Diet Soda And Diabetes: Things To Consider
Diabetes is a condition characterized by high amounts of sugar in the blood. These high blood sugar levels are a result of the body's inability to either produce or use a hormone called insulin. Insulin's role is to move sugar from the blood and into the cells of the body where it is used to make energy. Contents of this article: Sugary sodas and diabetes Diabetes is marked by high blood sugar, known medically as hyperglycemia. As such, drinks which have a lot of sugar in them should be avoided as they cause spikes in blood sugar. There are three major types of diabetes: Type 1 diabetes In type 1 diabetes, the body does not produce insulin. The immune system attacks the cells in the pancreas that produce insulin. There is no direct cause of type 1 diabetes. Factors that can increase the risk of type 1 diabetes include: Drinking cow's milk at an early age may also play a role in type 1 diabetes. Type 2 diabetes Type 2 diabetes is the most common form of diabetes. The body is unable to use insulin fully or make enough of it to keep up with sugar intake. Type 2 diabetes shows links to: Inactivity Genes Age Family history of type 2 diabetes Gestational diabetes Gestational diabetes affects women during pregnancy. If the body cannot make enough insulin to carry the sugar to cells to be used or if there is insulin resistance present, the woman may be diagnosed with gestational diabetes. One recent study posted in the BMJ found a link between drinking sugary drinks and the risk of type two diabetes. Another study posted in Diabetes Care found that people who drink 1-2 sugar-sweetened drinks every day have a 26 percent greater risk of developing type 2 diabetes than those who do not. Other things to consider about sugar-sweetened sodas: Plaque loves soda: The bacteria that make Continue reading >>
Will Diet Coke Raise Blood Sugar Levels Up In Diabetics?
People with diabetes often switch to sugar-free products if they want to indulge a craving. For example, they might try sugar-free cookies or diet products that are made especially for diabetics or contain no added sugars. Based on that concept, switching to drinking Diet Coke might seem like the best choice. However, diabetics need to consider certain things before trying diet sodas. Video of the Day Diet Coke contains two sweeteners: aspartame and acesulfame-K, also known as acesulfame potassium. Diet Coke also contains artificial colorings and flavorings that have no effect on blood sugar. Blood Sugar Reactions Both sweeteners used in Diet Coke are considered safe for diabetes, according to Mayo Clinic. However, while the artificial sweeteners won’t raise blood sugar, the caffeine in it might. A 2004 study led by researchers at Duke University showed that caffeine consumption can increase blood sugar levels by up to 8 percent. Scientists are not sure why caffeine has this effect on glucose but are still recommending diabetic patients cut down their caffeine consumption as much as possible. Although the sweeteners in Diet Coke don’t directly affect blood sugar levels, they can still lead to other problems. According to the Harvard School of Public Health, the sweet taste of Diet Coke can confuse your brain. In normal circumstances, sweet foods have lots of calories. When you drink diet soda, your brain is expecting you to consume calories. When you don’t, your hunger will increase, forcing you to eat more to make up for the calories your brain is expecting. The cravings for extra food can be cravings for carbohydrates as well, which would affect your blood sugar. So indirectly, Diet Coke can affect your glucose if you don’t pay attention and give in to the cra Continue reading >>
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The Best And Worst Drinks For Diabetics
Drinks for Diabetics iStock When you have diabetes, choosing the right drink isn’t always simple. And recent studies may only add to the confusion. Is coffee helpful or harmful to insulin resistance? Does zero-calorie diet soda cause weight gain? We reviewed the research and then asked three top registered dietitians, who are also certified diabetes educators, what they tell their clients about seven everyday drinks. Here’s what to know before you sip. Drink More: Water iStock Could a few refreshing glasses of water assist with blood sugar control? A recent study in the journal Diabetes Care suggests so: The researchers found that people who drank 16 ounces or less of water a day (two cups’ worth) were 30 percent more likely to have high blood sugar than those who drank more than that daily. The connection seems to be a hormone called vasopressin, which helps the body regulate hydration. Vasopressin levels increase when a person is dehydrated, which prompts the liver to produce more blood sugar. How much: Experts recommend six to nine 8-ounce glasses of water per day for women and slightly more for men. You’ll get some of this precious fluid from fruit and vegetables and other fluids, but not all of it. “If you’re not in the water habit, have a glass before each meal,” recommends Constance Brown-Riggs, MSEd, RD, CDE, CDN, a spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and author of The African American Guide to Living Well with Diabetes. “After a few weeks, add a glass at meals too.” Drink More: Milk iStock Moo juice isn’t just a kids’ drink. It provides the calcium, magnesium, potassium, and vitamin D your body needs for many essential functions. Plus, research shows it may also boost weight loss. In one study of 322 people trying to sl Continue reading >>
What’s Better For You, Sugar-laden Coca Cola Or Diet Coke? We Review The Science And Find They’re Both As Bad As Each Other
IT'S no state secret, regularly downing a full-fat Coke is not the healthiest of life choices. Armed with the info, chances are you will save a Coca Cola for treat day and opt for the diet stuff day-to-day. But when it comes to potential health complications both full-sugar and diet versions of most fizzy drinks come with a helping of risks, according to the science. And that's why health experts and dietitians recommend drinking plenty of water to quench your thirst, reserving a can of pop for the odd day when you deserve a little something naughty. Countless studies have examined the health pros and cons of sugary and diet versions. Researchers digging into the full-sugar varieties have found links with decreased brain function and memory, increased risk of diabetes and heart attack. While their colleagues focusing on the diet alternatives have, perhaps more surprisingly, found similar concerns. Diet fizzy drinks, which are artificially sweetened, have been linked to increased risk of heart attack and even excessive weight gain. And most recently a US team found that those who drink just one can of diet pop a day - such as Diet Coke - were at three times the risk of suffering a stroke as well as developing dementia. But if this isn't enough to make you put down the pop for good, here is a run down of Coca Cola versus Diet Coke, according to the scientific findings. COCA COLA In a standard 330ml can of regular "full-fat" Coke, there are 35g of sugar, which is around seven teaspoons. To put that into perspective, that is the recommended daily intake of sugar for an adult in just one can. The sugar that is taken into our body gets converted into fat and sits snugly on our waistlines if it is not burned off by adequate activity. That alone should be enough to cause concer Continue reading >>
Diet Soda May Alter Our Gut Microbes And Raise The Risk Of Diabetes
The debate over whether diet sodas are good, bad or just OK for us never seems to end. Some research suggests zero-calorie drinks can help people cut calories and fend off weight gain. But in recent years, the idea that artificial sweeteners may trick the brain and lead to "metabolic derangements," as one researcher has theorized, has gained traction, too. Now, a new study published in the journal Nature introduces a new idea: Diet sodas may alter our gut microbes in a way that increases the risk of metabolic diseases such as Type 2 diabetes — at least in some of us. In the paper, researchers at the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel describe what happened when they fed zero-calorie sweeteners, including saccharin, aspartame and sucralose, to mice. "To our surprise, [the mice] developed glucose intolerance," Weizmann researcher Eran Elinav tells us. Intrigued by the findings, Elinav and his colleague Eran Segal set out to determine whether this might happen in people as well. First, they analyzed data collected from a group of about 400 people who are enrolled in an ongoing nutrition study. They found that people who were heavy consumers of artificial sweeteners had slightly elevated HbA1C levels (a long-term measure of blood sugar) — compared with people who rarely or never consumed artificial sweeteners. Next, they recruited seven volunteers — people who were not in the habit of drinking diet drinks — and asked them to start consuming the equivalent of 10-12 of those fake sugar packets during a one-week experiment. "What we find is that a subgroup [four of the seven people] developed significant disturbances in their blood glucose even after short-term exposure to artificial sweeteners," Elinav says. For example, results of a glucose tolerance test found Continue reading >>
How Does Diet Soda Affect Diabetes?
Many of us who enjoy fizzy drinks select diet soda as a healthier option than the normal soda. Even if we have with diabetes, we feel that diet soda has less sugar and is therefore not harmful to us. Sadly, that’s not entirely true. Let’s find out how does diet soda affect diabetics. Pros of Drinking Diet Soda with Diabetes: Diet soda contains artificial sweeteners, which are also referred to as non-nutritive sweeteners (NNS) or non-caloric sweeteners. They have a higher intensity of sweetness per gram than caloric sweeteners like sucrose. Popular artificial sweeteners like aspartame, acesulfame-K, neotame, saccharin, and sucralose are regulated as food additives by the US Food and Drug Administration (USFDA). Aspartame and saccharin, commonly found in diet sodas, are both FDA reviewed and approved. Besides FDA, most sweeteners used in diet sodas are approved by World Health Organization (WHO) and/ or Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI). The American Diabetes Association (ADA) lists diet soda as safe for diabetics to consume. Diet soda is typically sweetened with one of five artificial sweeteners. These sweeteners do not contain calories (or have less than 20 calories), and the ADA reports that they do not cause a blood glucose reaction. Furthermore, carbohydrate content in diet soda is less (less than 5 gm) when compared to that of regular soda. Also, the calorie content in diet soda is less than that of regular soda. Risks Of Diet Soda For Diabetics According to Mayo Clinic, a nonprofit medical practice and medical research group based in Rochester, Minnesota, while the artificial sweeteners may not raise blood sugar, the caffeine in it might. A 2004 study at Duke University showed that caffeine consumption can increase blood sugar levels by up to Continue reading >>
Diet Soda And Insulin Spikes
Dear Alice, I have heard that the main reason why diet drinks, like a diet soda, can be bad on a diet, is that it can spike insulin levels and then your body expects sugar that it does not get. I have taken to the habit of only occasionally having diet drinks with meals, so that any increase in insulin is actually met with food in my system. My question is whether or not this is a good/workable strategy, or whether a diet soda is a diet soda no matter when you drink it and is therefore always a bad idea. Thank you for your time. Dear Reader, It doesn’t seem like there’s a short and sweet answer to your inquiry. Unfortunately, scientists still don’t fully understand the influence of artificial sweeteners on the body’s blood sugar and insulin responses. But, here’s the skinny on pairing a meal with your diet soda: the evidence that connects artificial sweeteners to “insulin spiking” is limited. In vitro studies (a.k.a., test-tube studies of cells living outside the body) have shown that cells release more insulin when exposed to some artificial sweeteners. Increased insulin signals a cell to store more energy as fat (rather than use it as fuel), so this might partially explain the correlation between weight gain and artificial sweeteners. However, much more research on this is still needed, so it’s difficult to say if eating a meal with your diet soda makes a difference either way. Reader, you also mention you’ve heard that drinking diet soda might make your body expect sugar when it’s really getting a calorie-free substitute. Although studies on humans show mixed results, researchers think that it could be a possibility because this is generally true in rats — animals predict the calorie content of a food based on how sweet it tastes (and fun fact: Continue reading >>
Is Diet Soda Safe For Diabetes?
Managing blood sugar levels is an everyday goal for people with type 1 and type 2 diabetes. While eating sugar doesn’t cause either type of diabetes, keeping tabs on carbohydrate and sugar intake is an important part of managing both types of diabetes. Eating healthfully can also reduce your risk for developing type 2 diabetes. Being overweight or obese is linked to the development of type 2 diabetes. In fact, obesity is one of the leading causes of type 2 diabetes. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than one-third of American adults are considered obese. Obesity puts you at risk for diabetes, as well as other troublesome conditions. Eating processed foods that are high in sugar, unhealthy fats, and empty calories increases your risk of gaining too much weight. Drinking sugary drinks is also a risk factor for developing type 2 diabetes. If you are working to keep your blood sugar in check or manage your weight, you might choose diet soda. Low in calories and sugar, diet sodas appear to be a good alternative to sugary drinks. Diet coke and A&W’s diet root beer, for example, claim to be entirely sugar-free. Unfortunately, even though they contain no actual sugar, they are loaded with artificial sweeteners and other unhealthy additives. At one time, there was much debate over the safety of artificial sweeteners. Many feared that these sweeteners caused certain types of cancer. Studies performed in the 1970s suggested that the artificial sweetener saccharin was linked to bladder cancer. Since that time, however, saccharin has been deemed safe. Both the National Cancer Institute and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) consider the sweetener nontoxic. Aspartame, another common yet controversial sweetener, has also gained clearance fo Continue reading >>
7 Foods That Spike Blood Sugar
1 / 8 7 Foods That Spike Blood Sugar If you have type 2 diabetes, you know about the importance of making healthy mealtime choices. But just as important is staying away from the wrong foods — those that can spike your blood sugar. That's because simple carbohydrates, like white bread and sugary soda, are broken down by the body into sugar, which then enters the bloodstream. Even if you don't have diabetes, these foods can lead to insulin resistance, which means your body's cells don't respond normally to the insulin produced by the pancreas. Here are seven foods you should avoid for better blood sugar control. Continue reading >>
What Everyone Must Know About Coke Zero And Diabetes
If you have diabetes you may be thinking quitting your regular Coke and opting for Coke Zero is going to do you a big favor. After all, it's sugar free and therefore healthier, right? Wrong! Once you read this, you'll understand that the scientific research shows quite the opposite. What is Coke Zero? Coke Zero was launched in 2005 as a sugar free, low calorie alternative to regular coke. One thing that's quite funny is that while Diet Coke has been around since the 1980’s, many men thought the title “diet” sounded a little too feminine and they weren’t interested in buying it. So as a result, Coke Zero was born. It was marketed mostly towards men who wanted to enjoy the taste of a classic Coke with zero guilt. Coke Zero comes in several different flavors, including classic, vanilla, and cherry. You might be thinking that a sugar free soda sounds too good to be true. And you would be right! Unfortunately, Coke Zero and other sugar free sodas are not a soda lover’s dream come true. And you'll soon see why… Nutrition Facts You probably already know that regular soda has a ton of sugar in it, which means you should steer clear of it at all costs – diabetic or not. For example, a 12 ounce can of regular Coke contains 39 grams of sugar, all derived from high fructose corn syrup, which makes that a double no, no. That can of soda also packs 140 empty calories – meaning, you don’t get any nutrients from it. It’s easy to see why so many people were thrilled when diet sodas hit the market. After all, the promise of cutting down on sugar to lose weight, and reduce your risk of obesity and diabetes – that sounds like a good deal, right? Well, unfortunately those promises aren't all they're cracked up to be. The sweetener in Diet Coke is called ‘aspartame,' Continue reading >>
Does Drinking Soda Really Give You Diabetes?
Chugging too much soda won’t just give you a gut: Soda might also raise your risk of developing prediabetes as well, a new study published in The Journal of Nutrition suggests. In a study of over 1,600 people, those who drank regular soda more than 3 times a week were 46 percent more likely to develop prediabetes—a disease where your blood sugar is elevated, but not quite at the diabetes threshold—over a 14-year period than those who didn’t drink any of the beverage. Even just one 12-ounce can of soda more than three times a week is enough to raise your health risk. This link between soda and prediabetes persisted even after the researchers adjusted for potential factors that may be skewing the relationship, like calorie consumption, physical activity levels, and body mass indexes (BMI). (Here are 15 ways to cut hundreds of calories a day.) One possible reason is that the sugar content of regular soda may overwhelm the drinker’s system with excess glucose and fructose, says lead study author Nicola McKeown, Ph.D., of Tufts University. The extra sugar rush raises the amount of sugar in your body in the short-term. But it can also mess with your system long-term, by changing the way the pancreas releases insulin, a hormone that allows your body to absorb glucose for energy. As a result, you can develop insulin resistance, a condition where your body needs higher and higher amounts of insulin to function, says McKeown. When your body can’t churn out enough insulin to keep up with that demand, the glucose builds up in your blood, and you can develop prediabetes, and eventually diabetes. Diet soda, on the other hand, doesn’t contain sugar, which may be why the study saw no link between the consumption of that kind of soft drink and prediabetes risk. (Still, oth Continue reading >>
Study: Diet Soda May Do More Harm Than Good
Diet soda drinkers have the same health issues as those who drink regular soda, according to a new report published Wednesday. Purdue University researchers reviewed a dozen studies published in past five years that examined the relationship between consuming diet soda and health outcomes. They then published an opinion piece on their findings in the journal Trends in Endocrinology & Metabolism, saying they were “shocked” by the results. "Honestly, I thought that diet soda would be marginally better compared to regular soda in terms of health," said Susan Swithers, the report's author and a behavioral neuroscientist and professor of psychological sciences. “But in reality it has a counterintuitive effect.” Artificial sweeteners in diet soda fulfill a person’s craving for a sweet taste, without the calories. But that's the problem, according to researchers. Think of it like crying wolf. The fake sugar in diet sodas teases your body by pretending to give it real food. But when your body doesn't get the things it expects to get, it becomes confused on how to respond. While the studies they reviewed only looked at diet soft drinks, the researchers suggest that this could apply to other products that contain artificial sweeteners as well. "You've messed up the whole system, so when you consume real sugar, your body doesn't know if it should try to process it because it's been tricked by the fake sugar so many times," says Swithers. On a physiological level, this means when diet soda drinkers consume real sugar, the body doesn’t release the hormone that regulates blood sugar and blood pressure. Diet soda drinkers also tend to pack on more pounds than those who don’t drink it, the report says. “Research shows that sweet taste can increase appetite and the regul Continue reading >>
The Science Of Why You Might Want To Kick Your Diet Soda Habit
Sheila Fitzgerald/Shutterstock Diet sodas have long been marketed as weight loss tools. The idea is that they allow people to enjoy the sweetness of regular soda, but without all the calories and weight gain. Some scientists, however, are highly skeptical that diet soft drinks, which contain artificial sweeteners, actually deliver on those marketing claims. And evidence seems is mounting that diet sodas and artificial sweeteners may actually promote weight gain. "The big controversy in this area is whether artificial sweeteners and diet beverages might be contributing to the obesity epidemic and a parallel diabetes epidemic, which is exactly what they’re supposed to help curb," explained Vasanti Malik, a Harvard researcher who has studied diet soda. A new study, published last week in PLOS, tracked users of low-calorie sweeteners in soda for 10 years and compared them with people who don’t use artificial sugar. It found that the low-calorie sweetener users were heavier, and had larger waist circumferences and more abdominal obesity than the non-users. "These data suggest that low-calorie sweetener consumption may deleteriously affect visceral fat deposition, a strong risk factor for cardiovascular disease and mortality," the researchers concluded. Another study from 2008 looked at the relationship between consumption of artificially sweetened beverages and long-term weight gain in 3,682 people. Drinking diet soda was associated with an almost doubled risk of overweight and obesity. "These findings raise the question whether artificial sweeteners use might be fueling — rather than fighting — our escalating obesity epidemic," the authors of that study wrote. Other research on diabetes has come to similarly startling conclusions. A 2015 study in the British Medical Continue reading >>
Diet Sodas Might Not Raise Diabetes Risk
(Reuters Health) - Drinking colas and other sugary drinks is tied to an increased risk of so-called pre-diabetes, a precursor to full-blown disease, but diet soda is not, a recent study suggests. Previous studies on the link between diet sodas and diabetes have been mixed; some research pointing to a potential connection has suggested this relationship may be explained at least in part by soda drinkers being overweight or obese. In the current study, however, adults who routinely consumed at least one can of soda or other sugar-sweetened beverages a day were 46 percent more likely to develop elevated blood sugar levels than people who rarely or never drink cola. “Emphasis should be placed on substituting sugar-sweetened beverages with water, unsweetened teas, or coffee,” said senior study author Nicola McKeown, a nutrition researcher at Tufts University in Boston. “For daily consumers of sugary drinks, kicking the habit may be a difficult challenge, and incorporating an occasional diet soda, while increasing fluids from other sources, may be the best strategy to ultimately remove sugar-sweetened beverages from the diet,” McKeown added by email. Globally, about one in nine adults have diabetes, and the disease will be the seventh leading cause of death by 2030, according to the World Health Organization. Most of these people have Type 2, or adult-onset, diabetes, which happens when the body can’t properly use or make enough of the hormone insulin to convert blood sugar into energy. People with blood sugar levels that are slightly elevated, but not high enough for a diabetes diagnosis, are sometimes described as having “pre-diabetes” because many will go on to develop diabetes. In the current study, researchers examined data collected on 1,685 middle-aged ad Continue reading >>
How Artificial Sweeteners Affect Blood Sugar And Insulin
Sugar is a hot topic in nutrition. Cutting back can improve your health and help you lose weight. Replacing sugar with artificial sweeteners is one way to do that. However, some people claim that artificial sweeteners aren't as "metabolically inert" as previously thought. For example, it's been claimed that they can raise blood sugar and insulin levels. This article takes a look at the science behind these claims. Artificial sweeteners are synthetic chemicals that stimulate the sweet taste receptors on the tongue. They are often called low-calorie or non-nutritive sweeteners. Artificial sweeteners give things a sweet taste, without any added calories (1). Therefore, they're often added to foods that are then marketed as "health foods" or diet products. They're found everywhere, from diet soft drinks and desserts, to microwave meals and cakes. You'll even find them in non-food items, such as chewing gum and toothpaste. Here's a list of the most common artificial sweeteners: Artificial sweeteners are synthetic chemicals that make things taste sweet without any extra calories. We have tightly controlled mechanisms to keep our blood sugar levels stable (2, 3, 4). Blood sugar levels increase when we eat foods containing carbohydrates. Potatoes, bread, pasta, cakes and sweets are some foods that are high in carbohydrates. When digested, carbohydrates are broken down into sugar and absorbed into the bloodstream, leading to an increase in blood sugar levels. When our blood sugar levels rise, our body releases insulin. Insulin is a hormone that acts like a key. It allows blood sugar to leave the blood and enter our cells, where it can be used for energy or stored as fat. If blood sugar levels drop too low, our livers release stored sugar to stabilize it. This happens when we fas Continue reading >>