Is Diet Right?

Diet drinks don’t necessarily help with weight loss. Though they don’t have sugars that erode teeth, the acids they contain can cause dental decay. One diet drink a day is not anything to worry about. But if you regularly drink much more than that, consider cutting back. Over time you can retrain your habits and taste buds to put Water First.

Since diet drinks have almost no calories you’d think they would be helpful in weight loss. But that’s not always the case. While some studies show that drinking diet beverages helps with short-term weight loss, an equal number suggest they don’t. As Dr David Katz of Oprah.com says, “My concern is that artificial sweeteners are 200 to 13,000 times as sweet as sugar, and that is a potent stimulus for turning a sweet tooth into a fang. Other research suggests that the taste of sweetness is mildly addictive—the more you eat, the more you need to feel fully satisfied. If artificially sweetened sodas increase your cravings, the calories they take out of your diet are apt to sneak back in later when you, for instance, need a larger or sweeter dessert to feel satisfied.”

For people who drink a lot of regular soda, substituting diet drinks is a step in the right direction and some studies show that this switch can lead to weight loss in those people. But don’t stop there; take the next step to the water cooler.

Though diet drinks don’t contain high fructose corn syrup that causes tooth decay, they do have the same acids regular sodas have that erode tooth enamel. Also high regular and diet soft drink intake can contribute to osteoporosis as these drinks displace calcium-rich milk and their high phosphorus levels lower calcium absorption.