The Ugly Truth about Sugar-Free Sodas

truth behind sugar free sodaPoway and Rancho Bernardo, CA

Sugar-free sodas have been a thing for decades. Claiming to help you keep the pounds off that you otherwise might gain from downing too many sugar-filled drinks each day, these beverages can be found in many homes across America. But, are sugar-free sodas actually better for your health than the regular kind? Dr. Nicol Cook, a dentist in Poway, is here to share the ugly truths about sugar-free sodas and why you might want to find another favorite beverage.

A regular bottle of soda contains as many as 200 calories, but a diet soda, only one calorie! Simple logic would tell you that diet soda is the healthier choice. But is it?

A study conducted by Imperial College in London proves otherwise stating that sugar-free sodas are no better for your health than regular sodas. In fact, sugar-free sodas may actually cause more weight gain over time, according to a U.S. study conducted by the American Journal of Public Health. This study showed that 11% of participants who were at a healthy weight, 19% were overweight, and 22% that were obese drank diet sodas. As if that evidence weren’t enough, a study in the journal Obesity followed 3,700 people for eight years and determined that those who drank diet soda gained the most weight. This makes a lot of sense since most people think having saved calories in one manner means that they can consume that slice of pie after a meal.

As you can see, diet sodas aren’t really all they are cracked up to be. While they may be ok to consume for short-term weight loss, or when transitioning to give up sodas completely, they aren’t the best choice if you want to get that weight off and keep it off for good.

But, what does all of this have to do with your teeth?

Soda is soda, whether sugar-laden or sugar-free. Even sugar-free sodas are bad for your teeth, too. Sodas, sugar-free or not, are highly acidic, which can erode dental enamel – the protective coating on the outside of your teeth. Enamel erosion can pose serious oral health consequences, such as increased tooth sensitivity, and make your teeth more susceptible to developing cavities and gum disease.

What should you drink instead?

If you want to protect your teeth and help keep the pounds off, it’s best to stick with water. It neutralizes the pH in your mouth, which helps reduce the amount of acidic plaque on your teeth. While water may taste rather bland and boring to a lot of people, you can enjoy other flavored beverages from time to time. Just do so sparingly, and don’t sip on sugary drinks throughout the day. Just have one and be done. And, be sure to rinse out your mouth afterward if you aren’t able to brush your teeth.

If you would like to learn more ways to protect your oral health, just call (858) 673-0141 or contact Smiles by Dr. Cook today. We welcome patients of Poway and Rancho Bernardo in California.

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