There have been murmurings for decades that soft drinks, regardless of being diet or regular, could still take a negative toll on the body. Since they are so widely consumed, any health news in this area is important to consider. A new study out of Miami has found that people who drink diet soda every day could be at higher risk of strokes, heart attacks, and even vascular death.
Just as important as understanding what are available to you as healing foods is knowing which foods and beverages do the opposite of healing. Regular soda is extraordinarily high in simple sugar and has long been tied to the obesity epidemic. It has had people switching to diet soda, which may be a wiser move, however not necessarily the solution.
That is, for people who like soda each day. The study found that a more moderate intake of diet soft drinks does not appear to be linked to a higher risk of “vascular events.”
(Read more about the case against diet soda here.)
As we exist within the wide grasp of obesity and type 2 diabetes, artificially sweetened soft drinks are marketed as healthier alternatives to sugar-sweetened beverages — due to their lack of calories. However, the long-term health consequences of drinking diet soft drinks remain unclear.
The researchers looked at the relationship between both diet and regular soft drink consumption and risk of stroke, heart attack, and vascular death. They analyzed 2,564 people in a study designed to uncover how much influence stroke has on the population.
So they assessed how often people drank diet and regular soft drinks. They counted the number of vascular events that occurred over a 10-year period. Then, they found that those who drank diet soft drinks daily were 43% more likely to have suffered a heart attack or stroke than those who drank none.
“Light” diet soft drink users and, amazingly, those who drank regular soda were not more likely to suffer vascular events. The results suggest a potential link between daily diet soft drink consumption and major events of the heart. But how this happens is unclear. The researchers are calling, as usual, for further research before any conclusions can be drawn regarding the potential health consequences of diet soft drink consumption.
But for now, one message has always remained clear. Choosing water is always the healthier option over any type of soft drink. It is best, from a nutritional standpoint, to view regular or diet soda as more of a treat than something to be consumed each day. It is a wholly unnatural product and its effects on our bodies have yet to be truly understood despite the enormous amount of soda consumed around the world.