Tuesday Tip: Diet Drinks 🥤
Are diet drinks bad? This is something I hear a lot and there seems to be a lot of concern out there over drinking zero or low calorie soft drinks. So I thought I’d address them today.
Proponents of the “diet drinks are bad” message often claim that the sweetener in them, aspartame, causes cancer. In fact there is no scientific evidence that aspartame causes cancer (or any disease). One study, on rats, found a possible link to blood cancers, but the largest study on humans found no link at all.
Others claim that diet drinks cause obesity. Obesity is caused by consuming excess calories, but diet drinks contain no calories so they can’t possibly cause obesity. They can’t work against the laws of thermodynamics!
Then there’s the people that say it must be bad because you can clean a coin/ silver etc with Diet coke…erm.. well what it does to your body is not the same as what it does to a coin. You can clean a coin with lemon juice/vinegar etc yet people consume those without question. Some argue that it negatively affects gut health but as the gut doesn’t have much involvement (there is nothing to be absorbed) this isn’t the case. Studies have only shown an impact with extreme consumption (we’re talking over 8 litres per day every day).
Finally the most recent claim is that the diet drinks “trick” your brain into thinking you’ve had sugar and therefore causes an insulin response (which then causes you to eat more sugar). This simply isn’t true – insulin isn’t released unless sugar is present, no calories, no sugar – no insulin response.
Some people are sensitive to aspartame (just as some people are sensitive to a range of foods) and obviously if it doesn’t agree with you then clearly don’t have these drinks. But zero calorie drinks can be a really helpful way to replace a calorie dense soft drink with something of similar taste but no calories, so can really help aid fat loss. In addition (as per last week) they contribute to the volume of things being consumed and help to keep you fuller longer.
So consuming diet drinks in moderation (a few cans a day or so) is perfectly ok!
Happy Tuesday 🤗