Most of us have heard that we should be drinking more water, as our bodies are largely comprised of it. For some, drinking water comes naturally. Others may need more convincing, particularly if drinking water has not been a habit in their lives, but drinking soda has been. Let’s explore the pros and cons of drinking soda vs. drinking water.
Why or why not water?
First, why do we need water? HealthiNation put together a great video explaining the benefits of drinking water.
All water is not created equal
A Certified Clinical Nutritionist explains how water is not the same across the board, especially in the case of bottled water.
Ok, so our bodies need water. Does soda count? Absolutely not. Dr. Mercola writes that “63% of Americans Actively Avoid Soda,” and gives examples of what soda does to our bodies in his article. “As people drank more and more soda, rates of obesity and diabetes soared, and while the soda industry still denies to this day any connection, research suggests otherwise.” Dr. Mercola goes on to explain what happen in our bodies.
What Happens When You Drink Soda?
“Soda is on my list of the absolute worst foods and drinks you can consume. Once ingested, your pancreas rapidly begins to create insulin in response to the sugar. A 20-ounce bottle of cola contains the equivalent of 16 teaspoons of sugar in the form of high fructose corn syrup (HFCS). In addition to contributing to insulin resistance, the rise in blood sugar is quite rapid. Here’s a play-by-play of what happens in your body upon drinking a can of soda:
- Within 20 minutes, your blood sugar spikes, and your liver responds to the resulting insulin burst by turning massive amounts of sugar into fat.
- Within 40 minutes, caffeine absorption is complete; your pupils dilate, your blood pressure rises, and your liver dumpsmore sugar into your bloodstream.
- Around 45 minutes, your body increases dopamine production, which stimulates the pleasure centers of your brain – a physically identical response to that of heroin, by the way.
- After 60 minutes, you’ll start to have a blood sugar crash, and you may be tempted to reach for another sweet snack or beverage.
As I’ve discussed on numerous occasions, chronically elevated insulin levels (which you would definitely have if you regularly drink soda) and the subsequent insulin resistance is a foundational factor of most chronic disease, from diabetes to cancer. Today, while many Americans are cutting back on sugary drinks, soda remains a dietary mainstay for many. Along with energy drinks and sports drinks, soda is among the top 10 sources of calories in the US diet (number four on the list, to be exact), and, in 2012, Gallup found that 48 percent of Americans said they drink at least one glass of soda a day, with proven detrimental impacts to their health.”
What about diet soda? Unfortunately, these beverages which many people think actually increases their chances of losing weight may do just the opposite. Dr. Mercola notes, “Research has repeatedly shown that artificially sweetened no- or low-calorie drinks and other “diet” foods actually tend to stimulate your appetite, increase cravings for carbs, and stimulate fat storage and weight gain.”
Just say “no” to diet drinks!
Because of the studies on the risk of aspartame more people are saying no to diet drinks. The video below explains diet soda’s effects on our health and weight.
Just say “yes” to good water!
The current trend is that Americans are drinking more water and less soda today, which is a good thing. However it is important for people to understand that the water source DOES matter. The chart below shows this growing trend in water, but also illustrates another growing problem…sports drinks. More on that to come.
Your body and long term health will thank you!