We all know that soda (or pop for my fellow Clevelanders) is bad for us. The detrimental side effects that come with our daily fizz are detailed in article after article. It is filled with sugar that causes insulin spikes, weight gain and risk of diabetes. Diet sodas contain aspartame that basically destroys your brain. High consumption of soda is associated with increased blood pressure and heart disease. And the list goes on…same old, same old.
It was not until recently that I discovered the particularly damaging effects soda has on women. Multiple studies have been done to address the why of this phenomenon but, have all come up empty-handed. With that said the correlations of the health risk associated with women and soda are clear, I am not sure that we need to wait for the “why” to take action now. Ladies, reducing your intake of soda can lower your risk for:
- Premature aging. Researchers estimated that drinking 20 ounces of soda per day caused an accelerated appearance in age of just over 4 1/2 years according to findings published in the American Journal of Public Health.
- Drinking too much soda can lower potassium levels resulting in irregular heartbeat function.
- One of the main ingredients in soda, phosphoric acid, is thought to leach calcium out of bones potentially leading to osteoporosis. In addition, women who drink soda tend to drink less milk decreasing their consumption of bone-building calcium, to begin with.
- Women who consume soda on a regular basis have an elevated risk of gout possibly attributed to the associated sugar intake.
- Soda consumption by females has been attributed to lowered fertility.
Why are we still drinking this garbage? Suggestions have been made that women drink more soda and are therefore further at risk than men in attempts to stay trim by using it as a way to feel full or satisfy their sweet tooth. Although I do understand this notion and may have practiced it in my younger years, there is an alternative.
I will not be so naive to believe a regular soda drinker will be satisfied by a cold turkey switch to plain, flat water although that would be optimal. Instead, I would recommend a transition to sparkling water. Sparkling water will provide you with the necessary satisfying fizz without all of the crazy health risks. You can even add your own natural flavorings (suggestion here) to keep your taste buds happy.
Drinking sparkling or plain water instead of soda will absolutely change the life of a high soda consumer. I am certain that you will feel and look better from the inside out.
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