Will Cutting Out Diet Soda Help Lose Weight

Determine Your Soda Cues

Can Diet Soda Help You Lose Weight?

While old habits can be hard to break, it is possible. Charles Duhigg, author of “The Power of Habit,” explains that undesirable behavioral patterns become habitual when there is a trigger-routine-reward cycle. The “trigger” signals a routine or behavior, which is followed by some kind of reward. Duhigg suggests that in order to break a habit, the cue, routine, and reward must be identified.

Because the habit is usually more obvious than the trigger or reward, it can be harder to pinpoint. But once you determine the reason why you reach for that can of soda and the reward associated with itwhether it’s pleasure from a sugar rush or a jolt from the caffeineyou can start to implement small daily changes to eventually break free from the cycle.

I’m Not Going To Cut Diet Coke Out Completely But I Will Cut Down

On February 1, I had my first Diet Coke in a month and it was, well, underwhelming. Yes, I enjoyed it, but it didn’t feel like coming home or anything.

Honestly, I didn’t notice any drastic enough benefits to make me want to cut Diet Coke out of my life completely .

I was hoping my afternoon snack cravings might magically disappear when I stopped drinking diet soda, but I’m not convinced they did. My cravings changed day to day, but that happens normally.

My energy levels didn’t change, nor did my focus or body. It was all rather anti-climactic.

I don’t need Diet Coke to get me through an afternoon. I just quite enjoy it.

That said, I am going to try and limit my diet soda consumption to one or two a week. I know they’re not good for me, so I hope I can gradually wean myself off all soft drinks and be one of those beacons of health who only drink water. Maybe.

At the end of the day , I believe in moderation and having a little bit of everything you fancy as part of a balanced diet. That’s the key though: a little bit. Not seven cans a week.

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You’ll Reduce Sugar Cravings

Cutting the calories from sugar-spiked soda is a no-brainer: At 150 calories a can, those can add up to serious poundage. But diet soda is also associated with weight gainit’s just more passive-aggressive about it. “Artificial sweeteners affect our sense of satiety,” says Isabel Smith, MS, RD, CDN, of Isabel Smith Nutrition.

“Our bodies have evolutionarily developed to expect a large amount of calories when we take in something exceedingly sweet, and those artificial sweeteners are from 400 times to 8,000 times sweeter than sugar, according to the FDA. It causes a couple of things to happen: The muscles in your stomach relax so you can take in food, and hormones are released. With artificial sweeteners, your body says, ‘Wait a minute, you told me you were going to give me all this high-calorie food.’ It can actually send some people searching for more food, out of lack of satisfaction.”

Because artificial, non-nutritive sweeteners have been linked to increased cravings , when you give them up, you may start to notice that your body doesn’t crave as much sugar, or “sweetness” as it did before.

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Do Diet Drinks Help With Weight Loss It’s Unclear

This article was first published in The Montreal Gazette.

One of the ironies of life is that whenever you go to a medical conference, the food service invariably includes soft drinks. These are an especially egregious example of junk food. Soft drinks are loaded with sugar and increase your risk of gaining weight and developing diabetes.

The obvious solution is to cut out sugar. Water is the oldest sugar-free beverage, but since people want fizz and flavour, many choose diet sodas that contain artificial sweeteners or, as they are formally known, non-sugar sweeteners.

The question, though, is whether swapping out a regular soda, that contains sugar, for a diet soda, that contains a non-sugar sweetener, will actually lead to weight loss and prevent disease. As with most things in nutrition research, the data is equivocal and contradictory. While some analyses have found a benefit to using non-sugar sweeteners, others have not.

While there may be some merit to all of these theories, the only question that really matters is whether using non-sugar sweeteners can help people lose weight and prevent diabetes. A recent meta-analysis in the British Medical Journal did its best to summarize the evidence. The authors reviewed 56 studies and overall came to the conclusion that the quality of the evidence was not great. The studies were on average small and had short follow-ups, which limited their ability to draw any firm conclusions.

Is Drinking Diet Soda Bad For Weight Loss

Why cutting soda out of your life will help you lose 15 pounds in one ...

If youre starting your weight loss journey and wondering where diet soda fits into the picture, I want you to know Im proud of you.

Youre starting to ask questions and youre looking for answers. This is a great first step.

If youre trying to lose weight and currently drinking regular soda, the switch to diet would be a good move.

Youre gonna consume fewer calories that way, critical for weight loss.

This is why one of our top recommendations to our coaching clients is to cut back on sugary drinks.

However, if you currently drink diet soda and are trying to lose weight, there might be some better targets to shoot for:

These are far more important than an occasional Diet Coke here and there.

If you find yourself firing on all cylinders , then maybe consider replacing diet soda with tea, coffee, or carbonated water. There are enough unanswered questions on consuming diet soda to warrant the switch.

The most important thing you can do now? Commit to a change:

  • One less regular soda a day
  • One less Diet Coke a day
  • A daily walk first thing in the morning

Pick something you can track. Something with a clear yes or no that you can reflect on at the end of the day.

This will help you start your weight loss journey.

Want some help getting going? A little nudge out the door?

Okay, but only because youve been nice this whole time:

Try your free trial right here:

Now, your turn!

-Steve

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Improvements In Bad Cholesterol

The diet soda drinkers also showed significantly greater improvements in serum levels of total cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein , also known as bad cholesterol, said the researchers. In addition, the diet soda subjects had a significant reduction in serum triglycerides. Both study groups saw reductions in waist circumference and blood pressure.

Calories In Other Sugar Sweetened Beverages

Unfortunately, you’re not off the hook if you skip soda but still continue to consume other sugary beverages. There are some soda alternatives that provide just as many calories and just as much added sugar as a sweetened soda.

Sports drinks, for example, seem healthy on the surface. But many of them are full of calories. In fact, consuming a sports drink after exercise can undo the calorie deficit that you worked hard to create. In some cases, however, exercisers do benefit from some ingredients in sports drinks such as electrolytes.

Endurance athletes may need more sodium and potassium. Instead of purchasing sports drinks, you can make your own fluid replacement drink by adding 2 tablespoons of lemon juice and a small pinch of salt to a cup of water.

Juice is another high-sugar, high-calorie drink that may lead to weight gain and other health concerns. Juice provides calories that come from natural sugars found in fruit, but fruit juice doesn’t provide as many health benefits as eating whole fruit. In some cases, a glass of juice containing added sugar provides just as many calories as soda.

Juices with lower nutritional value include apple juice, white grape juice, and pear juice. Juices with the highest nutritional value include orange juice, purple grape juice, cranberry juice, tomato juice, and vegetable juice. Lower sugar juices include tomato juice, vegetable juice, and some cranberry juices .

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Can You Be Addicted To Diet Soda

Anecdotally, it does appear that drinking diet soda can be habit forming for some people.

CNN explored the issue and found numerous people who consumed more than a six-pack daily, easy.

Addiction is a word that gets thrown around too much these days, so Ill stop short of making a medical classification on these folks. Plus, I searched the scientific literature and couldnt find any studies on diet soda addiction.

However, if you stockpile Diet Coke like itll be currency in the post-zombie world, youre not alone.

This addiction makes sense considering the beverage was designed to hijack your brains reward system.

The Coca-Cola Company hires folks to find the perfect combination of:

  • Carbonation. The bubbles actually burn your tongue a little, which provides a pleasurable experience. Kind of like a good hot sauce.
  • Sweeteners. Sure, it isnt sugar, but your brain likes them just the same.
  • Caffeine. The jolt from caffeine will provide you a boost and raise your dopamine levels. The brain likes this.
  • Flavor. After drinking Diet Coke for some time, your brain will start to associate the flavors with carbonation, sweeteners, and caffeine. Which will make you start craving the flavor of Diet Coke. This is probably part of the reason people become brand loyal to particular diet beverages.

How do you know if you have an addiction? If you find yourself approaching our 18 can a day safety limit, thats definitely a sign.

You dont have to go cold turkey on this one:

Aspartame Has An Incredible 92 Different Symptoms Associated With It

Industry-Funded Study Says Diet Soda Helps You Lose Weight

Ive broken the most common of these reported symptoms down based on the system they affect:

Neurological

Aspartame appears to have a profoundly negative effect on the nervous system. It has been shown to cause seizures, headaches, hyperactivity, restless legs, dizziness, numbness in extremities, tinnitus, noise intolerance, facial pain, and slurred speech. These effects occur because aspartame is a potent neurotoxin that destroys healthy brain cells over time.

Psychological

Oftentimes, patients would present with anxiety, depression, irritability, mood swings, and even personality changes that couldnt be explained. Once they stopped drinking the diet soda, their moods often slowly and steadily returned to normal after a period of weeks. Aspartame has also been linked to phobias, suicide attempts, and even homicidal thoughts and actions!

Gastrointestinal

Consumption of diet soda has been linked to nausea, diarrhea, blood in the stool, chronic abdominal pain, and pain with swallowing.

Respiratory

Shortness of breath, heart palpitations, and sudden blood pressure spikes has been associated with increased aspartame consumption.

Endocrine and Metabolic

Diabetes, PMS, thinning hair, sudden weight loss or gain, and hypoglycemia can also be caused by aspartame.

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Cutting Out Sugary Drinks

Apart from desserts, there may be other sources of sugar in your diet that you can cut back on to help you reach your weight loss goals. Sugary drinks is one of them.

Sodas, energy drinks and sports drinks are usually loaded with sugar and calories. These calories are known as empty calories because they often have no other nutritional value in the form of protein, vitamins, minerals or fiber.

These drinks also usually contain a number of other additives like artificial coloring, flavoring and acids that are harmful to your health. The USDA recommends skipping these drinks and opting for water instead.

Read more:The Top 10 Worst Soft Drinks For Your Health

Even fruit juices, which we tend to think of as healthy, can contain a lot of sugar. For example, an 8-ounce serving of apple juice has 26 grams of sugar in it. That’s roughly 6 teaspoons of sugar. Some fruit juices have added sugar, but even 100 percent fruit juices have a lot of sugar in them because fruits contain natural sugars.

A study published in August 2013 in the BMJ found that consumption of fruit juice was linked to a higher risk of Type 2 diabetes. Whole fruits have fiber to slow down the absorption of sugar fruit juice does not.

Other sugary drinks to watch out for are tea and coffee. Store-bought teas and coffees tend to have quite a bit of sugar, the flavored ones especially. For example, a small-sized flavored latte has 27.3 grams, or roughly 6.5 teaspoons, of sugar.

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What Is Diet Soda

Diet soda is a zero-calorie, sugar-free version of a carbonated beverages. For example: to give the diet soda its classic sweet taste, Diet Coke contains aspartame and Splenda, both of which are artificial sweeteners, which contain no actual sugar or calories.

That said, artificial sweeteners can be between 200 to 600 times sweeter than table sugar, says Schapiro. So while diet soda is calorie[ and sugar-free, it can still taste sugary.

Diet Soda: Good Or Bad

Can Cutting Soda From Your Diet Help You Lose Weight?

    Diet sodas are popular beverages all over the world, especially among people who want to reduce their sugar or calorie intake.

    Instead of sugar, artificial sweeteners, such as aspartame, cyclamates, saccharin, acesulfame-k, or sucralose, are used to sweeten them.

    Almost every popular sugar-sweetened beverage on the market has a light or a diet version Diet Coke, Coke Zero, Pepsi Max, Sprite Zero, etc.

    Diet sodas were first introduced in the 1950s for people with diabetes, though they were later marketed to people trying to control their weight or reduce their sugar intake.

    Despite being free of sugar and calories, the health effects of diet drinks and artificial sweeteners are controversial.

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    Your Current Level Of Activity

    Working a sedentary job is a common culprit for weight gain. Add to this factors such as a long commute, or a busy, irregular lifestyle and you may be at the lowest level of physical activity.

    A sedentary lifestyle can cause many other health problems besides weight gain. It can be a leading risk factor for diabetes, heart disease, anxiety, and depression.

    Week Three: Traveling Poses An Extra Challenge

    In the middle of January, I went to Finland for a week, and I realized I usually drink a lot of Diet Coke both on travel days and when abroad. Honestly, I missed it.

    For starters, European Diet Coke is actually my favourite of all diet cola variants . I was sad not to be able to enjoy it.

    On the flip-side, I had fun Finnish drinks to try, like flavored vitamin waters and something called a Kane’s Ruby Hill Thrill which was a delicious fizzy strawberry drink.

    I’ll be honest, I wasn’t entirely sure if it should be classed as a diet soda, but I figured if I didn’t really know what it was, it was allowed.

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    The Problem With Regular Sodas Isnt Just The Calories

    If youre drinking two 12-ounce cans of regular Coke each day, you could eliminate 280 empty calories by switching to a zero-calorie alternative. Over a month, thats 8,400 fewer calories, enough to lose almost two and a half pounds. So, whats the catch?

    One worry is that artificially sweetened diet sodas may create a craving for sweet, high-calorie foods. So, even as calorie counts drops from zero-calorie sodas, consumption of other foods and drinks might add back even more. In rodent studies, at least one artificial sweetener has been found to damage a part of the brain that tells the animal when to stop eating.

    And a number of studies in humans have actually found a tendency toward weight gain among people drinking artificially sweetened beverages. But research has been mixed: other studies have found that artificially sweetened low-calorie beverages can help with weight loss.

    One factor complicating the study of zero-calorie beverages and weight loss is called reverse causation. People at risk for obesity tend to choose these beverages, making it appear that these drinks are to blame.

    Of course, there are other health concerns associated with artificial sweeteners, including a possible increase in the risk of certain cancers, cardiovascular disease, and kidney problems. The evidence for this isnt strong enough to be sure, though.

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