Category Archives: soft drinks

Diet and regular soft drinks linked to risk factors for heart disease – Study

I  have written repeatedly about the dangers of soft drinks, both sugary and artificial sweeteners. You can search the subject by punching soft drinks into the S E A R C H box at the right.

Drinking more than one soft drink daily — whether it’s regular or diet — may be associated with an increase in the risk factors for heart disease, Framingham researchers reported in Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association.

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Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

“We were struck by the fact that it didn’t matter whether it was a diet or regular soda that participants consumed, the association with increased risk was present,” said Ramachandran Vasan, M.D., senior author of the Framingham Heart Study and professor of medicine at Boston University School of Medicine. “In those who drink one or more soft drinks daily, there was an association of an increased risk of developing the metabolic syndrome.”

Metabolic syndrome is a cluster of cardiovascular disease and diabetes risk factors including excess waist circumference, high blood pressure, elevated triglycerides, low levels of high-density lipoprotein (HDL “good” cholesterol) and high fasting glucose levels. The presence of three or more of the factors increases a person’s risk of developing diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

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How soda impacts your body – Infographic

I haven’t posted anything on soft drinks for a while, yet they remain popular. If you need more, check out my Page – What’s wrong with soft drinks?

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Tony

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Soft Drink Makers Again Adding Sugar – WSJ

A glance at the headers along the top shows the listing for my Page – What’s Wrong with Soft Drinks?

I am an equal opportunity analyst and I find fault with both the sugary soft drinks and the chemically-laden diet soft drinks.

Yesterday’s Wall Street Journal reported that “Fewer people are gulping soft drinks. In the past five years, the volume of soda consumed in the U.S. has declined between 1% and 3% each year. Diet sodas have fallen especially sharply, between 2.5% and 6% annually, according to Beverage Marketing Corp., a New York research and consulting firm.

So, apparently folks are backing away more from the diet sodas than sugared although sales of both are sliding.

To counter this trend, soft drink makers are selling a new angle for their beverages: “They contain sugar,” the Wall Street Journal reports.

Talk about pick your poison. One is worse than the other for you. I think you are better off drinking something else, like, say, water?

Interestingly, fruit drinks aren’t a lot better. Across the pond – researchers from the University of Liverpool and colleagues from Action on Sugar have assessed the sugar content of over 200 fruit drinks marketed at children and have found them to be “unacceptably high.”

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The research, conducted by Professor Simon Capewell from the University’s Institute of Psychology, Health and Society and Action on Sugar has been published Thursday, 24 March in the online journal BMJ Open. Continue reading

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Soda Sales Continue Nearly Twenty-Year Freefall

Per Capita Consumption Drops More Than 26% From 1998 Peak


Regular readers know that I feel strongly about the dangers of soda, both diet and sugared. You can check out my Page: What’s Wrong with Soft Drinks? to learn more about it.

I was pleased to read the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) report that sales are declining.

Americans, eager to reduce their risk of diabetes, heart disease, obesity, and tooth decay are continuing to cut down on their consumption of full-calorie soda, according to new data released by the trade publication Beverage Digest. Based on those data, the nonprofit Center for Science in the Public Interest says that Americans are drinking more than one-fourth less soda than in 1998, when consumption peaked. In fact, Americans are now back to drinking about as much as they did in 1985. CSPI is urging health officials at the local, state, and federal levels of government to enact policies to drive down soda consumption even further, perhaps to levels observed in the 1960s, when soda was an occasional treat served in reasonable portions.

“Drinking nine or 10 teaspoons of sugar makes no sense, and most Americans have wised up to what’s really in a single soda,” said CSPI president Michael F. Jacobson. “The soda industry, which for years has lectured the public about energy balance and moderation, has been marketing excessive consumption, both in terms of frequency and volume. A comprehensive government strategy to drive down consumption further could be a boon to Americans’ health and lower the healthcare costs paid by taxpayers.”

Lawmakers in California are proposing a two-cent-per-ounce health impact fee on sugar-sweetened beverages in that state. In Philadelphia, Mayor Jim Kenney (D) is proposing a three-cent-per-ounce excise tax on sugary drinks to help raise $400 million over five years for universal Pre-K, parks, and other programs. In Congress, Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) has offered legislation that would institute a tax of one-cent per teaspoon of caloric sweetener. CSPI has estimated that a federal excise tax could raise $10 billion a year for prevention programs.

I don’t share the CSPI’s notion of getting the government more involved in affecting what private citizens eat and drink through raising taxes or any other way. This is still a free country. Let’s keep it that way. It seems like we are off to a good start judging from the fall off in sales in the past 20 years.

Tony

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What’s Really in Your Drink? – Infographic

I found this on the web and thought it worth sharing. Regular readers know I am not a fan of soda drinks, sugared or chemicalled up. You can check out my Page – What’s Wrong With Soft Drinks? for details.

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Tony

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Diet Soda Linked to Larger Waistlines of Older Adults – Study

In a study of people over age 65 for a nine year period, individuals who drank diet sodas had a noticeably larger waistline than those who didn’t.

Lead author, Dr. Sharon P.G. Fowler of the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, said that research in other age groups has directly linked drinking diet sodas with higher risk of diabetes, metabolic syndrome and preterm birth.

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The article was published online in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.

Those people who did not drink diet soda gained an average of 0.8 inches in waist circumference over the nine-year period compared to 1.83 inches for occasional diet soda drinkers and more than three inches for people who drank diet soda every day, according to the results.

Reuters reported that ““It cannot be explained by the calories,” said Dr. Francisco Lopez-Jimenez of the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, who was not involved in the study.

People who drink diet soda may be more likely to overeat in other areas, he told Reuters Health.

“The main point is for those who drink a lot of soda, diet or not, there may be a relationship with obesity,” Lopez-Jimenez said.”

As regular readers know, I feel strongly that diet and sugary sodas should be consumed very sparingly. I, personally, don’t drink more than one a month if I can help it. There are chemicals in the diet drink that suppress the satiety response in humans which results in overeating and weight gain.

Please check out my Page What’s Wrong with Soft Drinks
for more details.

Tony

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Possible Side Effects of Soda on You – Infographic

I have written repeatedly about the dangers of soft drinks, both diet and sugared. If you want to fill yourself in as opposed to filling yourself up, check out my Page – What’s Wrong With Soft Drinks?

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Tony

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How Much Sugar is in Your Favorite Drink? – Infographic

I just ran across this superb infographic and had to share it with you. It shows you popular soft and energy drinks with the amount of sugar in each. Did you know that Mountain Dew had 19+ teaspoons of sugar in a 20 ounce bottle? I sure didn’t. There are 4.2 grams in a teaspoon full of sugar. If you carry that away with you, you will know a very valuable little factoid. So, when you look at the ingredients panel and it says 30 grams of sugar, you will know that you are thinking of drinking seven teaspoons of sugar. Maybe it will give you pause.

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In earlier posts I have taken issue with McDonald’s and their beverages. Check out:
How Many Calories in McDonald’s Chocolate Chip Frappe and How Much Sugar?
Why McDonald’s Shamrock Shake is a Sugar Monster
What Does The American Heart Association Say About Sugar?
Why You Shouldn’t Drink McDonald’s Frozen Strawberry Lemonade.

Tony

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What is a Healthy Way to Handle Food Cravings?

Everyone has suffered from food cravings at one time or another. For some of us the memory lingers on. Let him who is without sin cast the first stone.

Chocolate, carbonated drinks and bread are three examples of food items that spring immediately to my mind.

I certainly know about cravings for chocolate. I am not sure that I have fully conquered mine. I also know that while both men and women crave chocolate, women have it worse. Some 25 per cent of men crave chocolate, while 40 per cent of women do. Anecdotally, I have only met one woman in my life who didn’t.

Often a craving for chocolate is a result of a deficiency in levels of the trace mineral magnesium.

Often a craving for chocolate is a result of a deficiency in levels of the trace mineral magnesium.

FITDAY says, “Eating chocolate makes you feel good, because it increases levels of serotonin in your brain. Serotonin is the neurotransmitter that is responsible for feelings of well-being and enhanced mood. Many women experience lowered serotonin levels in the 7 to 10 days prior to their menstrual periods, which is one reason why premenstrual women often have powerful cravings for chocolate.

“High levels of stress can also make women and men crave chocolate, since increasing serotonin levels can also lead to significant reductions in anxiety. Chocolate is a popular comfort food. It is chosen by emotional eaters, since eating it can raise serotonin levels and help comfort eaters forget about emotional or other problems, low self-esteem or mildly depressed mood.”

Chocolate also contains trace minerals, including magnesium, which are often deficient in women around their menstrual cycles. So, instead of seeking solace in a Hershey bar, munching on some nuts, or leafy green veggies might restore magnesium levels in a healthier way.

Similarly, a lust for sodas and carbonate beverages can be linked to a low calcium supply. Again, dump the diet soda and get into some green veggies, like broccoli or kale.

While I don’t share the carbonated beverage craving, I will confess that some breads are absolutely magnificent to my taste buds. But a bread craving can also trace back to a shortage of nitrogen. Legumes, cauliflower and spinach are super sources.

So, if you find yourself on the wrong end of a craving, instead of just digging in, there may be a far healthier alternative. Don’t cave in to the cravin’.

Tony

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Soda Sabotages Your Diet

Regular readers know that I feel strongly about the damage sodas do to our bodies. So, I was pleased to see the item By Jennifer Gruenemay, ACE-Certified on Lifescript, a website for women’s healthy living.

“Fifteen pounds in one year. That’s how much weight you could gain by drinking just one regular soda every day. Sodas have around 150 calories each and no nutritional value whatsoever. So they should definitely be classified in your book as a “once in awhile” treat, not an everyday indulgence. Not only is your waistline at risk if you have a soda obsession, but your health is too.”

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That is a fact worth noting. Many folks indulge in ‘just one’ soda under the illusion it is harmless. It ain’t.

The item continued, “According to a Nurse’s Health Study of more than 50,000 women, those who had one or more sodas every day not only gained extra weight, they also raised their risk of developing type 2 diabetes by 83%.”

Those are some compelling reasons to avoid soda. Strangely, the Lifescript piece concludes with the recommendation – “If you must indulge in a daily soda, try diluting your regular soda with diet soda and then moving over completely to the diet soda side. Or, fill up on water flavored with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice. It’s the best drink available for your body, and it’s free.”

I am totally behind the water and/or fruit juice suggestion, but diet soda?! No way, Jose. There is a good chance that diet soda is more damaging than the sugary kind. I had a friend who drank a lot of diet soda every day. One of his complaints was that he was “always hungry.” That is just one of the reasons to avoid these chemical concoctions. The ingredients in diet soda depress your satiety response and you can feel always hungry no matter how much you eat.

Please check out my Page – What’s Wrong with Soft Drinks? which gives chapter and verse on why you are well advised to avoid both.

Tony

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Filed under calories, diabetes, diet soda, fruit drinks, Lifescript, soda, soft drinks, Weight, weight control, weight loss

The Dark Side of Laws Banning Soft Drinks

Everyone knows that Mayor Bloomberg’s proposal to cap soda servings at restaurants at 16 ounces was halted by the New York Supreme Court last week.

I have written numerous posts on the evils of soft drinks, both sugary and diet (chemical-laden). But, I think that people have to right to make up their own minds and if they want to drink these concoctions they should be able to despite the fact that the drinks are a major cause of the obesity problem plaguing this country.

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This blog back in June came out against the ban. I have an entire page of posts on What’s Wrong With Soft Drinks?.

So, clearly I have mixed feelings about it, I oppose the drinks but support the rights of individuals to drink them.

I was very disappointed to learn that other opposition to the ban resulted not from concern about individual rights, but from generous gifts by the soft drink industry, Coca-Cola.

The NAACP joined the opposition to the ban, despite the fact the the obesity rate for African-Americans in New York City is higher than the city average. The New York Times said that “minority neighborhoods would be among the key beneficiaries of a rule that would limit the sale of super-size, calorie-laden beverages.”

Coca-Cola donated $100,000 to the NAACP as recently as December. Ironically, it was for Project H.E.L.P., (Healthy Eating, Lifestyle Change and Physical Activity), a program dedicated to promoting active and healthy living.

The Hispanic Federation also lists Coke as a donor. In February 2012, its president, Lillian Rodriguez Lopez, left the nonprofit group to become director of Latin Affairs at Coke.

It seems really disappointing to see these minority groups taking gifts from the soft drink industry and then supporting the industry in a situation that is clearly harmful to their members.

According to the Center for Science in the Public Interest CSPI, the soda industry’s generosity includes groups representing doctors, dentists, dieticians, anti-hunger advocates and others.

Sad to see this money possibly standing in the way of the war on obesity.

Tony

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One Picture is worth a Thousand Words Department

Actually, since these are posters, I suppose that should be “One Word Picture …”

 
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Tony

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Some Insights into Sugary Soda Drinking

Graphic lifted from Everyday Health

Graphic lifted from Everyday Health

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Xtreme Eating Awards 2013- CSPI

A milkshake with a slice of apple pie blended right in. A 3,000-calorie plate of pasta. A breakfast that includes deep-fried steak and pancakes (and hash browns and eggs and gravy and syrup). Obesity rates may show signs of leveling off, but it looks like America’s major restaurant chains are doing everything possible to reverse the trend, according to the nonprofit Center for Science in the Public Interest. The group unveils the latest “winners” of its Xtreme Eating Awards in the current issue of its Nutrition Action Healthletter.

“It’s as if IHOP, The Cheesecake Factory, Maggiano’s Little Italy, and other major restaurant chains are scientifically engineering these extreme meals with the express purpose of promoting obesity, diabetes, and heart disease,” said CSPI executive director Michael F. Jacobson. “You’d think that the size of their profits depended on their increasing the size of your pants.”

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Most people wouldn’t sit down to eat a 12-piece bucket of Original Recipe KFC all by themselves, says CSPI. Yet The Cheesecake Factory somehow crams about that many calories into a single serving of its Crispy Chicken Costoletta—though the bucket of KFC has less than half the saturated fat, “only” two days’ worth as opposed to the four-and-a-half days’ worth in the costoletta. In fact, the Crispy Chicken Costoletta has more calories (2,610) than any steak, chop, or burger meal on The Cheesecake Factory’s famously oversized menu.

To put these numbers into context, a typical adult should consume about 2,000 calories and no more than 20 grams of saturated fat and 1,500 milligrams of sodium per day. The Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends consuming no more than six teaspoons of added sugars for women and nine teaspoons for men. The Xtreme Eating dis-honorees include:
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Sweetened Drinks Linked to Depression, Coffee Tied to Lower Risk

Love it! I am a coffee drinker and don’t touch soft drinks.

I have posted on the danger of soft drinks. Check out my Page – What’s Wrong With Soft Drinks?

Tony

Cooking with Kathy Man

New research suggests that drinking sweetened beverages, especially diet drinks, is associated with an increased risk of depression in adults while drinking coffee was tied to a slightly lower risk. The study was released today and will be presented at the American Academy of Neurology’s 65th Annual Meeting in San Diego, March 16 to 23, 2013. “Sweetened beverages, coffee and tea are commonly consumed worldwide and have important physical—and may have important mental—health consequences,” said study author Honglei Chen, MD, PhD, with the National Institutes of Health in Research Triangle Park in North Carolina and a member of the American Academy of Neurology.

The study involved 263,925 people between the ages of 50 and 71 at enrollment. From 1995 to 1996, consumption of drinks such as soda, tea, fruit punch and coffee was evaluated. About 10 years later, researchers asked the participants whether they had been diagnosed with depression since…

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Oleda Baker on What’s Wrong With Drinking Soda – Guest Post

As you can see from her photo, Senior Supermodel Oleda Baker doesn’t age. I interviewed Oleda last month. She is a treasure trove of information on everything this blog stands for, so I asked her if she would share some of her ideas with us. She has written 10 books on beauty and health. Her latest, Breaking the Age Barrier – Great Looks and Health at Every Age – was released in November 2010 and is available from Amazon or from her website www.oleda.com

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Oleda chose soft drinks, a subject in which I am extremely interested. I will put in links at the end of Oleda’s item to previous blog posts.

Some people drink soda as if it were water, some even drink it instead of water. This is a bad mistake. Granted, the primary ingredient is water, but, with all the other “stuff” it contains it can have a seriously harmful effect on your entire body. Drinking several cans of soda a day is a sure-fire way to damage your health.

The Mayo Clinic said, “Soda was once considered an occasional treat, but consumption has steadily increased over the last three decades. Many Americans drink soda every day. Demand is so great that manufacturers produce enough soda to supply the average man, woman and child in America with more than 52 gallons each year.”
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