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Effects Of Carbonated Drinks On Your Health

A soft drink is a drink that typically contains carbonated water, a sweetener, and a natural or artificial flavoring. The sweetener may be sugar, high-fructose corn syrup, fruit juice, sugar substitutes, or some combination of these. Carbonated beverages (soft drinks) are considered empty calories as they provide no nutrients but only calories from sugar.

Occasional consumption of these types of beverages may not cause any negative effects; however drinking them on a regular basis is not healthy. Cutting back on the number of soft drinks you consume or eliminating them from your diet altogether is the best way to prevent associated health problems.

Health problems associated with carbonated beverages:

Obesity

Soft drinks contain high amounts of sugar which adds calories to the daily diet. Regular consumption of soft drinks has been linked to obesity in both adults and children. Soft drinks as well as energy or sports drinks, sweetened teas, fruit juices and other high-calorie beverages, can lead to increased body mass index as well. Obesity and a high body mass index are risk factors for many chronic health problems such as heart disease, diabetes and some forms of cancer.. However, a better solution is to replace the soda, with calorie-free water.

Diabetes

According to an article published in 2005 by “American Academy of Family Physicians,” consuming soft drinks on a regular basis may also contribute to a higher risk of developing diabetes. The sweeteners and caramel coloring added to soft drinks, may decrease insulin sensitivity. When the body becomes less sensitive to insulin, blood glucose levels can rise and diabetes can occur. Unlike water or low-fat milk, soda does not leave the body feeling full. This means that drinking soda adds calories to the daily diet, but does not curb hunger, both of which can lead to ingesting too many calories. This, in turn, raises the risk of diabetes.

Heart Disease

Since drinking soda adds sugar and calories to the diet, it may also raise the risk of developing metabolic syndrome, which raises the risk of a heart attack or stroke. Metabolic syndrome is diagnosed when waist size is greater than or equal to 35 inches for women or 40 inches for men, when fasting blood glucose level is100 mg/dL or higher, when triglyceride levels are 150 mg/dL or higher and when blood pressure is greater than or equal to 135/85 mmHg. Having levels of beneficial cholesterol, called high density lipoproteins or HDL, that are below 40mg/dL for men or 50 mg/dL for women, is another diagnosing factor.

Tooth Decay

Ingesting sugar can contribute to tooth decay because acid is produced when bacteria enters the mouth and mixes with sugar. When the acid attacks the teeth for 20 minutes or more and causes plaque buildup on the teeth and gums, it leads to tooth decay. While it is not necessary to cut out consumption of naturally occurring sugars from healthy foods such as dairy products, fruits and vegetables, it is important to limit intake of processed sugary foods, such as soda, that do not provide any nutritional value.

Your menstrual cycle

Teenage girls who drink more than 1.5 serves of soft drink every day start their menses earlier than those who drink two or fewer a week, a study by Harvard Medical School shows. The girls who consumed daily sugary beverages started to menstruate about three months earlier than those who didn’t touch the sweet stuff. “Sugary drinks mess around with insulin levels in the body which, in turn, results in higher levels of sex hormones,” Jamieson says. “The increased sex hormones are associated with periods starting earlier.”

 

Metabolism

People who regularly drink one or two cans of soft drink a day have a 26 per cent greater risk of developing type 2 diabetes than people who rarely consume them, a study in the journal Diabetes Care reveals. And the diet versions of soft drinks aren’t much better for you – artificially sweetened drinks might alter your metabolism, research from Purdue University in the US shows. “When you [consume] sweeteners your body expects sugar but when that doesn’t come, your body signals that it needs more sugar, leading to cravings for carbohydrates,” Jamieson says. “This leads to weight gain and insulin resistance.”

Bones

Women who consume three or more cola-based drinks a day have almost 4 per cent lower bone density than those who drink non-cola based drinks, thereby increasing their risk of osteoporosis, according to Tufts University in the US. “This is quite significant when you’re talking about the density of the skeleton,” Tufts senior scientist and lead study author Katherine Tucker said. The phosphoric acid in cola can leech calcium from bones, while “caffeine is known to be associated with the risk of lower bone mineral density”, Tucker added.

Conclusion

With all the above points we can draw conclusion that soft drinks have negative effects on the health and hence should be avoided. Occasionally having a glass is accepted but as a daily routine it shall turn down health conditions. Instead of consuming empty calories it will be better to consume calories which shall provide nutrients.

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