Are Diet Sodas OK?

I had recently heard that diet drinks inhibit you from losing weight, and was skeptical. So, I googled it and found several articles to support this… here’s just one. It does make sense. I don’t drink that many myself, but seem to have been lately because it’s been so hot in the south. I just might have to give it a try to go without and see if I lose weight!

(CBS) For many people there’s only one real reason to drink diet soda.

“Because it’s got no calories and, yeah, you try to watch your weight,” says Raymond Tomczak.

But, as The Early Show medical correspondent Dr. Emily Senay reports, some experts are now saying diet soda may be doing the exact opposite: making them gain weight.

Epidemiologist Sharon Fowler, from the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, presented research data on soda consumption to the American Diabetes Association.

“What we saw was that the more diet sodas a person drinks, the more weight they were likely to gain,” she says.

That finding was a big surprise, but it reflected what nutritionist Melainie Rogers saw in her work with obese patients in New York.

“When we would switch them on to diet soda off regular soda, we weren’t seeing weight loss necessarily, and that was confusing to us,” Rogers says.

But why would diet soda make some people gain weight? There are only theories at this point but it may be as simple as people consciously eating more because they think they can.

Khristianne Corro says, “If I’m having one of those pig out days, then yeah, I figure maybe it’ll balance it out a little bit.”

And Tomczak says, “I’m drinking the diet soda and you know let me have that hamburger and fries, instead of just the hamburger alone.”

Researchers say physiology may also play a role.

“When I put anything to my stomach that’s not water then my stomach responds by increasing the gastric acid secretion,” Fowler says. “Does that increase my sense of hunger and does that drive me to eat more?”

If diet soda really doesn’t take the weight off, it wouldn’t be the first time a diet product failed to perform as expected.

“You know, much the same as when we went through the fat free craze, people overate – not because there was anything wrong with the products, but they overate,” says Rogers, the nutritionist. “So we’re wondering are we seeing a similar phenomenon with the diet soda.”

There are still plenty of questions that researchers need to answer. For instance, are these results associated with all artificial sweeteners? Or just certain ones?

And of course, it’s all just a theory until larger controlled studies can be done, but the early findings are fascinating.

In the meantime, there are alternatives for people who are trying to lose weight.

There’s juice and water or coffee and tea. Dr. Senay says the one thing to take away from this is moderation. Whatever you put in your mouth, don’t overdo it. A diet product won’t really help you lose weight if you’re still getting too many calories from other foods.

Cindy-
I drink a diet soda maybe once or twice a week! I drink more diet tea. I haven’t gained weight but everyone is different. You said you live in the South??? have you tried powerade Zero??? they have 3 different flavors and it’s better than drinking pop in the heat…:slight_smile:

It is total calories plus how to burn it,and moderation is the rule not to gain weight.
But soft drinks are high in phosphate which triggers high parathroid hormone production,which has bad effect on the bone.
Juice is as bad( lots of calories,fresh fruits are better,and juice is full of fructose ) . So back to water which is very natural when we feel thirsty.Cold icy water in the heat is best drink…

I am mainly a water and unsweetened tea kind of guy. I do, however, drink diet sodas semi often these days. I have had no problems losing weight. I am almost at 35 lbs lost as of November 2007. Of course I ride a bike often and walk when I’m not riding!

I stopped drinking diet sodas as a way to save money. Occasionally I will give in and have one. Since I had been drinking water or water flavored with Crystal light I have not seen any change in weight. Good luck. If it helps you lose then it can’t be a bad thing.

I used to drink alot of diet pop. Probably a case every couple days. Then a concerned friend show me a few videos on youtube which scared me pretty bad! After asking my doctor about aspartame, I made the decision to stop drinking diet soda and using aspartame in coffee. You should see this!

I think a big key to being healthy is moderation. An occasional diet soda is not going to hurt, as long as it’s not taking the place of the drinks you need to consume.

I have a friend at work who has been telling me constantly that Coke Zero is the enemy…even though I LOVE it! She said that the artificial sweetner actually increases your appetite. Maybe there is something to this…