The news isn’t good for soda drinkers. You don’t have to be drinking one of those supper big gulp type drinks daily to be affected by sugar sweetened beverages, New research out of the Imperial College of London found that just 12oz a day can drastically increase the risk for type 2 diabetes.

While the researchers in this study focused mainly on the negatives of sugar consumption from soda, in Rich Food, Poor Food, we highlight the top 10 reasons to avoid soda. Here they are:

1. Sugar

  • Blocks the absorption of calcium and magnesium
    • Two very important minerals for strong bones. According to the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, as much as 90 percent of adult bone mass is established during adolescence. Diminished intake of these micronutrients in childhood has been shown to result in the early onset of osteoporosis.
    • When Calcium and Magnesium are deficient studies out of Philadelphia’s Monell Chemical Senses Center show that the body begins to crave salty and sugary foods. These cravings lead to increased appetite and possible weight gain.

2. High Fructose Corn Syrup

  • Unlike sugar, it does not trigger the secretion of leptin, a hormone that tells your brain when you are full. Because of this, eating HFCS can lead to increased caloric intake    and obesity. HFCS consumption can also lead to an increased risk of heart disease because it elevates triglyceride levels. As an ingredient goes, it is difficult to find one with worse press. It fills food with an intensely sweet flavor, but no nutritional value.
  • Toxic Mercury Risk. The CDC reports that Americans consume an average of 60 pounds of this sweetener per person every year. Researchers from Environmental Health discovered high amounts of mercury (an element that causes damage to the brain, lungs, and kidneys), in nearly 50 percent of commercial HFCS samples.

3. Artificial Colors

The caramel color is linked to lung, liver, and thyroid cancer.

Other artificial colors such as Blue 1, Blue 2, Yellow 5 , Yellow 6 and Red 40 are banned in other countries for their possible carcinogenic activity as well as the fact that studies show them to cause Attention Deficit ADHD in children.

4. Phosphoric acid 

  • Bad for the bones. While it adds bubbles it also impairs the absorption of calcium and magnesium, which is so important for the formation of children’s bones.

5. Artificial Flavors 

  • Often contain MSG, which (in studies on rats) increases the intake of food by 40%. This ingredient causes the pancreas to secrete insulin, which drops your blood sugar and makes you hungrier faster. When the body over-releases insulin, it can lead to insulin resistance, which is the start of type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and many other health problems. MSG-induced obesity is an accepted concept in scientific circles, so much so that when studies require obese animals, the first thing they are fed to fatten them up is MSG.

6. Sodium Benzoate 

  • When it is in a product that contains Vitamin C the two form a known carcinogen called BENZENE.  It is also an asthma causing allergen.

7. Brominated Vegetable Oil (BVO)

  • BVO causes major thyroid damage. This bad boy is composed mainly of bromine, a poisonous chemical whose vapors are considered both corrosive and toxic. BVO is banned in more than one hundred countries. It was recently the subject of a major petition against Gatorade. BVO competes with iodine for receptor sites in the body, causing what is called a brominated thyroid. Elevated bromide levels have been implicated in every thyroid disease, from simple hypothyroidism (slow metabolism) to autoimmune diseases to thyroid cancer.

8. Artificial Sweeteners 

  • Recent studies have proven that choosing foods and beverages sweetened with sugar substitutes may actually cause you to overeat and gain weight and slow down your metabolism. While these Sinister Sugar Substitutes may lull you in to a false sense of zero- calorie security, your body is less convinced. The sweetness tells your brain that calories and micronutrients are coming in; however, when they don’t arrive, your body shouts out for nutrients and sends you on a quest to find more food.
  •       Additionally each sugar substitute has negative health ramifications.
    • Aspartame accounts for more than 75 percent of all adverse reactions to food additives reported to the FDA and has been well reported to cause neurological symptoms like dizziness, seizures, depression, breathing difficulties, and weight gain. Some studies have even linked it to cancer, epilepsy, Alzheimer’s, and multiple sclerosis.
    • According to a Duke University study, sucralose decreased “good” gut bacteria by 50 percent. Your gut is home to 80 percent of your immune system, and these same bacteria can help fight heart disease, reduce cravings, and, best of all, aid in the absorption of your micronutrients.
    • Studies by the National Institutes of Health show that rats fed saccharin weighed 20 percent more than rats fed sugar after only five weeks. The sugar substitute did not cause body temperatures to rise, signifying that the body was expending little to no energy (burning calories) to process the foods containing saccharin.

9.  Calcium Disodium EDTA

  • This ingredient leaches minerals from the body that children need to perform other functions (vitamin C, magnesium, iron, calcium, zinc and potassium)

10.  The level of acidity

  • Contain high amounts of citric, tartaric and malic acids, which can erode children’s tooth enamel. Most soda has a pH level of 2, which is 100,000 times more acidic than a neutral pH of 7.

If you haven’t yet, make sure you visit the Rich Food Resource Center for free Rich Food Coupons and our Limited Edition Shopping Tote.