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We all know that drinking soda isn’t good for us. We know that it would be better for our health if instead we drank [insert pretty much any other beverage choice here]. But there’s just something about soda that keeps drawing us back. Whether you call it “soda,” “pop,” “soda pop,” “Coke,” or something else entirely, it’s a good idea to stop drinking it once and for all. Here’s why:
Health Reasons to Stop Drinking Soda
Here are just a few of the scientifically researched reasons to kick the habit.
1. Soda increases your blood pressure. A March 2011 study links soda consumption to higher blood pressure.
2. Soda destroys your teeth. In case your dentist hadn’t told you, between the sugar and the acidity, pop is terrible for your teeth. It erodes your tooth enamel!
3. It contains an ingredient banned in over 100 countries. About 10% of soda flavors contain BVO, or brominated vegetable oil, which is banned by the World Health organization and 100 countries.
4. It makes you fat. Calories from drinks including soda make up over 20% of the total daily calories consumed by Americans, according to a 2004 article in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine (as cited by WebMD).
5. It may lead to diabetes. Non-diet soft drinks contribute to the onset of type 2 diabetes. Even if you drink diet, you may not be in the clear (see the study published by the American Heart Association discussed below).
6. It may lead to heart disease. According to a study published by the American Heart Association, “Drinking as little as one can of soda a day — regular or diet — is associated with a 48% increased risk of metabolic syndrome, a key predecessor of heart disease and diabetes.”
7. Soda consumption is linked to osteoporosis. Soda drinking has been associated with lower bone mineral density in women and children. The phosphorus content of colas triggers calcium loss leading to osteoporosis.
8. Drinking cola can increase your risk of kidney stones. A study published in Epidemiology found that “Drinking 2 or more colas per day was associated with increased risk of chronic kidney disease.”
9. Soda can cause heartburn. It shouldn’t surprise you that highly acidic sodas can lead to heartburn.
10. It’s linked with liver problems. A study found that people with liver problems are also more likely to drink soda.
11. Your soda likely either contains aspartame or high fructose corn syrup. If you drink diet soda, your pop has some sort of artificial sweetener. If you drink full-calorie soda, chances are it has high fructose corn syrup. There are long debates about these ingredients and studies are not entirely conclusive, but both ingredients are artificial and are likely not good for you.
Financial Reasons to Stop Drinking Soda
If saving money motivates you to kick a bad habit, here are the top three financial reasons to quit drinking soda.
12. The out of pocket cost of drinking pop adds up. The average American drinks 216 liters (that’s 7304 ounces, or about 365 20-ounce bottles) a year. If you purchased your soda only at a vending machine, that’s about $550/ year. If, instead, you put this into a retirement account for 30 years at a 7% interest rate compounded annually, you’d have about $60,000. Even if you buy your soda at the grocery store for 40 cents a can, that’s still $243 per year and over $26,000 over 30 years.
13. You’ll make poorer financial decisions by drinking diet soda. A research study looking at decision making after drinking soda found that “The sugar-free soda drinkers were more likely to choose the immediate reward, even though it was less money and not the best overall decision.
14. The long term health consequences lead to high medical expenses. I’ve listed numerous health reasons to not drink soda pop below — if you have even one of these health problems because of (or it’s exacerbated by) drinking soda, your long-term medical costs will skyrocket.”
Don’t count yourselves out my soda lovin’ Mamas! You can do this and you will get HUGE rewards by making this change! Just one soda a day equals 20 lbs of fat a year!…..And, I heard the nutritionist for the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders tell them that carbonation causes cellulite!! AHHH!! I am not saying that is true….but just the thought is reason enough for me right there!! Soda has a huge amount of sugar and your body will not burn your stored fat until it burns through all that sugar you are drinking! The less soda you drink, the less you will crave it. I can attest to that!