Soft drinks – okay or not?
Cola Light, Pepsi Max, Sprite Zero… Dear children have many names. The sugar-free light soda broke through like a bomb in the 1980s and has since been the subject of discussion among dietitians as well as researchers and sugar lovers. So how is it really?
Two of the most common sweeteners today are aspartame and acesulfame-K. Both are made chemically and these are the substances that create sweetness in popular soft drinks such as Cola Zero and Pepsi Max.
No calories – no danger?
Aspartame and acesulfame-K are about 200 times sweeter than sugar, which means that it takes very little to make the drink sweet. This means that soft drinks are in principle completely free of calories and are therefore emphasized as a healthier alternative to regular soft drinks. However, this is a truth with modification. For what exactly are calories? Well, it is the energy we get in us from what we put in our mouths and also what makes us full. Calories in themselves are absolutely not dangerous, on the contrary, it is what makes us strong and functional! It is when the intake becomes far too high that it can be dangerous to health. The tricky thing about soft drinks is that it gives us the good sweet taste, but not the calories or the feeling of satiety – on the contrary, it seems to trigger our hunger.
Disputed subject matter
Much research has been done on exactly how the sweeteners affect our bodies and there is still disagreement. Some believe that aspartame and acesulfame-K are completely harmless, while others do not dare to speak out so confidently. Recent studies have shown that the sweet taste in combination with the empty calories in some cases creates increased hunger and increased cravings for sweets. Recent research has also shown that sweeteners at high consumption can affect the intestinal flora and raise blood sugar.
Sugar or sweeteners?
Just as sugar itself is not dangerous are sweeteners not dangerous in themselves. Neither soft drinks nor soft drinks will affect the body negatively if you drink it from time to time. It is the long-term consumption that is questionable. If you have a strong sugar craving, soft drinks are not very suitable as an everyday drink, regardless of whether they contain sugar or sweeteners, as there is a risk that the sweet craving will be maintained and worsened.
Try saving the soft drink for the weekend, so you can enjoy a little extra while reducing your daily sugar cravings!