The jury seems to be in on drinking soda. Two new studies published in the past week highlighted concerns with both diet and regular soft drinks. These studies have concluded that people would do better to switch to drinking water instead.
Obesity Risks from Regular Soda
Everyone understands that losing weight involves exercising and consuming fewer calories. However, the emphasis is usually on helping people change their eating habits. Many people do not consider the significant role that drinking sugary beverages plays in obesity.
A new study conducted by researchers at theÂ University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill found that obese people can lose significant weight simply by drinking water in place of soda. Over the course of a six month period, that decision could help them lose five pounds.
[box type=”important”]Deborah Tate, one of the researchers of the study, argued that this decision could help people lose a significant amount of weight over time.[/box]
Diet Soda Increases Risk of Heart Disease and Stroke
Diet sodas became popular in 1982. Although many people have reduced their calorie consumption by switching to diet soft drinks, they do not appear to be the ideal answer.
[box type=”important”]A new study published in the Journal of General Internal Medicine tracked 2,600 people drinking diet soda over the course of a decade. The study found that people who drank diet soda regularly were 44% more likely to suffer from a heart attack or stroke.[/box]
The researchers warned that this figure alone doesn’t prove diet soda increases the risk of developing a stroke. Hannah Gardner was the lead researcher of the study. Gardner said that people who drank diet soda on a regular basis tended to have other unhealthy habits as well. However, after factoring out those other variables it appeared that diet soda drinkers tended to have a higher risk of developing a heart attack or stroke than their peers.
Additionally, Gardner concluded two other findings in her study. She said that her team noticed that people who drank regular soda did not appear to be at a higher risk of developing heart disease or a stroke. Also, people who consumed diet soda on a less than daily basis did not either.
Gardner stated that it if there is a link between diet soda consumption and the risk of developing heart problems, it isn’t clear what it is.
Health Risks of Drinking Soda
These studies should help people become more aware of the fact that drinking soda doesn’t appear to be the healthiest decision. Tate’s team advocates that people consume more water, which can reduce glucose levels, carcinogens and other variables which would increase the risks of developing a number of health problems.