Whether you call it soda or pop, there’s no denying how popular such drinks are in the states. In fact, soda is the third most popular drink in the U.S., following coffee and bottled water. Almost everyone has a favorite soda brand that they’re chugging on a daily basis. However, even good things can be harmful in excess, and soda is, unfortunately, the same. As you age, you may need to stop drinking soda as often as you used to, and here’s why.
No Nutritional Value
As good as soda tastes, it’s disappointing to learn that soda has basically zero nutritional value. Most sodas contain no essential nutrients, meaning that they provide neither vitamins, minerals, nor fiber. Instead, sodas are loaded with sugar, which offers nothing if you’re planning on engaging in a healthy diet, which most older adults should be. Consuming excess sugars can be extremely problematic for older adults. For example, high sugar consumption can elevate your blood pressure, as well as lead to you entering a pre-diabetic state. Hence, many medical professionals often advise their elderly patients to cut down on their consumption of sugary foods and beverages, including sodas.
Can Cause Insulin Resistance
Soda can make the cells in your body less sensitive to the effects of insulin, which is the key hormone to your body’s metabolism. Insulin helps to regulate your body’s blood sugar levels, breaking down carbs into energy. When your body becomes desensitized to insulin, this can lead to you developing insulin resistance. Insulin resistance leads to your muscles, fat, and liver not responding effectively to insulin, and not being able to properly use the glucose from your blood to generate energy. Thus, your blood sugar levels will start to rise, and it can easily progress into Type 2 diabetes, stroke, and other health issues.
Turns into Fat in Your Liver
The relationship between sodas and fatty liver disease is well-documented, showing how harmful sodas can be to your liver’s health. Sucrose, which is almost always found in sodas, can only be metabolized by your liver. When your liver is overwhelmed by the excess of sugars, it then turns the sugars into fat, which is a leading contributor to nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. Hence, people who drink sodas often have been noted to be more likely to suffer from nonalcoholic fatty liver disease.
Does Not Sate Your Appetite
Fructose is found in high quantities in soda, which can be problematic for your weight. No matter how much fructose you consume, it doesn’t lower the ghrelin levels in your body. Ghrelin is the hormone that triggers and controls hunger and stimulates fullness when your body is digesting starchy foods. On the other hand, because of how fructose interacts with ghrelin, you’re more likely to gain unhealthy weight when you drink sodas.
Can Be Addictive
Due to its high sugar content, soda can be dangerously addictive. While soda isn’t nutritionally beneficial in the slightest, the processed sugars it contains can tamper with your brain like how hard drugs do.
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