Many people rely on diet drinks because they are supposedly healthier and more figure-friendly. But are these drinks with sweeteners really a better alternative to sugary soft drinks?
We see advertisements for diet drinks almost everywhere, usually with beautiful fit women! We have Diet Coke, Pepsi Max, Sprite Zero or Fanta Zero- and so many more! The advertising suggests sweet enjoyment without remorse since most diet drinks have no calories. They are sweetened with sugar substitutes, sweeteners or stevia instead of sugar. So it's not surprising that many people reach for a diet beverage instead of a high-calorie alternative. However, the long-term consequences of regular consumption might take a toll on your health. We'll take a look at some popular diet drinks and healthier alternatives.
Fanta, Sprite, Cola - the soft drinks so loved by many are full of sugar. With just one glass of cola, for example, you can consume 7 cubes of sugar! That's why Coca-Cola has brought two sugar-free alternatives onto the market: Coke Zero and Coke light. Both drinks are sweetened with sweeteners- so what's the difference?
The difference between Coke Zero and Coke light is in the taste. The full taste of Coca-Cola Zero is even more similar to the classic Coca-Cola, while Coca-Cola light still has its own light taste. The taste nuances result from the different composition of the sweeteners and aromas.
Coke without sugar sounds good - no calories with full enjoyment. But unfortunately, it doesn't sound as good as it is. A study of French women showed that both artificially sweetened drinks and sugar-sweetened drinks were associated with an increased risk of type 2 diabetes. The study also found that a high intake of sugar-sweetened drinks was associated with weight gain, possibly due to lower saturation and increased blood sugar and insulin levels, leading to insulin resistance. Sweetener drinks can also lead to weight gain by stimulating appetite and triggering a sweet preference in some people.
When people with obesity or prediabetes start drinking artificially sweetened drinks to control their blood sugar, the situation can get worse. An analysis of 17 cohort studies showing an 18% higher incidence of type 2 diabetes with normal soda and 25% higher incidence with diet drinks.
The human brain responds to sweetness with signals to eat more. So by providing a sweet taste without calories, diet drinks can make us long for more sweet foods and drinks. That signal can add up to excess calories.
Those who really want to lose weight should rely on natural sugar-free drinks or low-sugar drinks. These can be different tea sorts like black tea, fruit tea, or Kombucha. Coconut water or rice milk is another low-calorie sweet drink substitute. You can also enjoy fruit juice spritzers with sparkling water, or homemade lemonade. However, these should not consist of more than 30% fruit juice.
Even though diet drinks don't have calories, for the sake of your health and fitness, opt for water or beverages with natural ingredients. You'll avoid the extra chemicals, and feel better overall. What are your favorite healthy drinks? You can get great tips from family and friends on FamilyApp!