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6/25/13 3:41 P

In my college chemistry class years ago we did an experiment where we separated the chemicals in pop, Pepsi I believe but I can't remember. One of the chemicals separated was phosphoric acid. It spilled and burned a whole in my jeans and my skin under it. That and the fact that kidney stones and problems run in my family have made me stay away from pop since then for the most part. I still crave it every once in a while and will give in at times but for the most part I found subs for a sweetness need in drinks.

I like MiO (actually the generic at my local Hy-Vee or Aldis) and it has artificial sweetener. I also like Cascade Ice sometimes and there is another one Ice that's good and cheap as well and have artificial sweetener I believe. Too much of anything is bad but sometimes you have a craving and it is better to give in sometimes in some way whether it's a similar taste but healthy or a little of whatever you crave. I don't like artificial sweeteners and will stay away from them whenever possible when buying things but there are those things like Mio that I just don't feel it's enough to hurt me.

Pop is just like the evil drink to me, even diet but maybe my bad incident with it jaded me! I also have a sensitivity to caffeine and kidney stones run in my family which also steers me from pop (didn't used to, I was naughty).

I heard a very very fit women at work once saying she switched to diet soda because it was the same thing as drinking water. I just looked at her and said no it's nothing like water and her reply was "read the label, it has no calories, sodium..." etc, etc. Um the ingredients lady, do you see that crap in plain water? Can you pronounce them? But I hate arguing with others on what works or in their fitness and nutrition beliefs and I hate seeing others do it too. I like her a lot, she has great advice and is just fun to talk to and be around period so I didn't want to turn it into a debate. And she's in phenominal shape and has been for years so I can't say it SHOWS on her body so I just let it go.

It's probably not the healthiest thing to drink a lot of diet soda each day or even drink it on a regular basis but that's up to you to decide.

Posts: 450
6/25/13 2:52 P

My consumption of diet soda is pretty much limited to once in a blue moon--I'm more of a water and iced tea person. However, after finding out who funds much of the studies finding serious problems with artificial sweeteners, (cough, sugar industry, cough) I'm not inclined to give much credence to those studies. Now, nobody should chug a gallon of diet soda each and every day, but a glass of diet soda now and then is not really going to be a problem.

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6/25/13 2:46 P

"I ended up in the hospital several times before my doctors figured out that aspartame is what was causing my brain to swell. I am deathly allergic to the stuff. It is NOT a good or safe product."

Not for you, but an allergy is not the same as something being bad, or not good for you. Peanuts are about as healthy (and natural) a food as it comes, but some people are so allergic that just touching someone who has touched peanuts or breathing the air around where peanuts have been opened can send them into anaphylactic shock.

It's not good for you, but an isolated case like yours doesn't stand as evidence that the product is bad for everyone.

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6/25/13 2:37 P

Even when I completely binge on diet soda while dieting (which is not a good thing, btw) and even when I lost over 40 pounds the first time, it was never a factor that hindered my weight loss. Ultimately, water is your best choice, but diet soda is, to me, better than relying on fruit juice or regular soda.

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6/25/13 2:20 P

I ended up in the hospital several times before my doctors figured out that aspartame is what was causing my brain to swell. I am deathly allergic to the stuff. It is NOT a good or safe product.

The occasional can of pop (with or without sugar) as a treat isn't going to kill anybody, but consuming liters of the stuff a day can leach the calcium from your bones, set you up for diabetes (even if you are drinking sugar-free soda), cause organ damage and mess with your body's satiety mechanisms.

Drink water, or something natural that has been around for 1000s of years, like tea. I have a French press that holds 4 cups. If I fill that with herbal or green tea twice a day I have taken care of my basic fluid needs without poisoning myself. It's also cheaper and more environmentally friendly than drinking canned sodas.

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6/25/13 1:53 P

Just as with everything else, believe what you want to believe about artificial sweeteners.

Eggs are bad for you. Eggs are good for you.
Meat is bad for you. Meat is good for you.
Skim milk helps you lose weight. Skim milk doesn't help you lose weight.
Diet soda will cause cancer. Diet soda doesn't cause cancer.

No matter what you want to believe, there is a study out there that will back you up. I think most things are probably safe in moderation. That being said, I don't drink soda anymore, but if I did I'd sooner drink a full sugar soda than a diet soda. That stuff'll kill ya! ;)

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6/25/13 1:22 P

There is absolutely no proof that man-made artificial sweeteners are bad for you.

There is absolutely no reason to believe that, just because something is man-made means that it is bad for you and that natural is healthy or better for you.

There are a lot of man-made things that are extremely beneficial and which have saved countless lives. There are a lot of completely natural things that are deadly.

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6/25/13 9:52 A

I do agree that "sugar free" foods can help avoid cravings sometimes. I keep a box of sugar free Popsicles in the freezer for when I'm really craving something sweet, and eating fruit just won't do it for me.

That being said, I don't consume artificial sweeteners every day. I believe that it's best to eat them in moderation, and I consider 2-3 times per week to be moderation. Depending on where you are in your journey, moderation can mean different things to different people. To some people, moderation can mean 2-3 times per day. Whatever it is, it is important to remember to consume real foods 80% of the time, and save the treats for 20%.

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6/25/13 7:37 A

If it is made in a laboratory by someone in a white coat it's probably best if you avoid eating it.

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6/25/13 7:17 A


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6/25/13 12:36 A

The ONLY documented health effect from diet soda is damage to the tooth enamel. Cola drinks, whether regular or diet, are definitely bad for your teeth. Fruit-flavored drinks don't have the same effect.

As for personal experience, I have had periods when I drank very large amounts of diet sodas, periods when I used it moderately, and periods (like now) when I drink none for 6 months or more at a time. As far as I can tell, it makes NO difference. I don't have more or fewer cravings, my skin is no better or worse, there's no difference in frequency of migraines-- nothing. In fact, it might be just a tiny bit easier for me to control my weight when I drink it, but it's hard to know because I tend to drink it when I'm working in an office setting and give it up when I'm working freelance at home, so my access to food is different.

It is bad for your teeth, and it's most definitely a total waste of money. If someone wants to give it up, I would absolutely encourage that, and I have tips on how to do it. But if you *don't* want to give it up, don't feel like you have to. There are many other habits that are a lot more important to your health; focus on the big things first.

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6/24/13 11:29 P

I enjoy a diet soda now and again; I love Coke Zero Vanilla!

What's NOT good for me is the overdose of caffeine I was taking in each day with the soda I was drinking. Now, I don't keep it at home anymore, and only get it when I'm out on the town or out to lunch. Which is once or twice a week.

Diet soda is fine in moderation; a can a day, or even a little more, isn't going to hurt you at all. But if you're getting little water in favor of the chemical additives in diet soda all the time, then you're not drinking in moderation.

If you like the flavor, enjoy it guilt-free. We all have our vices. Just remember that natural foods are always better, and water is king when it comes to fluid. Now I drink mostly water, and diet soda's a treat.

Sometimes, I even have a *regular* soda. (Shh! Don't tell anyone!)

Posts: 434
6/24/13 9:01 P

I still drink diet soda nearly everyday. I don't agree it does AS much harm as many studies boast, but I do think it can do some harm over time. I still drink it regardless. I'm not sure if I will ever quit, but I may. Right now, it is helping me tremendously with cravings. I know many say it will cause cravings, but not for me. It is a great aid for me at this time and it keeps me on track. I drink Crystal Light too. I drink plain water as well. I drink plenty of fluids :)

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6/24/13 5:40 P

glad it works for you.
have no idea how you do it, and I'm not willing to try

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6/24/13 2:43 P


Perhaps I wasn't clear in my post; I have that problem sometimes!

Yes, we did change many things about my mother's diet, but the first thing we did was to remove artificial sweeteners from her diet. We've had to change things verrrry slowly because Ma is so stubborn and set in her ways. We removed the artificial sweeteners first, then after a month began to make other changes (for example, she doesn't need 4 tablespoons of butter and 6 of sour cream on a baked potato! Some of her eating habits were atrocious, but at the same time she loves many types of veggies and has always been a big salad eater). We did not change several things at once and then blame artificial sweeteners for everything.

So yes, I know that the other changes in her diet have definitely improved both her physical and mental health, but we saw such a big change when we first removed the artificial sweeteners that I thought I'd mention it.

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6/24/13 2:20 P

Why don't you just drink water instead of diet soda? Keeping yourself hydrated with water is the best thing to do. Most of us don't get enough water anyway. If you are craving something sweet, eat an orange or an apple.

If I was just trying to lose weight, I would drink a ton of diet soda. But I am not just on a quest to lose weight. I am on a quest to eat clean, which means I only eat what nature intended for me to eat, to the best of my ability.

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6/24/13 1:48 P

I think that it's much safer to drink diet soda than to drink regular soda. There is absolutely no evidence that artificial sweeteners, when consumed in normal amounts, cause anyone any harm. On the other hand, drinking a bunch of sugar (regular soda) will either leave you nutrient-deficient (if you replace real foods with regular soda so you aren't consuming too many calories) or overweight/obese if you just add those calories to your regular diet. Regular soda is filled with extra, empty, calories. Obesity is a known cause of many, many health problems.

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6/24/13 1:41 P

Suddenkorento1, that is great about your mother improving.

But, don't you see that your post exactly shows what is wrong with much of the data on diet soda? You changed several things at once, and then accuse one of them of causing the original problem. Could it be that your mother improved because you cut out the added sugar? Of the things you listed removing from her diet, sugar is the only one that has been clearly linked to the conditions your mother was experiencing. This is exactly how nutrition science seems to often work.....look at a bunch of correlations and pick out the correlation that fits the researcher's bias and then report it! And, if that result should happen to fit the bias of the agencies funding the research, all the better! The evidence against diet soda is a mixture of animal studies (usually meaningless), selective reporting, biased research where funding is dependent on the result (on all sides), patient food diaries (really biased), observational studies (pretty much meaningless in terms of suggesting cause and effect) and results that are just made up to fit nutritional hypotheses.

I was in a tourist-trap gift shop yesterday where they had every possible form of sugar for sale in liquid and solid forms (Vermont does love its maple syrup!). I asked where the diet soda was and the response was that they don't carry that dangerous stuff! A store filled with shelf after shelf of diabetes waiting to happen and they don't want to sell dangerous stuff! If drinking diet soda keeps you from drinking regular soda, then diet soda is a good thing.

Posts: 56
6/24/13 1:26 P

I drink a glass of diet grapefruit soda with my lunch every day. It's my treat. Yes, I have heard diet soda is bad for you...but so many other things are too. Isn't it all about moderation?

Edited by: KPMP1992 at: 6/24/2013 (13:27)

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6/24/13 1:24 P

I just can't imagine wanting to drink diet soda so much as to ignore all of the information out there about the health hazards of artificial sweeteners. Even if some of these studies have conflicting information, why take the risk?

All I know for sure is what I've experienced: My mother was a diet soda addict for many years. As she began to experience age-related health issues (incontinence, weight gain, memory loss), the first thing my sisters and I did (with recommendations from a GP doctor) was to radically change her diet (over time of course; we didn't do it all at once because Ma would never have stood for it). The first thing we did was to remove both refined sugar (including agave nectar which is so overprocessed that it is up to 90% fructose), artificial sweeteners, and caffeine (present in some diet sodas). Within a week there was an improvement in her incontinence problem, within two weeks there was improvement in her memory, and within a month she had begun to lose significant weight (this was before we'd made any other major modifications in her diet.)

My advice is to read as much information as you can about aspartic acid and phenylalanine (ingredients in NutraSweet and Equal), and the studies done about sucralose (Splenda) - there's an interesting one done by Duke University Medical Center that was published in the Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health - and then decide for yourself whether or not the risks are worth it to you.

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6/24/13 12:51 P

ah, thanks. I corrected it!

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6/24/13 12:14 P

"Drinking empty calories from diet soda both causes you to be deficient in other nutrients and causes hunger and overeating at the same time!"

I think you meant soda, not diet soda here, right?

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6/24/13 12:09 P

Here is my take on it. The best thing is probably to avoid all soda. There is a small correlation to poor dental health in people who otherwise don't take good care of their teeth or have regular dental cleanings.

But, if you are going to drink soda, consider this. There is a mountain of evidence that sugar is bad for you in pretty much every form. It causes massive added calories, it causes vascular inflammation that leads to cardiovascular disease, it causes insulin spikes that lead to diabetes and obesity. Drinking empty calories from sugar soda both causes you to be deficient in other nutrients and causes hunger and overeating at the same time! Meanwhile, diet soda does not have added empty calories. Diet soda does not cause inflammation or insulin spikes. Diet soda may cause hunger, but that data is still pretty weak and is mostly hidden in biased observational studies that have trouble connecting correlation and causation.

Let's see.....choosing between something clearly linked to and the leading causes of most of our modern health concerns or something with vague and ill-studied links to a bunch of slightly negative things.

Edited by: FROGMAN2013 at: 6/24/2013 (12:50)

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6/24/13 11:43 A

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6/24/13 10:46 A

If I tried to drink 4L of diet soda a day, the caffeine alone would send me through the roof. 0_0

I just don't like soda because the residue it leaves in my mouth makes my teeth feel icky. It's also entirely too sweet for me most of the time.

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6/24/13 10:43 A

I think it gets a bad rap. I have read that the claims about aspartame's dangers are all nonsense. Even the studies that warn about the risks of artificial sweeteners seem to use the words "might cause" and "may cause" too much.
I drink a lot of diet soda(as well as a lot of water), and it has helped me rather than hindered me.
The first time I lost a significant amount of weight(which I gained back over the course of years) I probably drank 4 liters of diet soda a day. I am still alive,I have all my teeth,and my kidneys haven't shut down.
Just curious for opinions.

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