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Many people have been drinking diet sodas for a number of years now its nothing new. It is known to be much better for you in the weight loss aspect, but overall is it good for a person to drink?

diet-coke-nutritional

Here you can see that it has zero grams of fat, zero carbs, and zero calories, so of course many people who enjoy drinking soda will go right for this because it has just about the same taste without the excessive amount of fat, carbs, and calories. It also says in all caps: “LOW SODIUM” which, is a great advertisement to get those who can’t have much sodium to drink this diet soda. Diet soda is often recommended to people with diseases such as diabetes, or weight problems because it will not negatively affect them with mass amounts of sugar. It also can be beneficial for our dental hygiene because large amounts of sugar can damage our teeth.

On the other side, diet soda can be horribly bad for you. The ingredients may not include real sugar, but there are artificial sweeteners that are much worst in the long run vs. real sugar. One of the main artificial sweeteners used is called Aspartame, which is commonly thought as the ingredient that “causes cancer”. As we learned in class about the topic of correlation vs. causation, this definitely is a topic people often wonder whether aspartame and cancer correlates or if it directly causes it. It has yet to be definitely proven that it causes cancer, but there are links that tie the two together. Here is an article I found that describes a little more about aspartame and some trials done with its influence of cancer. ┬áDiet soda may help us consume less calories by drinking it rather than regular soda, but the sweetness can trigger our brain to crave more sugary foods, allowing us to eat excessive calories that we missed from the diet soda.

Many of the artificial sweeteners have been proven to be sweeter than actual sugar, creating the diet soda to taste the same. The most common ones are: aspartame, acesulfame-K, saccharine, sucralose, neotame, and advantame. In this article, It lists these exact artificial sweeteners and how much sweeter they are compared to sugar itself. It discusses studies shown using these sweeteners and their effect on the brain. Specifically, one study done in California, research was done on drinking water with sugar vs. sucralose. The results show that sugar activated areas of the brain that sucralose did not. Based off this study it shows that artificial sweetener may taste extremely similar, but it does not give off the full effect of regular sugar and doesn’t energize the brain as much as sugar. It doesn’t trigger dopamine to be released like eating sugary foods does. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter and when it is released it affects our behavior, movement, attention, and overall energy levels. It is important that dopamine is released each day and by eating certain foods that can happen, but diet soda does not do the trick because the sugars are not real or natural in any way.

 

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