
There are several ways soft drinks can cause tooth decay. Firstly, the cocktail of different sugars they contain – like glucose, sucrose and fructose, feed bacteria in the mouth. The bacteria in turn excrete acid. This acid wears away the enamel of the tooth, leading to tooth decay. However the drinks themselves are also usually acidic – this can be due to the flavours and other constituents, or due to the dissolved carbon dioxide (carbonised water) which is included to make it fizzy.
5. Bone Loss:
Whilst no one is quite sure why soft drinks cause low bone density in drinkers, the correlation is strong. It could be because of a lack of Vitamins, D, B6, B12, Calcium and other micronutrients which consumers fail to take in or a displacement reaction between the phosphorus compounds present in the drinks, and the calcium in your bones. This can cause osteoporosis.
6. Soft drinks contain known carcinogens:
Many soft drinks contain a preservative called sodium benzoate, which when mixed with Vitamin C (ascorbic acid) creates benzene. Benzene is a carcinogenic substance that causes cancer and mutations. It also increases the degeneration of mitochondrial DNA. The level of benzene in soft drinks tend to be many times over the safety limit put on tap water.
7. Many soft drinks contain aspartame:
When soft drinks aren’t full of sugar they rely on artificial sweeteners such as aspartame to keep them tasting good. Over 75% of complains to the FDA are thought to be related to aspartame. Side effects can include, depression, insomnia, headaches, tinnitus, hearing and memory loss, and in the long term aspartame has been shown to trigger or worsen, diabetes, Parkinson’s disease, brain tumours, epilepsy and Alzheimer’s.
So before you pop open that next can of fizz, ask yourself whether quenching that thirst, or living a healthier life is more important.