As the weather turns warm, people often start drinking more cold drinks including , which many feel is a healthy choice compared to high-fructose corn syrup laden, sugary sodas.  Unfortunately, is not a healthy choice at all.  

Here is a link interpreting a recent study in the journal Diabetes Care cautioning soda drinkers that zero calories does not necessarily mean healthy. The study found “at least daily consumption of diet soda was associated with a 36% greater relative risk of incident metabolic syndrome and a 67% greater relative risk of incident type 2 compared with nonconsumption.”

Correlation is not necessarily causation, but this study warrants further studies to examine this link. Naturopaths recommend to their patients to drink plenty of pure water and herbal teas rather than any kind of soda pop, with or without sugar, for this reason and also because of the high phosphorus content in dark soda pop increasing osteoporosis risk.  

The link at the beginning of this post gives some excellent advice on how to stay healthy and prevent metabolic syndrome and/or diabetes.  The gist of it is what I always tell my patients: Maintain a healthy weight, lose weight if overweight, exercise regularly, eat moderate amounts of food and choose veggies, fruits, whole grains and lean protein.  Drink lots of pure water and make slow, gradual lifestyle changes so that you can stick to them for the long term. Visit with a naturopathic doctor for more advice if you have diabetes, metabolic syndrome or need help with healthy, sustainable .  

Green tea and lemonade made with water, fresh squeezed or bottled lemon juice and a pinch of as a sweetener are great alternatives to soda pop on a hot summer day.  We made a batch of lemonade today to take down to the river with some snacks for after our swim and the kids drank it all before we even made it out the door!  

Margaret Philhower, ND