How Diet Soda May be Slowly Killing You


Photo by NeONBRAND on Unsplash

Sorting through the constant noise being made by marketing companies can be really tough when it comes to better understanding your health.

Companies such as Coke and Pepsi have known since the 90’s that better health was going to be the ‘trend of tomorrow’, so they’ve worked hard to stay ahead.
Releasing beverages such as Coke Zero and Diet Coke were steps taken by the Coca-Cola company to keep ahead of consumer habits. Unfortunately for us though, they did a little too well with their marketing message.

According to Coke’s own website, 43% of the beverages they sell are marketed as either containing low or no sugar. They market them as healthy alternatives and as a good choice for those of us looking to avoid sugar and improve our lives.

What we didn’t realise was that in taking out the sugar, they had to replace it with more powerful sweeteners.
These sweeteners have meant a whole lot of new problems for our bodies to deal with, some of which we never evolved the tools to handle.

How we react to artificial sweeteners

Drinking an ordinary can of coke means adding 44 grams of sugar into your body.
This injection of sugar causes our pancreas to release insulin, which is a natural response whenever we eat or drink anything sugary. (Information courtesy of the Kaiser Foundation).

Insulin is a hormone that the body releases into our blood supply to handle the sugar we’re ingesting. The insulin finds the blood sugar we’ve created and turns some of it into energy, then stores the rest as fat.

However, artificial sweeteners don’t add to our blood sugar levels. The reason for this is as plain as the name, sweeteners aren’t sugar.

Our body can’t tell the difference, so it releases the insulin in an effort to manage the sugar, but doesn’t find any. This causes the insulin to occupy our blood stream completely uselessly, which raises our insulin resistance.

Insulin Resistance

Insulin resistance is a really serious medical problem. If we cause insulin to be released too often when it’s not needed, our body begins to see insulin as useless and treats it as such.

According to Remedy Health, insulin resistance causes a vicious cycle.

We feel hungry, so we eat food. The food causes a release of insulin, which then takes over management of the sugar in the food we just ate.
However the body is ignoring the insulin because it’s developed a resistance to insulin, so it’s unable to convert the sugar into energy.
Insulin can’t do its primary job, so it stores all the sugar as fat before uselessly spending more time in the blood stream, increasing resistance even further.

Although we ate, we never received any of the energy from the food because it was all stored as fat. So we eat again and the cycle repeats itself.


Diet soda causes an unnatural body response to insulin that leads to insulin resistance. Insulin resistance causes a buildup of fat and an inability to properly process sugar. This leads to an enormous amount of health consequences, the most obvious of which being type 2 diabetes.
Other consequences include obesity, heart problems, and far too high blood sugar levels.

One tell tale sign of insulin resistance is dark patches forming on the back of your neck, knees, armpits, and several other places.

Photo by Andrew George on Unsplash

What to do

If you think you’ve already caused your body to develop a resistance to insulin, you need to go see your doctor and have your blood tested.
Catching diabetes before it develops is the key to managing your health for the future.

If things haven’t progressed that far, now is the time to make changes.
First, cut out all kinds of soda, diet or otherwise. Water with a twist of lemon is a far better alternative that’s going to drastically improve your health.

Secondly, improve your diet. Start adding whole grains, lean meats, fruits and veggies into your diet. You can still turn your health around, and you’ll feel much better once you do.

Thirdly, start introducing exercise that you can manage. A fun gateway exercise is video game exercise, such as Ring Fit Adventure by Nintendo.
Another way is through dance fitness, such as Zumba. You can always catch some Zumba on YouTube and dance along for free in your living room.

Anything that’s going to get your body back to working the way it should is going to get your health back on track.

And next time, don’t believe the ads. No one in a coke commercial actually drinks coke.
In fact, if they did drink coke they wouldn’t have booked the gig to be in a coke commercial.
Tell yourself that when you’re next walking past the beverage isle. You really don’t need it, water with a twist of lemon is honestly delicious.

You’ve really got nothing if you don’t have your health.

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I’m a well travelled writer who loves nothing more than a well polished video game, an expertly crafted sandwich, and a hot mug of Milo.


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