How does drinking soda affect your health? A condition affected by high amounts of sugar in the blood is diabetes. These levels of high blood sugar are a result of the body’s inability to either produce or to use a hormone called insulin. The role of insulin is to move the sugar from the blood and into the cells of the body where it is used to make energy. Diabetes is also medically known as hyperglycemia. Many drinks have a lot of sugar in them and should be avoided as they cause spikes in blood sugar.
Three Types Of Diabetes
There are 3 major types of diabetes. Type 1 is where the body does not produce insulin and the immune system attacks the cells in the pancreas that produces insulin. Some factors that can increase this risk of type 1 diabetes is exposure to major vital illnesses at an early age, family history of type 1 diabetes and not getting enough vitamin D. Diabetes 2 is the most common and the body is unable to use insulin fully or make enough of it to keep up with sugar intake. Some links to this type of diabetes is obesity, inactivity, genes, age, high blood pressure or family history of type 2 diabetes.
The third type is gestational diabetes. A woman during pregnancy may be affected with gestational diabetes if the body cannot make enough insulin to carry the sugar to cells to be used or if there is insulin resistance present.
There Is A Link Between Diabetes And Sugary Drinks
There was a study posted in the BMJ that found a link between the risk of type 2 diabetes and drinking sugary drinks. There was another study that found people who drank 1-2 sugar-sweetened drinks every day, had a 26% greater risk of developing type 2 diabetes than those who did not. Other considerations in drinking sugar-sweetened sodas are that bacteria makes up plaque on teeth, the risk of cavities, enamel decay and gum disease because of the acidity, and the average can of soda provides about 150 calories and actually has very little nutritional value.
Diet Drinks Are NOT Healthier!
Just because diet soda might be a sugar-free alternative to regular, it does not mean it makes it healthier to consume. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition posted a study that followed 66,118 women for 14 years, keeping track of the drinks they consumed. Both sugar-sweetened beverages and artificially sweetened beverages were linked to a higher risk of type 2 diabetes at the end of the study. Other studies show the strong associations between diet soda and factors that contribute to diabetes that include weight gain and metabolic syndrome. This is a group of risk factors that occur together and do increase the risk of diabetes, heart disease and stroke. These factors include low levels of “good” cholesterol, high blood sugar level, belly fat, high levels of fats in the blood and high blood pressure.
Body weight and obesity is an important factor in controlling or avoiding type 2 diabetes. In a study the participants who drank diet soda every day showed more than quadruple the waist gain than those who did not drink it, showing a link between diet soda consumption and belly fat.
Artificial sweeteners do not directly raise blood sugar but they may still promote health risks.
There are other alternatives you might try instead of artificial sweeteners. Stevia leaves will give you the sweetness that you crave in soda. Whether regular or diet, soda is a dietary waste as they have little nutrients and a long list of side effects. Reach for that iced tea or flavored water that can provide the same refreshing benefit and protect your health! You can flavor your water by using berries, fruits, stevia, or honey. Drink up for health!