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Old 03-08-2012, 04:25 PM   #1
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Are diet soft drinks bad for you?

These people aren't selling anything, so I think it's OK to put the link here:

From Springer

New York / Heidelberg, 31 January 2012
Are diet soft drinks bad for you?

New study finds potential link between daily consumption of diet soft drinks and risk of vascular events

Individuals who drink diet soft drinks on a daily basis may be at increased risk of suffering vascular events such as stroke, heart attack, and vascular death. This is according to a new study by Hannah Gardener and her colleagues from the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine and at Columbia University Medical Center. However, in contrast, they found that regular soft drink consumption and a more moderate intake of diet soft drinks do not appear to be linked to a higher risk of vascular events. The research¹ appears online in the Journal of General Internal Medicine², published by Springer.

In the current climate of escalating obesity rates, artificially sweetened soft drinks are marketed as healthier alternatives to sugar-sweetened beverages, due to their lack of calories. However, the long-term health consequences of drinking diet soft drinks remain unclear.

Gardener and team examined the relationship between both diet and regular soft drink consumption and risk of stroke, myocardial infarction (or heart attack), and vascular death. Data were analyzed from 2,564 participants in the NIH-funded Northern Manhattan Study, which was designed to determine stroke incidence, risk factors and prognosis in a multi-ethnic urban population. The researchers looked at how often individuals drank soft drinks - diet and regular - and the number of vascular events that occurred over a ten-year period.

They found that those who drank diet soft drinks daily were 43 percent more likely to have suffered a vascular event than those who drank none, after taking into account pre-existing vascular conditions such as metabolic syndrome, diabetes and high blood pressure. Light diet soft drink users, i.e. those who drank between one a month and six a week, and those who chose regular soft drinks were not more likely to suffer vascular events.
Gardener concludes: "Our results suggest a potential association between daily diet soft drink consumption and vascular outcomes. However, the mechanisms by which soft drinks may affect vascular events are unclear. There is a need for further research before any conclusions can be drawn regarding the potential health consequences of diet soft drink consumption."

References
1. Gardener H et al (2012). Diet soft drink consumption is associated with an increased risk of vascular events in the Northern Manhattan Study. Journal of General Internal Medicine. DOI 10.1007/s11606-011-1968-2
2. The Journal of General Internal Medicine is the official journal of the Society of General Internal Medicine.
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Old 03-09-2012, 08:06 AM   #2
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Scares me....I love my coke zero and diet Lipton green tea..and I've been drinking diet coke since I was in 3rd grade :O
Thanks for posting this.
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Old 03-09-2012, 08:21 AM   #3
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I haven't had a diet drink in decades. I mostly drink (from most to least) lots of water, hot tea (green, black, oolong), coffee, iced tea when I 'eat out', and a few glasses per year of red wine.

I distill my own water and then add ConcenTrace mineral drops back in to make it alkaline and provide the minerals distillation takes out as it takes out the undesirable stuff.
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Old 03-09-2012, 08:49 AM   #4
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It's another study that shows a potential correlation but not causation. Note that this study is one that doesn't show what else their diets contain, etc. While they say they normalize for existing vascular disease, they say nothing about weight, exercise, etc. There's a lot of open questions on the study criteria here before I'd choose to accept some sort of causation link.

Personally, I don't think ANY soda is particularly healthy. I do choose to drink a diet soda occasionally, however.
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Old 03-09-2012, 06:59 PM   #5
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Stopped drinking soda last year, save money and don't have to recycle cans.
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Old 03-10-2012, 07:50 AM   #6
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It's another study that shows a potential correlation but not causation which is why they indicated it needs further study. It's also why the title asks a question.

Also most sodas, diet or not, contain sodium benzoate, which turns into Benzine which is a proven carcinogen.

According to the world's most esteemed source - wiki

Benzene levels are regulated in drinking water nationally and internationally, and in bottled water in the United States, but only informally in soft drinks. The benzene results from decarboxylation of the preservative benzoic acid in the presence of ascorbic acid (vitamin C) especially under heat and light.

Google it and you will find that actual trusted sources say the same thing.

Sounds to me like abstaining from soft drinks can be the proverbial ounce of prevention.

But then skiing, hang gliding, rock climbing, weight lifting and driving on US1 are also risky. Nobody gets out of here alive!

We all have to evaluate the pleasure/risk level of many activities in life. And what is right for one isn't necessarily right for another.
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Old 03-12-2012, 10:11 AM   #7
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I used to think that diet soda was "better" than drinking regular soda because of the calories. However, quitting it seems to have reduced cravings which led to eating more bad stuff.

I drink more water than before without over doing it. Just drink when I'm thirsty.
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Old 03-12-2012, 11:26 AM   #8
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I'm no doctor but I wouldn't say that its GOOD for you. Haven't had a soda in nearly a year and I don't even miss it.
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Old 03-12-2012, 03:29 PM   #9
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Nothing quenches the thirst like what you are actually thirsty for -- water.

But then a lot of the water in this country is also contaminated.

I have a well that the county says is safe, but it contains some tannins and a bit of sulfur making it unpleasant (and who knows what the county is ignoring). So I distill it, which leaves it acidic and devoid of minerals. So I add minerals back in with a product called ConcenTrace. So I know the gallon or so of water I drink in a day is about as good for me as I can provide for myself.

Diet soda has aspartame in it, which is no good for you, regular soda has high fructose corn syrup in it which is no good for you, and they both have sodium benzoate in them which is no good for you. For me, there isn't enough pleasure in soda to make it worth the risk - YMMV.

I'm in my mid 60s, I'm extremely healthy, I'm not taking any medications or prescriptions, and my blood work just came back with great numbers. I've been on low carb for 12 years. Good health is priceless.

An ounce of prevention is the best medicine.
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Old 03-12-2012, 04:31 PM   #10
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I also have a well and the water is excellent. Clean with trace minerals.
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Old 03-13-2012, 11:50 AM   #11
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I notice that I lose weight when I quit the diet soda. A ton. I stick to water and the occasional diet iced tea. Otherwise it is coffee or unsweetened ice tea, and seltzer once in a blue moon. Stevia lemonade is also great!
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