imyeyes-banner-sqIn My EyesBy Edward B. Antonio

Softdrink for your thirst? Think again

Last time around, I wrote a column about these so called “softdrinks.”

Are they really soft?

People are super friendly to softdrinks, but is it vice versa?

There was a study which suggested that instead of buying a bottle of a costly toilet bowl cleaner, why not use your favorite softdrink? Pour the drink into the bowl, bowl seat and walls. Leave that for at least 30 minutes, then wash the bowl with clean water. The result? A brand new toilet bowl!

More and more studies reveal that soda drinks are one of unhealthiest drinks on earth yet people keep on consuming them. It’s good that the Department of Education has banned its sale in government schools.

Now, let’s take a second look at these studies:

Nutritionist and medical writer Jenny Hill answers this question: What happens when you drink a can of soda or your favorite cola drink?

Within 20 minutes, you get a sugar high. Your blood sugar spikes, resulting in a quick release of the hormone insulin. The liver tries to compensate by turning excessive sugar into fat and storing it around the body.

Within 40 minutes, all the caffeine is absorbed and your body responds to this substance: the pupils dilate, blood pressure rises, and the liver dumps even more sugar into the bloodstream.

Around 45 minutes after you have had your drink, the body increases dopamine (a chemical released by brain cells) production, which gives the person an imminent sensation of pleasure – this is similar to the way the body responds to heroin.

After 60 minutes, you develop a sugar crash. You can experience fatigue, change in mood, lethargy, mental fogginess.

A can of cola drink contains about 10 teaspoons of sugar, which amounts to 100% of your recommended daily intake.

The extreme sweetness is masked by phosphoric acid, which prevents the body from developing an immediate reaction to the glucose overload.

Here is how phosphoric acid can destroy your bones:

Cola drinks contain phosphoric which is also known as E338, orthophosphoric acid and phosphoric (V) acid. It is a mass-produced chemical, available cheaply and in large quantities. It can be used to remove rust, while the food-grade phosphoric acid is a very acidifying agent. It makes the drink more acid than vinegar or lemon juice. Some studies have linked phosphoric acid to osteoporosis, chronic kidney disease and kidney stones.

One such study was published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition in 2006. The main conclusion of the study was that drinking cola is associated with low bone mineral density (BMD) in women. Women who were drinking cola daily had 3.7% lower BMD at the femoral neck compared to those who didn’t consume the drink. The link was not found with other carbonated softdrinks.

How about depression, fellas?

According to the American Academy of Neurology (AAN), people who drank more than four cans or cups per day of soda were 30 percent more likely to develop depression than those who drank no soda.

And your kidneys?

The National Kidney Foundation advises strongly against the consumption of soda. Kidney function declined over two decades in women who drank several diet sodas a day, according to researchers from the prestigious Nurses’ Health Study. In fact, compared with women who did not drink diet soda, soda-drinking women had a 30% greater reduction in kidney function in 20 years. More than 3,000 women have participated in the study for 20 years or more; now the women’s median age is 67 years.

Can soda drinks damage your lungs and brain, too?

According to the journal Respirology, drinking soda might raise the risk for respiratory diseases like asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Excessive consumption of sugar is also one of the most dangerous brain damaging habits but did you know that even sugar free diet soda can potentially damage your brain?Aspartame, a common artificial sweetener in diet sodas can harm your brain. According to a study published in the journal Drug and Chemical Toxicology, long-term consumption of aspartame leads an imbalance in the antioxidant/pro-oxidant status in the brain.

Soda drinks damage also the teeth and heart. According to a study, excessive intake of softdrinks could cause complex dental consequences including dental erosion and tooth decay. Consumption of fizzy beverages harms the heart. According to a Harvard-based study, drinking soda increases the risks of coronary heart disease. Adverse changes in lipids, inflammatory factors and leptin were also noted. Those participants of the study who drank the most sugary drinks, had 20% higher chances of developing a heart attack.

So, why not shift to diet cola?

 Well, studies also show that drinking diet soda can triple risk of dementia & stroke and may cause cancer. You may think that drinking sugar-free diet soda is better for you than regular soda, which is full of sugar. After all, we all know about the dangers of consuming too much sugar.

However, a medical study published in the American Heart Association’s journal Stroke found that the artificial sweeteners used in diet drinks are a major cause for concern. The medical study found that drinking diet soda is linked to a greater risk of stroke and dementia.

So, next time you join a party full of softdrinks, think again fellas.

We don’t live twice.