If you’ve been drinking one or more sodas every day, that aluminum can in your hand is to blame for those extra digits on the scale. We’re not talking a couple pounds either. We’re talking long term weight gain. One can of cola adds more than 100 calories to your daily intake. That’s over 10 lbs of additional body fat every year.
Obesity, type-2 diabetes, and soda addiction have all risen together steadily and scarily over the past decades. Coincidence? Not a chance. Soda is sabotaging your body.
What’s so bad about a little bubbly liquid?
Lots and lots of calories and zero nutritional value. Sugary soft drinks account for almost 10% of the average American’s daily caloric intake. That’s a ton of empty calories that lack any of the nutrients, fiber, or minerals your body needs to function. Because soda’s missing what your body craves, no matter how much you drink you’ll still be left feeling hungry. So, on top of hundreds of empty calories, you pile on additional food that still counts against your ideal daily allotment. Remember, there is one absolute truth: if you take in more calories than you burn you will gain weight.
Your odds of becoming obese increase as much as 1.6 times for every 12 ounces of soda you drink over the course of the day. That’s because one small can of soda holds a whopping 140 calories of added sugar. Reality check: at most fast food restaurants, a 12 ounce serving of soda is considered the kiddie size.
Go directly to fat jail.
All these added sugars are simple sugars, meaning they are readily and easily absorbed. When you take in such a high volume so quickly your insulin spikes. Your body can’t handle the rapid influx, which leads to extra glucose being stored as fat. You don’t get any lasting energy from the liquid carbs; you get that familiar and inevitable crash. Instead of being ready to hit the gym to burn off any extra fat, you’re so exhausted you just hit the couch. Do not pass go. Do not collect $200.
I’ll just switch to diet soda!
Not so fast. Recent studies show that over time diet sodas still cause weight gain. If you drink 2 or more servings of diet soda a day you are 5 times more likely to increase dangerous visceral fat in your midsection. That extra fat puts you at greater risk for diabetes, heart disease, and other chronic illnesses.
Let’s say you only drink a single serving of diet soda a day. Diet soda is still high in sodium. The more sodium in your body, the more water you’ll retain. Which means if you’re trying to lose weight, diet soda can actually make it that much harder move the scale in the right direction. And let’s not forget the artificial sweeteners in diet soda – a BIG no-no!
Instead of sodas, why not reach for healthier and even more refreshing beverages?
If you won’t give up the carbonated bite of soda, mix two parts seltzer water with one part 100% fruit juice – like powerhouse pomegranate or cranberry. You’ll get your pleasant pop and fizz along with rich antioxidants and vitamins. Embrace homemade smoothies made with fresh fruit and almond milk or greek yogurt for added protein.
Maybe it’s time you jump on the green tea train. Even if you sweeten your tea, you’re more likely to check your sugar intake when you’re the one spooning in the sweetener. Or reach for that oldie but goodie, pure H2O.
One thing is for sure: cut out sodas and you’ll start to feel lighter than carbonated air.
My favorite analogy is this: Would you ever think to give your dog a soda? Or Wine? Coffee? Seems pretty silly doesn’t it, yet we as humans sometimes drink more of those beverages than anything else.
Water. We need it, and that is really ALL we need when it comes to beverages so try to drink as much as you can!