Why should you not drink Coke?

coke

Scientific studies reveal that 1 to 1.5 liters of soft drinks a day can raise risks of numerous health problems, such as:

Tooth Decay:
All soft drinks are acidic which corrodes the teeth by eroding its enamel.

The high amount of sugar consumed through soft drinks lead to the development of bacteria that attack the teeth thus aggravating dental problems.

People who drink three or more glasses of aerated drinks (gaseous drinks) daily have much higher chances of dental decay, fillings and teeth loss. Therefore, soft drinks contain acid and sugar that corrode and destroy the teeth in one shot.

Obesity:
Soft drinks are mainly composed of filtered H2O, artificial additives and refined sugar.
Thus, they lack nutritional value and only add up calories through their refined sugar; therefore, they make you gain weight.
But is shifting to ‘Diet Soft Drink’ the solution?

The fact is that diet soft drinks contain aspartame (an artificial low-calorie sweetener). Although aspartame does not add up the calories it makes you feel hungrier and crave for food.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) no longer allows foods containing aspartame to be labeled as ‘weight reduction product ‘. Now it insists to label these products simply as ‘Diet Drink’ or ‘Diet Food ‘.

Research also shows that aspartame causes migraines, dizziness and more over it reduces your memory.

Malnutrition:
Some people who are addicted to soft drinks deprive themselves from food until they become victims of malnutrition. Since gastrointestinal disturbance of these drinks lead to poor appetite thus surviving on soft drinks and little amount of food will cause malnutrition, retarded growth and other physiological problems.
Effect on Gastro-Intestinal System:

When you open the bottle of a soft drink, bubbles and fizz are immediately emitted out. This is due to phosphoric acid and carbon dioxide (CO2) content, which make these drinks highly acidic. The pH of soft drink ranges from 2.5-3.4 which generates a highly acidic environment in the stomach.

Throughout the digestive system, that starts from the mouth and ends up at the anus (liver, gallbladder and pancreas play the role of accessory organs) only the stomach can resist an acidic environment up to pH 2.0. But before the acidity of soft drink reaches the stomach it passes through all the other organs involved in the digestive system thus causing an abnormal acidic environment. Hence the linings of the mouth, pharynx and esophagus are highly sensitive to acids.

Also there is a very common practice of taking soft drinks when a person suffers from acidity or after having a heavy meal. However, this is wrong.

The phosphoric acid present in soft drink competes with the hydrochloric acid of the stomach and affects its functions. When the stomach becomes ineffective, food remains undigested causing indigestion, gassiness or bloating (swelling of stomach).

Thus people who are suffering from acidity should not be drinking soft drinks because actually it increases acidity further.

Effect on Kidneys:
Kidneys are less able to excrete phosphoric acid when it is in excess. Thus, there is extra work for kidney.

Soft drinks remove Calcium from the body, causing an excess amount of Calcium that tend to be deposited in kidney, resulting in nephrolithiasis (kidney stones).

Effect on Skin:
Acidic blood affects the action of glutathione, which is an antioxidant enzyme. In addition, these drinks lack vitamins and minerals. By taking these drinks, people cut their intake of fresh juices, milk and even water and deprive themselves from essential vitamins and minerals that are mandatory for skin. Thus, the skin becomes more prone to wrinkles and aging.

Effect on Bones:
Phosphoric acid, present in carbonated drinks is violently poisonous, it de-oxidizes blood. In detergent manufacturing industries, phosphoric acid is used to produce water softener. Water softener removes Ca²+ and Mg²+ ion from hard water. In human body, the function remains the same by removing Ca²+ from bones causing osteoporosis (porous bones).

Effect of Caffeine:
In most of carbonated beverages, caffeine is deliberately added to make it addictive. Caffeine in carbonated drink is more readily absorbed than any other drink (like coffee, chocolate etc.). Caffeine disturbs sleep by stimulating nervous system.

It also makes premenstrual syndrome worse, causes dehydration and induces stomach to produce acids, aggravating hyperacidity. Since caffeine disturbs sleep, the body is more likely to produce C – reactive protein, which plays an important role in heart disease.

Prevention:
Use straw to reduce direct contact with teeth.
Rinse your mouth with water after drinking aerated drink.

Or simply do not drink soft drinks.

Remember that diseases do not develop overnight but do develop over the years with improper dietary habits. Also each individual has different tolerance level. So think of all long term effects on your body. The multitude side effects depend on your genetics and an individual’s physical strength. Chronic illnesses are not a direct cause but they are triggered or worsened by bad food habits.

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Sanjana Shenoy

About Sanjana Shenoy

A dietitian from Mangalore, India. A post graduate diploma holder in “Dietetics” and a university topper from Welcomgroup School of Hotel Administration from the prestigious Manipal University. At present working as a Dietitian for the Manipal Group of Hospitals namely KMC hospital Mangalore, India. Consultant for corporates like Infosys and others, conducting talks and presentations for various associations and local television shows.

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4 Responses to Why should you not drink Coke?

  1. Cam August 9, 2008 at 8:24 am #

    Anyone drinking one and a half liters of soda pop per day deserves to be fat.
    There’s nothing wrong with a can every other day. It’s a luxury, to be used in moderation. Learn to control yourself and this is no longer a problem.

  2. Tykendia Bolton October 20, 2008 at 3:35 am #

    i wonder how nlong does it takes for soft drinks to erode teeth?

  3. yamaniac October 20, 2008 at 12:51 pm #

    well I am pretty damn sure it might take some time! You might have to possibly keep your teeth inside a coke bottle to see it erode more quickly! Best thing is to buy a test Denture and keep it inside the coke bottle and see the process by itself! What Say?? ;)

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