Soda, our Health and our World

Soda, our Health and our World

According to the National Soft Drink Association, consumption of soda has been on a slow decline over the past five years. Frankly, if soda was eliminated it would contribute greatly to better health among Americans. But I’m sure that will never become a reality and I shouldn’t inject my personal feelings into reasons why we shouldn’t drink soda. But I venture to say that consuming it does more harm than good. For many, soda is more than just a drink to quench one’s thirst, but it teeters on a scale towards an addiction. Let’s look at an example. Real names have been left out to protect the innocent.

A young man in his early 20s consumes about three Pepsis a day. Now this is a young man who’s physically fit, works out frequently, is of sound body and mind, and seems to be in good health. But with closer observation, I’m sure, matter of fact, positive that his sugar levels are out of control. Now I’m no health expert, but I do think that it’s important that we take a look at ourselves and always find ways to improve.

It is fact that soda contains high levels of sugars and all sorts of mystery ingredients that can be harmful to any diet. So here’s a little breakdown of what you’re consuming if you’re a Pepsi lover…like our friend mentioned above:

  • 250 calories
  • 0 grams of total fat
  • 55 mg of sodium
  • 69 g of total carbohydrates
  • 69 g of sugar
  • No protein

These numbers are based on a 20 oz bottle and include the following ingredients: carbonated water, high fructose corn syrup, caramel color, sugar, phosphoric acid, caffeine, citric acid and “natural flavor.”

First of all, what is natural about soda? Maybe I’m a bit biased because I’m not a huge soda drinker, though I do “treat” myself on occasion. But the reality is, while soda may not be extremely harmful to your body it doesn’t do any good.

There have been multiple studies that show soda playing a role in health disadvantages. Type 2 diabetes, obesity, tooth decay and I’m sure there are others I’m leaving out. Recently there have been federal measures to remove soft drinks from public schools citing health risks.

It’s important, though, to remember that moderation is key. And for those whose body has built up a certain tolerance and unconscious need for caffeine, slowly decreasing your intake probably works best. But I’m no doctor, so it’s best to consult professional health advice if you plan to make any significant changes to your diet.

And let’s not forget how reducing soda consumption can save our environment. Recycling has become a part of many folks’ every day routines, but if we’re drinking less, that means fewer cans and fewer bottles. Let’s face it, there are still some who choose to litter our streets and rivers and so forth. I witnessed someone tossing a bottle out of their sunroof on the freeway. All it takes is just a little TLC. We can clean our bodies and our earth in one fell swoop.

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Comments

  1. I totally agree soda is not a healthy choice whatsoever, I mean there are worse things you can put in your body but why even go there? I would also venture to say that the lower economic status a population is the more likely they are to consume soda as well as highly processed food versus juices and fruits and veggies, part of the issue honestly is the lack of education, so thanks for this great article…hope it reaches the masses quickly 🙂

  2. Good piece. NY just banned sodas. Well, technically, now restaurants and certain vendors are not allowed to provide them as oversized drinks thanks to Bloomberg. Soda’s link to obesity is what got NY reacting. Hopefully others will follow this trend (but this is America and we’re free to do as we please even if it’s harmful to us).

  3. Susie, your comment on the link between economic status and soda consumption is spot on. As Wunmi said, I think it’s wise that the government step in and take initiative to aid in national health.

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