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Do Diet Soft Drinks Affect Blood Sugar?

Will Diet Coke Raise Blood Sugar Levels Up In Diabetics?

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 >>

Diet Soda May Alter Our Gut Microbes And Raise The Risk Of Diabetes

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 >>

Diet Sodas And Diabetes?

Diet Sodas And Diabetes?

In the 1980s, throughout the development of sucralose (Splenda), more than 100 studies were conducted to assess its effect on human health, including its potential to impact blood glucose, or blood sugar. There was no impact. As a result, Splenda was determined safe, including for persons with diabetes, by the U.S. Federal Drug Administration, the World Health Organization, and virtually every other leading health organization worldwide. Gut sweet taste receptors But in recent years, the discovery of gut sweet taste receptors in the body have led some to question Splenda’s safety. It appears that Splenda activates these receptors. But would activating them mean anything? Would doing so raise blood sugar? The data suggest not. Clinical trials conducted since the FDA’s approval of Splenda have significantly added to the conclusion that Splenda does not affect blood sugar levels.1,2,3 But the hysteria continued. Some anti-Splenda crusaders have argued that most of the studies involved just one dose of the sugar substitute. Splenda, diet sodas, and diabetes? | New research So this year, scientists from Leicester Clinical Research Centre in the United Kingdom decided to create an air-tight case against the Splenda-phobic crowd. They conducted an impeccably-designed, randomized controlled trial4 that investigated the effect of Splenda intake three times per day for 12 weeks. The amount of Splenda consumed was pretty hefty – the equivalent of five cans of diet soda each day. Forty-seven healthy men with no personal or family histories of diabetes participated in the study. Half of the group was randomly selected to be the Splenda consumers. The other half took a placebo. The study evaluated key measures in the prevention and control of type 2 diabetes, including: HbA1c, Continue reading >>

Is Diet Soda Safe For Diabetes?

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 >>

Diet Soda And Insulin Spikes

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 >>

10 Reasons To Give Up Diet Soda

10 Reasons To Give Up Diet Soda

When taken at face value, diet soda seems like a health-conscious choice. It saves you the 140-plus calories you'd find in a sugary soft drink while still satisfying your urge for something sweet with artificial sweeteners like aspartame, saccharin, and sucralose. But there's more to this chemical cocktail than meets the eye. It confuses your body Artificial sweeteners have more intense flavor than real sugar, so over time products like diet soda dull our senses to naturally sweet foods like fruit, says Dr. Brooke Alpert, author of The Sugar Detox. Even more troubling, these sugar stand-ins have been shown to have the same effect on your body as sugar. "Artificial sweeteners trigger insulin, which sends your body into fat storage mode and leads to weight gain," Alpert says. It could lead to weight gain, not weight loss Diet soda is calorie-free, but it won't necessarily help you lose weight. Researchers from the University of Texas found that over the course of about a decade, diet soda drinkers had a 70 percent greater increase in waist circumference compared with non-drinkers. And get this: participants who slurped down two or more sodas a day experienced a 500 percent greater increase. The way artificial sweeteners confuse the body may play a part, but another reason might be psychological, says Minnesota-based dietitian Cassie Bjork. When you know you're not consuming any liquid calories, it might be easier to justify that double cheeseburger or extra slice of pizza. It's associated with an increased risk of type 2 diabetes Drinking one diet soda a day was associated with a 36 percent increased risk of metabolic syndrome and diabetes in a University of Minnesota study. Metabolic syndrome describes a cluster of conditions (including high blood pressure, elevated gluc Continue reading >>

How Artificial Sweeteners Affect Blood Sugar And Insulin

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 >>

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

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 And Diabetes: Things To Consider

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 >>

Study: Diet Soda May Do More Harm Than Good

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 >>

Research Shows Zero-calorie Sweeteners Can Raise Blood Sugar

Research Shows Zero-calorie Sweeteners Can Raise Blood Sugar

The artificial sweeteners in diet soda, yogurt and other foods consumed by millions can raise the blood sugar level instead of reducing it, according to new experiments in mice and people. The provocative finding—made possible through a new avenue of research—is likely to stoke the simmering controversy over whether artificial sweeteners help or hinder people's ability to lose weight and lower their risk of diabetes. The research shows that zero-calorie sweeteners such as saccharin, sucralose and aspartame can alter the population of bacteria in the gut and trigger unwanted changes such as higher blood glucose levels—a risk factor for diabetes. "The scope of our discovery is cause for a public reassessment of the massive and unsupervised use of artificial sweeteners," said Eran Elinav, a physician and immunologist at Israel's Weizmann Institute of Science and lead author of the study, which appeared Wednesday in the journal Nature. Though many people consume artificial sweeteners instead of sugar to control their weight, the scientific evidence that they work is mixed. Some studies have indicated that the sweeteners can help lead to weight loss, while others suggest they contribute to weight gain. One reason is that it isn't clear whether people who consume artificial sweeteners are overweight because of what they eat—or whether overweight people are the ones who typically gravitate to such products. Based on existing evidence, guidelines jointly published in 2012 by the American Heart Association and the American Diabetes Association noted that artificial sweeteners "when used judiciously…could facilitate reductions in added sugar," and thus influence weight loss. The new Nature study marks a significant advance because it brings together two separate areas o Continue reading >>

Artificial Sweeteners: Any Effect On Blood Sugar?

Artificial Sweeteners: Any Effect On Blood Sugar?

Can I use artificial sweeteners if I have diabetes? Answers from M. Regina Castro, M.D. You can use most sugar substitutes if you have diabetes, including: Saccharin (Sweet'N Low) Aspartame (NutraSweet, Equal) Acesulfame potassium (Sunett) Sucralose (Splenda) Stevia (Pure Via, Truvia) Artificial sweeteners, also called sugar substitutes, offer the sweetness of sugar without the calories. Artificial sweeteners are many times sweeter than sugar, so it takes a smaller amount to sweeten foods. This is why foods made with artificial sweeteners may have fewer calories than those made with sugar. Sugar substitutes don't affect your blood sugar level. In fact, most artificial sweeteners are considered "free foods" — foods containing less than 20 calories and 5 grams or less of carbohydrates — because they don't count as calories or carbohydrates on a diabetes exchange. Remember, however, other ingredients in foods containing artificial sweeteners can still affect your blood sugar level. More research is needed, but studies are increasingly finding that the benefits of substituting sugar-sweetened food and beverages with those that have been sweetened artificially may not be as clear as once thought, particularly when consumed in large amounts. One reason may be a "rebound" effect, where some people end up consuming more of an unhealthy type of food because of the misperception that because it's sugar-free it's healthy. Also, be cautious with sugar alcohols — including mannitol, sorbitol and xylitol. Sugar alcohols can increase your blood sugar level. And for some people, sugar alcohols may cause diarrhea. Continue reading >>

Diet Soft Drinks

Diet Soft Drinks

Soft drinks (also called pop, sodas, fizzy drinks) generally refer to flavoured non-alcoholic drinks. Diet soft drinks, which are artificially sweetened are often a popular option for people with diabetes as they generally have an insignificant effect on blood glucose levels. Diet soft drinks and diabetes As a general rule, people with diabetes wishing to have a soft drink will usually want to choose diet soft drinks over sugary versions. Exceptions to this general rule are if someone with diabetes actively needs to treat or avoid low blood sugar levels developing as a result of medication such as insulin. The majority of diet drinks have no sugar and should not raise blood sugar levels. However, it is worth checking the carbohydrate value on the packaging if you are unsure or are trying a new diet soft drink. Diet drinks in pubs, bars and restaurants Most bars and restaurants in the UK these days serve at least one diet soft drink. Diabetes.co.uk is aware that people with diabetes are occasionally served full sugar soft drinks accidentally by bar or restaurant staff. This is more likely to happen in loud or busy environments. It may be possible to reduce the chances of being served a sugary soft drink by accident by: Checking with the bar or waiting person that it is a diet soft drink Asking for the diet soft drink in a can or bottle (where this is possible) Telling the bar or waiting person why you need it to be a diet drink Diet drinks and weight gain Artificially sweetened soft drinks are often referred to as diet drinks because the sweeteners used are very low calorie. It would make sense to assume that low or zero calorie drinks would not contribute to weight gain but some research studies have indicated that diet drinks may be associated with weight gain. One the Continue reading >>

What Everyone Must Know About Coke Zero And Diabetes

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 >>

7 Foods That Spike Blood Sugar

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 >>

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