Though it is not an ideal choice, still you may feel that Diet Coke is better in comparison to classic Coca-Cola. There is no sugar, calories or carbohydrates present in Diet Coke, whereas 39 g of sugar and 140 calories are present in a 12-oz can of normal Coke. However, certain ingredients are present in Diet Coke, which may cause adverse effects on your health, particularly when it is ingested in large amounts.
Diet Coke Side Effects
- It affects functioning of kidneys: Kidneys play an important role in removing harmful toxins from the body and detoxifying your blood. It also helps to maintain proper pH level of your body. Diet Coke’s pH is 2.51; hence, it is acidic in nature. If ingested in large amounts, Diet Coke can cause kidney problems such as kidney stones (they occur when excessive minerals and acids are present in your urine). The functioning of your kidneys can decline, if you consume greater than two Diet Coke cans in a day.
- Risk of cardiovascular disease is increased: A close link exists between heart disease and ingestion of Diet Coke. According to a study, consumption of greater than two Diet Coke cans in a day may increase the risk of developing a cardiovascular problem by 30% and heart disease by 50%.
- It triggers obesity: You drink Diet Coke in place of regular soda to restrict your calorie intake and lose weight. However, drinking excessive amount of Diet Coke may trigger obesity, instead of helping you lose weight despite having no sugar and calories. This occurs because it has artificial sweeteners which affect the metabolism of the body. Moreover, you tend to crave foods and overeat after consuming a can of Diet Coke, which makes you obese or overweight.
- It increases the levels of cholesterol: An increased blood level of cholesterol is another of the major Diet Coke side effects. The risk of developing stroke and heart disease is increased by having higher than normal levels of LDL cholesterol (bad cholesterol).
- It can trigger type 2 diabetes: Drinking greater than two cans of Diet Coke every day can increase your risk of developing type 2diabetes. Diet Coke or any other no calorie drink makes you hungrier. Due to this, you crave food or snacks after consuming Diet Coke. Moreover, the artificial sweeteners present in Diet Coke may affect the good bacteria in your intestine and cause diabetes.
- It causes dehydration: If you are feeling thirsty, Diet Coke should not be your choice of beverage to quench your thirst. It contains caffeine as one of the ingredients, which is a diuretic and causes dehydration. The symptoms of dehydration are dizziness, headache, increased heart rate, seizures and even death. Hence, it is advised that you drink water or herbal tea instead of diet coke to quench your thirst.
- It leads to hypertension: Another of the diet coke side effects is an increased risk of developing high blood pressure. The link can’t be explained but it could be due to the fact that diet coke consumption leads to obesity which can cause increased blood pressure. Moreover, diet coke contains large quantities of sodium (57 mg in a 12 oz can), which can also lead to high blood pressure.
- It leads to uncomfortable hangover: An uncomfortable hangover is another side effect of addiction to diet coke. If you combine cocktails with diet coke, you may feel drunker and have an unpleasant feeling the next day.
- It causes damage to body cells: Preservative chemicals such as sodium benzoate or potassium benzoate are present in diet coke, which can severely inactivate and damage DNA of the body cells. These chemicals may also cause hives, asthma and other types of allergic conditions.
- It destroys your teeth: As already mentioned, diet coke is acidic in nature; hence, it can damage your teeth by dissolving tooth enamel. If you drink greater than three cans of diet coke a day, then you are more at risk of getting tooth decay, missing teeth and a filling.
- It causes issues with reproduction: Another of the diet coke side effects is reproductive issues. A chemical called bisphenol A (BPA) is present in diet coke, which is an endocrine disruptor and causes reproductive issues and infertility.
- It causes tension headaches: Caffeine and aspartame present in diet coke increases the risk of development of a debilitating tension headache.
- It affects digestion: Diet coke may worsen your already present digestive issues. Moreover, the phosphoric acid present in diet coke may lead to irritation of the lining of the mouth, throat and esophagus. Diet coke also reduces the production of stomach acid, thereby, affecting digestion.
- It causes depression and stress: If you consume diet coke regularly, you may suffer from symptoms of stress, depression and mood changes as side effects. A close link exists between the aspartame present in diet coke and mood disorders. Regularly consuming aspartame may lead to symptoms of fatigue, nausea, memory loss, insomnia, headaches and depression.
- It weakens your bones: Another diet coke side effect is that it increases the risk of developing osteoporosis and weakens your bones. Artificial sweeteners present in diet coke may affect absorption of vitamin D and calcium in your body, which play an important role in bone strengthening.
How to Stop Drinking Diet Coke?
Considering all the side effects, you may want to quit diet coke. Follow these steps to make it.
- Record the amount of diet coke you drink currently in a given day. Keeping a record helps you to determine your daily ration of coke when you begin the process of weaning.
- Put exact number of diet coke cans that you require for a day in the refrigerator, minus one. For instance, if you drink six 12 oz cans of diet coke per day normally, then keep five cans in the refrigerator.
- Drink the cans you have set aside all through the day. When you have finished all your cans, do not drink more on that day. Replace each diet coke can with a beverage that is noncarbonated such as water.
- After one week (while you are drinking 5 cans per day), decrease the number of cans to four a day and do so for one more week.
- Continue to reduce the number of cans every week until you reach to zero.
- Eat a big breakfast: Breakfast should never be skipped anyway; however, when you are trying to quit diet soda you will be required to eat a substantial breakfast to provide energy and stabilize your blood sugar. You can choose eggs as a breakfast option.
- Find a healthier alternative: A great method to quit diet coke is to find a healthier alternative. For instance, if you desire diet coke due to its sweetness, you can replace it with fresh orange juice. Whenever you have a craving to drink diet coke, drink the replacement.