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Revealed: The truth about fizzy drinks

by , 07 May 2013

While consumers are looking for much healthier beverages, soda companies have jumped at the opportunity to convince consumers that fizzy drinks are the healthier alternative. Read on to discover the truth about fizzy drinks as Dr Jonathan Wright dispels the industry's biggest myths.

“The idea of a healthy soft drink may sound like an oxymoron. But to soda manufacturers, it’s the hottest trend in the better-for-you category of food and beverages,” says WebMD.

But can fizzy really be healthy?

Here’s what you need to know about sugary drinks and your health

Dr Wright of Nutrition & Healing expels the truth about sugary drinks:

Myth#1: Sugary drinks can be part of any diet if you’re watching your calories.

False: First of all, nobody needs any size serving of soda. There’s simply no place in any diet for a beverage that offers plenty of calories but zero nutritional value.

Myth#2: People rely on the carbohydrates and energy in fizzy drinks.

False: There’s absolutely no reason to substitute soda for a snack of real, wholesome food. The last thing a “teen needs heading into an afternoon of homework is a sugar spike followed by a major crash,” says Dr Wright. Instead, opt for a banana or handful of raw almonds

Myth#3: Sugar is not an addictive substance.

False: One study in the Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews concluded with a rat model that sugar dependence is real and that there’s no reason to believe that it isn’t true in humans also. Another study found that the effects of sugar addiction and withdrawal are actually similar to those seen in someone who abuses drugs. Other studies have shown that sugar works in the brain in the same way that drugs do.

Myth#4: There’s no scientific evidence connecting sugary beverages to obesity.

False: “You simply can’t argue about the effects of sugar on health,” says Dr Wright. According to the Journal of Pediatrics, consuming soda is linked to an increased BMI.

One study linked high fructose corn syrup (HFCS, the sugar found in most sodas) and obesity. Researchers at Princeton also found that rats that were fed with less HFCS than found in a can of soda gained significantly more weight than rats given table sugar, even when they were eating the same number of daily calories.

Bottom line: Fizzy drinks don’t have any health benefits, stay away from them!

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