Food and Wellness

Just one Diet Coke or Pepsi Max a day can ‘triple the risk of a deadly stroke’ and dementia

Just one Diet Coke or Pepsi Max a day can ‘triple the risk of a deadly stroke’ and dementia

IF YOU’RE partial to a can of Pepsi Max at lunch, or enjoy a splash of Coke Zero with your favourite rum — you might want to put that drink back on ice.

According to a new study, just one diet drink a day can triple the risk of a deadly stroke, with researchers also finding the beverages have a “worrying association” with dementia.

The team of researchers from Boston’s University School of Medicine, said people who consume a can of artificially-sweetened soft drink a day were at three times the risk of suffering the most common form of stroke compared to non-drinkers.

The US study also indicated that diet soft drink fans were 2.9 times more likely to develop Alzheimer’s. But after accounting for all lifestyle factors, the researchers found the link to dementia was statistically insignificant, however, the impact on stroke risk remained.

2

The study, which looked at ten years’ worth of data from more than 4,300 people, indicates that people need to look beyond the word ‘diet’ when making drink choices.

“Drinking at least one artificially sweetened beverage daily was associated with almost three times the risk of developing stroke or dementia compared to those who drank artificially sweetened beverages less than once a week,” the research read, which was published in Stroke, the journal of the American Heart Association.

“After adjustments for age, sex, education (for analysis of dementia), calorific intake, diet quality, physical activity and smoking, higher recent and higher cumulative intake of artificially sweetened soft drinks were associated with an increased risk of ischaemic stroke, all-cause dementia and Alzheimer’s disease dementia.”

3

“To our knowledge, our study is the first to report an association between daily intake of artificially sweetened soft drink and increased risk of both all-cause dementia and dementia because of Alzheimer’s disease,” the co-authors added.

THE PROBLEM WITH THE ‘NO CALORIES’ TRADEOFF:

Diet drinks contain next-to-no calories, because they use artificial sweeteners that are hundreds, sometimes thousands of times sweeter than sugar.

There is public concern about some sweeteners, with scientists across the world arguing that low-calorie substitutes may lead to weight gain and increase the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

“A lot of people assume they must be healthy choices because they are not sugared beverages, but the critical thing for people to understand is we don’t have the evidence,” Prof Susan Swithers, from the US’s Purdue University told the BBC.

Typically, the different types of sweeteners used in diet drinks range from Aspartame, Saccharine and Stevia.

Aspartame is the sweetener most used in diet drinks, and is also the most controversial.

At 200 times sweeter than sugar, it is used right across the world as a sugar substitute, including cereal, chewing gum and lollies.

“Diet drinks, despite having zero sugar and hardly any calories, actually taste far sweeter than regular soft-drinks,” nutritionist Kristen Beck told news.com.au.

“The problem is that the human brain aren’t set up to be able to deal with the
intensely-sweet, zero-calorie version of sweetness that artificial sweeteners provide.”

4

Humans are set up to crave and seek out sweet foods, and when they eat something sweet,
the brain responds to sweetness with signals to eat more.

“Artificial sweeteners provide an intensely sweet taste without any calories which can actually cause you to crave more sweet foods and drinks,” Ms Beck said.

“In turn, the sweetness drive you to eat more kilojoules from sweet foods and drinks than you normally would.

“While sugar signals a positive feeling of reward, artificial sweeteners may not be an
effective way to manage a craving for sweets.

“Artificial sweeteners trigger insulin, which sends your body into fat storage mode and leads to weight gain,” Brooke Alpert, author of The Sugar Detox said.

According to Prof. Swithers, ingesting sweeteners also obstructs the way the body deals with real sugar when it’s consumed again.

“We think the diet sodas may be bad because they make it hard to deal with the sugar you are consuming,” she said.

“When the animals get real sugar they’re not as good at processing it, their hormonal responses get blunted, their blood sugar levels go up and it leads to weight gain.”

Online Source: news.com.au

Food and Wellness

More in Food and Wellness

Diet tips: The right food habits during monsoon

Diet tips: The right food habits during monsoon

The Indian TelegraphAugust 12, 2017
NSW coughs and sneezes with highest number of cases of flu ever in first six months of the year

NSW coughs and sneezes with highest number of cases of flu ever in first six months of the year

The Indian TelegraphJuly 3, 2017
‘When it was knocked back by the government, it was just a kick in the guts’

‘When it was knocked back by the government, it was just a kick in the guts’

The Indian TelegraphMay 29, 2017
Americans have been denied the joy of a Kinder Surprise ... until now

Americans have been denied the joy of a Kinder Surprise … until now

The Indian TelegraphMay 25, 2017
Stop avoiding mushrooms! Grilled mushrooms are healthier and rich in nutrients

Stop avoiding mushrooms! Grilled mushrooms are healthier and rich in nutrients

The Indian TelegraphMay 21, 2017
Fidget spinners disrupting children’s learning, principals say

Fidget spinners disrupting children’s learning, principals say

The Indian TelegraphMay 17, 2017
Understanding female genital mutilation: The practice and the issues

Understanding female genital mutilation: The practice and the issues

The Indian TelegraphMay 17, 2017
Brilliant reaction to designer Thomas Puttick using 60-year-olds in fashion week show

Brilliant reaction to designer Thomas Puttick using 60-year-olds in fashion week show

The Indian TelegraphMay 15, 2017
Swiss court upholds sentence in ‘stealthing’ condom case

Swiss court upholds sentence in ‘stealthing’ condom case

The Indian TelegraphMay 11, 2017
Stockyard’s kiwami wagyu crowned Australia’s best steak at Royal Queensland Food and Wine Show

Stockyard’s kiwami wagyu crowned Australia’s best steak at Royal Queensland Food and Wine Show

The Indian TelegraphMay 8, 2017
Dreaming 'hot zone' found at the back of the brain

Dreaming ‘hot zone’ found at the back of the brain

The Indian TelegraphMay 4, 2017
Ardi Rizal, the two-year-old chain smoker has kicked the habit for good as new photos emerge of a healthy nine-year-old

Ardi Rizal, the two-year-old chain smoker has kicked the habit for good as new photos emerge of a healthy nine-year-old

The Indian TelegraphMay 1, 2017
NT juvenile justice royal commission hears escaped inmates gave themselves up for a McDonald’s meal

NT juvenile justice royal commission hears escaped inmates gave themselves up for a McDonald’s meal

The Indian TelegraphApril 27, 2017
Researchers warn of 457 visa decision impact on medical breakthroughs

Researchers warn of 457 visa decision impact on medical breakthroughs

The Indian TelegraphApril 20, 2017
Why you shouldn’t rinse dishes before loading them in the dishwasher

Why you shouldn’t rinse dishes before loading them in the dishwasher

The Indian TelegraphApril 16, 2017
Former sport stars talk life after retirement on SBS’s Insight program

Former sport stars talk life after retirement on SBS’s Insight program

The Indian TelegraphApril 12, 2017
New Zealand’s Prime Minister Bill English puts tinned spaghetti on his pizza

New Zealand’s Prime Minister Bill English puts tinned spaghetti on his pizza

The Indian TelegraphApril 10, 2017
Ovarian cancer research: 12 new risk genes identified

Ovarian cancer research: 12 new risk genes identified

The Indian TelegraphApril 5, 2017
Is fitness affecting your fertility?

Is fitness affecting your fertility?

The Indian TelegraphApril 3, 2017
Go meat-free this week with seven healthy recipes you’ll love

Go meat-free this week with seven healthy recipes you’ll love

The Indian TelegraphMarch 29, 2017
Tomatoes, capsicum crops could be badly hit during Cyclone Debbie, local growers warn

Tomatoes, capsicum crops could be badly hit during Cyclone Debbie, local growers warn

The Indian TelegraphMarch 27, 2017