Drinking soft drinks is something many people do without thinking twice. Whether it's grabbing a can to accompany your lunch or dinner, or taking a sneaky trip to your office vending machine. Soft drinks are one of the worst things you can put into your body. I know, I know you hear this ALL the time - but do you actually know WHY? I will write down some of the reasons below and also tell you some awesome healthy alternatives! Trust me, you will never look at a can of Coke the same way.
- First things first. One single can of soft drink can contain 10 teaspoons of sugar. Yes, 10 TEASPOONS! Let’s just take a moment to think about eating 10 teaspoons of sugar in one go, it makes you feel queasy right? So why do we happily chug down the soft drink like it’s no big deal? That amount of sugar causes our blood sugar levels to skyrocket and then we crash and burn. The most obvious fact is that weight gain will undoubtedly happen if you are constantly drinking soft drinks, not to mention the serious possibility of developing diabetes or insulin resistance.
- Drinking soft drinks is basically consuming empty calories, this means you are adding calories into your body with absolutely ZERO nutritional value that you have to burn off in order not to gain weight. If you are following a healthy eating plan think about it like this, drinking a can of soft drink will roughly add about 160 calories into your day. That basically replaces a snack that will make you feel full and happy, for a can of soft drink that will make you irritable and hungrier. This is if you can stop at one a day though, many people will have a soft drink with each meal. If you are struggling to eat healthy just cutting the soft drinks will make the biggest difference in your diet.
- Drinking soft drinks regularly can lead to cavities, gum disease and plaque. I’m sure we all know that furry feeling we get in our mouths after drinking them, yeah that’s not a good thing!
- So by now you are probably thinking “Well I can get away with the empty calorie thing by drinking zero or diet soft drinks”. This is just as bad, if not worse than drinking regular soft drinks. There is a reason diet drinks still taste pretty similar to the non-diet ones and that is a sneaky ingredient called aspartame. Aspartame is a substitute for sugar which can actually be more harmful than the sugar itself, it is made up of the chemicals methanol, phenylalanine and aspartic acid. Some people may choose to disagree with the harmful side effects this may have on our bodies, but the fact it is an artificial sweetener that offers no nutritional benefit whatsoever should be evidence enough to not digest it when trying to live a healthy lifestyle.
The best thing to drink to keep your body happy and healthy is water, always. However, if you really find water boring and want to treat yourself to something carbonated, try drinking soda water. If this is still too plain you could add chopped fruits to the soda water or use something like a Sodastream to make your own carbonated beverages. The other alternative is making your own juices, invest in a quality juicer and you will not regret it. It is important to try to drink homemade juices when you can, as many store bought ones are filled with just as much sugar and additives as the soft drinks.Kayla xx