Getting Your Wellness Back

Sugary Drinks Lead to Deaths

I’ve warned people about the dangers of soda for more than a while now and the list of reasons to avoid the beverages just keeps getting longer. Americans in particular get most of their daily calories from sugar, primarily in the form of high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) in soda and other sweetened beverages. Half of the US population over the age of two consumes sugary drinks on a daily basis, and this figure does not even include 100% fruit juices, flavored milk, or sweetened teas, all of which are sugary too, so the figure is actually even higher.

Preliminary research presented at the American Heart Association’s Epidemiology and Prevention/Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Metabolism 2013 Scientific Sessions suggests sugary beverages are to blame for about 183,000 deaths worldwide each year, including 133,000 diabetes deaths, 44,000 heart disease deaths and 6,000 cancer deaths.

Fructose has been identified as one of the primary culprits in the meteoric rise of obesity and related health problems, and while the majority of the problem is caused by the large quantities of high fructose corn syrup added to so many processed foods and sweetened beverage s, naturally occurring fructose in large amounts of fruit juice is also a problem. Fructose is also a likely culprit behind the millions of US children struggling with non-alcoholic liver disease, which is caused by a build up of fat cells within liver cells. Fructose is very hard on your liver, in much the same way as drinking alcohol.

Don’t fall for the latest “Designer Water” fad. I advise drinking water as your primary form of beverage. Many simply don’t drink enough water these days. But don’t be fooled by slick marketing. There are a number of “designer water” products available. Many products out there do not contain any juice. Rather it’s sweetened with sucralose and “natural fruit flavors.”

Different artificial sweeteners have been found to wreck havoc in a number of ways. Aspartame, for example, has a long list of studies indicating its harmful affects, ranging from brain damage to pre-term delivery. Sucralose has been found to be particularly damaging to your intestines. Unfortunately, most public health agencies and nutritionists in the US still recommend these toxic artificial sweeteners as acceptable and even preferred alternatives to sugar, which is at best confusing. Artificial sweeteners can stimulate your appetite, fat storage and cause weight gain.  

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