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Beat the Cola Temptation

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A can of chilled soft drink is definitely a pick-me-up, especially in summer.

While you can take one every other day, recent scientific evidence suggests that “reaching for a few cans of soft drinks every day to quench your thirst should NOT be an option.”

The acidity of cola drinks… is about the same as vinegar. The sugar content masks the acidity, and most of us don’t realize that we’re drinking this odd mix of phosphoric acid, sugar, caffeine, coloring and flavoring.

I’m sure you already know that sodas are full of empty calories and really aren’t the best drinks to quench your thirst. However, I am listing a few pointers that will highlight the facts about soft drinks that will hopefully help beat cola temptation!

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Here is a list of 10 reasons why you should avoid overconsumption of soft drinks.

1) Carbonated soft drinks are a diuretic. Drinking a soft drink takes more water out of your system than it puts back into your body. The digestion process for the high sugar will remove a lot of water from your system. To replace the water lost from drinking a carbonated soft drink, you need to drink many glasses of water to compensate for your soft drink consumption.

2) An excess of sugar (and crash) in your body can lead to diabetes

High levels of sugar in the soft drink can cause your pancreas to produce too much insulin. A constant rise and fall in insulin and sugar in your system can lead to fluctuations in blood sugar levels and insulin resistance.

3) Heavy consumption of soft drinks can disrupt your body’s iron metabolism and reduce nerve impulse transmission.

4) Colas can interact adversely with antacid intake, potentially leading to constipation, calcium loss, high blood pressure, nausea, vomiting, headaches, and kidney damage.

5) Caffeine has been linked to reduced absorption of calcium.

Soft drinks have long been suspected of causing lower levels of calcium and higher levels of phosphate in the blood. When phosphate levels are high and calcium levels are low, calcium is pulled from the bones. The phosphate content of soft drinks is very high and they contain practically no calcium. In addition, caffeine programs the kidneys to produce excess urine, leading to dehydration. There’s enough evidence that cola and other carbonated beverages are linked to low bone mass — in both adults and children — that people should be concerned about how much of these beverages they’re drinking.

6) Carbonated soft drinks contain eight times the amount of benzene permitted in drinking water. The abundant chemical benzene has been linked to leukemia

7) Another benefit of avoiding sodas is that you avoid the caffeine found in many of them. Caffeine intake above safe limits has been associated with irritability, anxiety, nervousness, deep sleep deprivation, and vascular headaches.

8) Soft drinks are indeed anything but soft. Because colas are high in phosphorus and phosphoric acid, they tend to infiltrate body fluids and corrode the lining of the stomach. They can also upset the alkaline-acid balance of the kidneys and affect your liver functions. Research has clearly shown that acids with a low pH of around 2.5 are 10,000 times more acidic than the desired neutral pH of 7.0.

9) Soft drinks also contain refined sugar and artificial substances such as colorings, flavorings, sweeteners, all of which are said to contribute to the production of free radicals in the body.

10) Since soft drinks are naturally quite acidic with a pH of around 2.5, drinking too much of them can lead to problems related to your teeth and gums.

So the next time you decide to have that soft drink, be aware that not only could your teeth and weight be at risk, but your entire body system and overall health as well! Switch to green tea, lime water, fruit juices and buttermilk to quench your thirst and trust me, every single cell in your body will thank you for the switch!

Thanks to Dr. Panchali Moitra

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