We already knew the artificial sweeteners in diet soda could increase the risk of being unhealthy for your unborn child. That’s why we’re always so obsessed with finding healthy drinking recipes to replace soda! It’s no surprise, then, to learn that a recent study in the Journal of the American Heart Association stroke confirms that diet lemonade is bad for you.
Diet lemonade is so unhealthy that researchers from the University of Boston found people who drink just one diet soda a day were three times more likely to suffer a stroke or develop signs of dementia. The study was conducted over a 10-year period and followed 2,888 adults over the age of 45 and 1,484 adults over the age of 60. While the evidence is available, the team has yet to officially determine the cause. As a result, they have said more research needs to be done, similar to the conclusion of the 2014 study, which linked heart disease in women to diet lemonade.
Of course, the negative health effects of diet soda aren’t always so grim. In fact, diet lemonade can cause all kinds of everyday problems that are disruptive at best and harmful at worst. We spoke to Brooke Alpert, nutrition expert and author of The Sugar Detox, to get her to understand exactly what makes diet soda so awful and what you can do to break your habit. Bonus: Alpert shares two ways to make drinking water much more fun, promise.
- Fewer calories are not equally healthier. “Health is so much more than calories-in fact, the whole concept ” calories in, calories out “is pretty antiquated ,” Alpert points out. She reminds us that diet soda is loaded with artificial sweeteners and chemicals that have been shown to be harmful to health. Worse, she says that “studies have shown that people who drink diet lemonade overeat, and our bodies still respond to this artificial sugar like normal sugars, so they actually still cause weight gain. “
- Artificial sugar is really bad for you. “I can’t say it clearly enough-artificial sweeteners are terrible for you. ” Alpert has no inhibitions when it comes to how “these pretty colored packets ” can harm you health. From dementia to heart disease, skin problems and bloating, artificial sweeteners mingle with you in myriad ways, with no discernible benefit to your waist or energy levels.
- You just have to stop RN. Bad news, diet soda addicts. Alpert says the only real way to kick the habit is to give it up cold turkey. To soften the tingling blow, she recommends “to load on unsweetened iced tea and flavored sparkling water to grin and endure it for a few days. My clients found out they got over the worst after day three. “
- Water is where it is. Honestly, there is no replacement for H2O. “Every cell in your body depends on a reasonable water intake to make your body work as well as possible. Dehydration is linked to everything from fatigue, false hunger, weight gain, bad skin and stomach problems , “says Alpert. Of course, these terrible effects sound eerily similar to those that come with diet drinking soda-still convinced?
Two ways to stay hydrated
1.There’s an app for that. Apps remind us to meditate, pay bills and book flights-so why not use one to remember to drink more water? Alpert says she’s “currently obsessed with WaterMinder. ” The free app allows you to set hydration targets, send daily reminders, track your water intake and even give you badges when you reach your goals.
2.Spice it up. Literally! Add cayenne pepper and lemon juice to your water for an extra kick. Alpert is all about this La Croix life RN and says the lime and grapefruit flavors are her current favorites. She also suggests adding fruit, cucumber or mint to a cute water bottle so the hydration game is more fun.