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Diet Soft Drinks
Oct 11, 2010

I drink a lot of water each day; however, I also enjoy drinking soft drinks and I know I drink too many. I drink about 4, 12oz soft drinks per day. A few years ago I had switched to diet soft drinks to reduce my caloric intake and for dental health. I lost about 10 pounds from that switch. However, I began craving sweets and actually gained back the 10 plus about 10 more. So, I switched back to regular soft drinks.

I've been thinking I need to reduce the amount I drink or switch back to diet. I've been reading how diet drinks are actually bad for our bodies and may be even worse with HIV. Plus, I read conflicting info about the dental aspect. Many articles will blame the sugar in regular soft drinks for dental issues. Then, I'll read where the carbonation in diet drinks isn't much better for our teeth. I've read even orange juice is bad for our teeth.

I'm wondering what you think of diet drinks? Is the artificial sweetener bad for our bodies? Is there more of an issue when you have HIV and drink artificial sweeteners?

Response from Mr. Vergel

Diet drinks decrease your caloric intake in the short term, but people crave more sugar with them. Like sugar containing sodas, they also can be damaging on tooth health. They can be addictive is some people who crave sweet taste and caffeine.

A intriguing study linked diet soda consumption to heart disease: Diet sodas and the heart

The most commonly distributed version of Diet Coke (and majority of beverages using artificial sweeteners) relies on aspartame, which has been labeled as a toxic substance by internet rumors and media coverage. You can read one of those sources here :aspartame health concerns . However, aspartame is one of the most intensively scrutinized food additives and has been deemed safe by the American Medical Association, the World Health Organization and over 100 food regulatory agencies over the world. But I am not convinced.

Coca-Cola has now released Diet Coke sweetened with sucralose (also known as Splenda), although it is not as common.

The sodium benzoate was found to break down mitochondrial DNA in living yeast cells. Research published in 2007 for the British government's Food Standards Agency suggests that sodium benzoate is linked to hyperactive behavior and decreased intelligence in children. In January 2008 sodium benzoate was removed from production lines for Diet Coke sold in Britain, however it remains in other Coke products and other production locations.

I would buy a BPA free bottle and fill it up with green tea, lemon and a little honey or Stevia as a sweetener instead. If you do not have time to make your own, a brand called Honest Tea has been found to have the highest amounts of antioxidants in the bottled tea market.

Water really is the best way to hydrate the body. But most people want flavor and caffeine!


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