If you never gave a thought to what you ate and instead
watched only what you drank, you could probably cut
450 calories a day out of your life. That's what a study
from the University of North Carolina found.
When confronted with the growing tide of calories from
sweetened beverages, the first response is, Why
not just drink diet soda? Well, for a few reasons:
Just because diet soda is low in calories doesn't
mean it can't lead to weight gain.
It may have only 5 or fewer calories per serving, but
emerging research suggests that consuming sugary-tasting
beverages--even if they're artificially sweetened--may
lead to a high preference for sweetness overall. That
means sweeter (and more caloric) cereal, bread, dessert--everything.
Guzzling these drinks all day long forces out the
healthy beverages you need.
Diet soda is 100 percent nutrition-free, and again,
it's just as important to actively drink the good stuff
as it is to avoid that bad stuff. So one diet soda a
day is fine, but if you're downing five or six cans,
that means you're limiting your intake of healthful
beverages, particularly water and tea.
There remain some concerns over aspartame, the low-calorie
chemical used to give diet sodas their flavor.
Aspartame is 180 times sweeter than sugar, and some
animal research has linked consumption of high amounts
of the sweetener to brain tumors and lymphoma in rodents.
The FDA (who is no longer a credible agency to protect
our health) maintains that the sweetener is safe, but
reported side effects include dizziness, headaches,
diarrhea, memory loss, and mood changes. Bottom line:
Diet soda does you no good, and it might just be doing
The best way to hydrate is by drinking filtered water
and low-calorie, high-nutrient fluids.