It’s no secret that water is the healthiest beverage option out there—no calories, no sugar, just hydration. But while water only has positive benefits for you, soda has nothing for you. Nutrition experts not only recommend limiting your consumption of soda, but most advocate for avoiding it altogether as there are zero health benefits and several negative impacts.
Hydration: Soda vs. Water
Through the course of you day, you lose eight cups of water from your body to sweat and urination. If you don’t replace all of this water, you become susceptible to a lot of health issues. Headaches, dizziness, drowsiness, nausea, vomiting, muscle cramps, and dry mouth are all possible symptoms of dehydration. Most adults don’t drink the recommended amount of water each day, and experience these symptoms often.
Soda doesn’t replace any of the water you lose—in fact, because it increases your body’s production of urine, it makes dehydration worse.
One 12 ounce soda contains 45 milligrams of caffeine—that’s double the amount of caffeine in a standard cup of coffee. If you do drink soda, try to drink one extra glass of water for each can of soda you drink in a day!
An average 12 ounce soda also contains about 150 calories, and almost all of them come from sugar. So, if you drink two sodas a day for a whole month, you’ll have taken in about 5 pounds of sugar and 9,000 calories just from your beverages. Cearly, over time this will lead to weight gain and all the health problems that accompany it, like fatty liver disease and metabolic syndrome. Even to a less extreme extent, you can feel sluggish and tired, impeding your daily mood and productivity.
According to a study done by the Harvard School of Public Health, diet sodas are hardly any better for you. The artificial sweeteners in them cause intense cravings for other sweet foods and drinks, and this leads to an increase in calorie and sugar intake even though the sodas don’t contribute calories themselves.
And while soda makes weight loss much more difficult, water has been proven extremely effective in promoting healthy weight. The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics found that adults who drink a large glass of water before a meal eat about 75 calories less than those who don’t. Not to mention, water has zero calories, zero sugar, and doesn’t promote unhealthy cravings like sodas do.
All the sugars and acids in soda are not kind to your teeth. The acid breaks down the enamel on your teeth, leaving them vulnerable to cavities and tooth decay. The sugar drastically increases the amount of bacteria in your mouth, and as they feed on it, they create enamel-damaging acids themselves.
All the while, water, especially tap water and special bottled water, contains fluoride which actively strengthens and protects you teeth.
Making the Change
Cutting out soda completely can be difficult—the more soda you drink, the more you crave it. So, don’t be too hard on yourself! It can take a while to wean your body off of all the sugar and caffeine. Start first by increasing your water intake without cutting down on the soda yet. You’ll feel the difference in no time. Then, once you get used to drinking more water (get ready to use the bathroom a lot) you can start cutting back on your soda drinking.
Start slow! If you drink two cans of soda a day, try drinking just one. You can also try switching to sparkling water—you’ll get the same carbonated sensation, as well as some lemon or lime flavor, without all the sugar and calories.
For more information and tips on staying hydrated, contact Water Way today.