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The Consumer

Diet soda can still make you fat

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The coming Christmas season may mean suspending those diets and weight-loss regimens to enjoy traditional but high-calorie, holiday dishes.

But those who think they can reduce the risk of gaining several extra pounds in the next few weeks by drinking diet soda will have to reconsider.

In the article “7 Side Effects of Drinking Diet Soda” from the MSN Healthy Living site, Mandy Oaklander says too much of the supposedly low-calorie beverage can cause problems, ranging from kidney damage to—believe it or not—obesity, the very thing drinkers of the stuff are trying to avoid.

Oaklander says that following an 11-year-long Harvard Medical School study of more than 3,000 women, researchers associated diet cola with a “two-fold increased risk for kidney decline.” Researchers, Oakland says, suspect the artificial sweeteners used in diet drinks may be responsible for the problem.

Diet soda is also linked by a 2008 University of Minnesota study of almost 10,000 adults to 34 percent higher risk of metabolic syndrome. This refers to a group of symptoms that include belly fat and high cholesterol associated with heart disease.

A University of Texas Health Science Center study, on the other hand, found that “the more diet sodas a person drank, the greater their risk of becoming overweight.” A Purdue University study suggests that artificial sweeteners may disrupt the body’s natural ability to regulate calorie intake.

Oaklander adds that cocktails made with diet soda can get people “drunker, faster,” according to a study of the Royal Adelaide Hospital in Australia. “Sugar-free mixers allow liquor to enter your bloodstream quicker than those with sugar.”

Nearly all diet drinks contain sodium benzoate or potassium benzoate, mold inhibitors that many regular sodas do not have. These preservatives can cause cell damage. Oaklander quotes Peter Piper, a professor of molecular biology and biotechnology at the University of Sheffield in the United Kingdom, who says, “These chemicals have the ability to cause severe damage to DNA in the mitochondria to the point that they totally inactivate it.”

The chemicals have also been associated with hives, asthma and other allergic conditions, according to the Center for Science in the Public Interest.

Diet soda, Oaklander adds, has also been found to be very acidic, just like its regular counterpart, and can readily dissolve the teeth’s enamel.

Containers used for both regular and diet sodas can be sources of problems, as well. Oaklander says “cans are coated with the endocrine disruptor bisphenol A, which has been linked to everything from heart disease to obesity to reproductive problems.”

Buy shoes, give shoes

Toms, a leading manufacturer of shoes and accessories, has embarked on a project to provide shoes to those who cannot afford to buy them. While Filipinos, especially the women, are notorious for having so many pairs of shoes, there are people in this world who do not even have slippers. Shoes, as we all know, are not just for making fashion statements. They also protect our feet from injury and disease-causing organisms.

Under Toms’ initiative, every pair of shoes bought means a pair of shoes for somebody who needs it.

Send letters to The Consumer, Lifestyle Section, Philippine Daily Inquirer, 1098 Chino Roces Ave. cor. Mascardo and Yague Sts., 1204 Makati City; fax 8974793/94; or e-mail lbolido@inquirer.com.ph.


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  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_UOB3QKGCMHXEJQHPYGQOQ4QSAQ 7hitman

    regular soda not diet soda makes you fat!



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