Or Coke Zero, depending on my mood. Actually sometimes I even go wild and opt for a Pepsi Max. I have consumed sugar-free soft drinks for as long as I can remember, despite the fact that I know they’re full of artificial ingredients and sweeteners. As someone who prioritizes eating a balanced diet and following a healthy lifestyle, my friends and family are always surprised that I am such a Diet Coke fiend. I know, it doesn’t make sense. Towards the end of , I realized my consumption was getting particularly high, and I was drinking a Diet Coke or another sugar-free soft drink most days. It seems like every health, fitness, or nutrition expert you speak to says something different about diet sodas, and the studies into the area reach equally confusing conclusions. The overall health implications of consuming artificial sweeteners are widely contested, and the same goes for their impact on weight management. There has been some research which suggests drinking diet sodas is linked to increased risk of stroke and Alzheimer’s, as well as diabetes.
Both caffeinated sodas and those without caffeine can cause water retention either because of their caffeine or because of their sodium content. If you experience water retention after drinking soda, there a few steps you can take to battle the bloat. Water retention can be caused by a number of factors, some of which are dietary. A diet high in caffeine or sodium can cause your body to hold onto fluids as it tries to make up for the need for extra water in your system. Water retention can also result from medication, sitting or standing for long periods, hormonal changes and high temperatures. While water retention is most common in your lower extremities, such as your legs, feet and ankles, it can also occur in your face and hands. Caffeine is a natural diuretic, meaning it encourages your body to release fluids, whether it requires them or not. Instead of helping treat water retention, the diuretic effect of caffeine can instead cause water retention, as your body releases more water than it can comfortably do so, causing your system to then hold onto as much fluid as it can to prevent possible dehydration.
You’ve decided to give up diet soda—good idea! Maybe you weren’t hitting your weight-loss goals or couldn’t stomach that long list of ingredients anymore. Or perhaps you heard one too many times that it’s just not good for you. Whatever the reason, eliminating diet soda from your diet will improve your health from head to toe. Research on diet soda is still in its infancy, but there’s enough out there to identify what you can look forward to when you put down the can and cool down with an unsweetened iced tea instead. Migraines Disappear and Focus Sharpens It turns out the headaches you expected from a diet-soda withdrawal didn’t materialize. And now that you’ve quit the stuff, you probably find yourself thinking clearly for the first time in a while. And a animal study found that rats that drank diet soda had damaged cells and nerve endings in the cerebellum—the part of the brain responsible for motor skills. If you’re still drinking diet soda, here’s what’s happening in your body right now. Taste Buds Are More Sensitive It’s not your imagination: Without your usual diet soda chaser, you may find that food has more flavor. It has subtlety.