This isn’t really a new subject for me. I’ve said it before, it’s just that in the last few months Harvard and other estimable intuitions have backed me up with their studies. Permit me a brief “I told you so.”
The results from a study conducted by the National Instituteof Environmental Health Sciences (smart people) revealed that out of 263,925 people, those who drank four or more servings of soda per day were more prone to develop depression than those who didn’t. I’m thinking the giant cups handed out at fast food restaurants and gas stations are at least four servings.
Another study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition this past November showed that women who drank more soft drinks had an 83% higher risk of stroke than those who didn’t.
But don’t think if you stick with diet soda you’re safe, putting aside the cancer risks, for a moment, there are other risks. In 2012, a study in the showed a link between drinking a diet soda every day and heart attack risk.
And another study conducted by Harvard in late in 2012 of 1,878 students at Boston public high schools found that heavy soda drinkers were much more prone to violent behaviors than other teens.
Most people do agree that soda consumption can be a factor in obesity, but more recent studies draw that conclusion clearly. A monstrous study that spanned decades and involved 33,000 Americans yielded proof that drinking sugary beverages interacts with genes that affect weight, making people more at risk for obesity.
And that’s not all folks – another study concluded that drinking a soda a day increased a man’s chances of developing an aggressive form of prostate cancer. That ought to motivate more than a few men to give up the soda habit.
I’m waiting for the study that links the increase in soda consumption and the increase in autoimmune and learning disabilities in kids over the past thirty years. Makes me want to be a scientist.
Sure, it’s hard to attribute these negative reactions solely to soda, but even the most dedicated doubter has to admit, the studies are piling up. If you haven’t picked a New Year’s resolution yet, maybe giving up soda might be a good one.
As a reformed soda drinker, I know it sounds impossible to give up your favorite beverage. I was thoroughly addicted to Fresca and Diet Coke for many years. But when I gave up soda and started drinking tea (black, green, and herbal) I noticed three things within weeks that aren’t mentioned in those illustrious studies above: 1) I didn’t feel as tired all the time 2) I lost five pounds and 3) food tasted better.
Bottom line: If you want to dramatically improve the health of your family ban the soda. Do my kids ever drink soda? Two of them always order soda when out at restaurants or over at friend’s houses. I don’t sweat it because it’s a special treat, not an everyday staple. My daughter has never developed a taste for soda and thinks it’s disgusting. I’ve told you she’s a smart girl.
If you google soda and recent studies, you’ll find even more studies detailing the dangers of soda, I just picked the ones that came out in the past six months. The evidence is insurmountable unless you’re a politician living firmly in the deep pockets of the soft drink lobby. But I know you’re smarter than that.