Dr. Joseph Mercola
How many sodas have you had today? How about your kids? The
average American drinks an estimated 56 gallons of soft drinks
each year, but before you grab that next can of soda, consider
this: one can of soda has about 10 teaspoons of sugar, 150
calories, 30 to 55 mg of caffeine, and is loaded with artificial
food colors and sulphites.
This is an alarming amount of sugar, calories and harmful
additives in a product that has absolutely no nutritional
value. Plus, studies have linked soda to osteoporosis, obesity,
tooth decay and heart disease. Despite this, soda accounts
for more than one-quarter of all drinks consumed in the United
Teenagers and children, who many soft drinks are marketed
toward, are among the largest consumers. In the past 10 years,
soft drink consumption among children has almost doubled in
the United States. Teenage boys now drink, on average, three
or more cans of soda per day, and 10 percent drink seven or
more cans a day. The average for teenage girls is more than
two cans a day, and 10 percent drink more than five cans a
While these numbers may sound high, theyre not surprising
considering that most school hallways are lined with vending
machines that sell, of course, soft drinks. Its not
uncommon for schools to make marketing deals with leading
soft drink companies such as Coca-Cola from which they receive
commissions--based on a percentage of sales at each school--and
sometimes a lump-sum payment.
The revenues are used for various academic and after-school
activities, but what activity could be worth devastating the
students health, which is exactly what consuming all
that soda is doing? Getting rid of vending machines in schools--or
replacing their contents with pure water and healthy snacks--could
make a big difference, as vending machines can increase the
consumption of sweetened beverages by up to 50 or more cans
of soda per student per year.
Lets take a look at some of the major components of
a can of soda:
Phosphoric Acid: May interfere with the body's ability
to use calcium, which can lead to osteoporosis or softening
of the teeth and bones. Phosphoric acid also neutralizes
the hydrochloric acid in your stomach, which can interfere
with digestion, making it difficult to utilize nutrients.
Soft drink manufacturers are the largest single user of
refined sugar in the United States. It is a proven fact
that sugar increases insulin levels, which can lead to
high blood pressure, high cholesterol, heart disease,
diabetes, weight gain, premature aging and many more negative
side effects. Most sodas include over 100 percent of the
RDA of sugar.
This chemical is used as a sugar substitute in diet soda.
There are over 92 different health side effects associated
with aspartame consumption including brain tumors, birth
defects, diabetes, emotional disorders and epilispsy/seizures.
Further, when aspartame is stored for long periods of
time or kept in warm areas it changes to methanol, an
alcohol that converts to formaldehyde and formic acid,
which are known carcinogens.
Caffeine: Caffeinated drinks cause jitters, insomnia,
high blood pressure, irregular heartbeat, elevated blood
cholesterol levels, vitamin and mineral depletion, breast
lumps, birth defects, and perhaps some forms of cancer.
I recommend that everyone avoid drinking tap water because
it can carry any number of chemicals including chlorine,
trihalomethanes, lead, cadmium, and various organic pollutants.
Tap water is the main ingredient in bottled soft drinks.
Soda is one of the main reasons, nutritionally speaking,
why many people suffer health problems. Aside from the
negative effects of the soda itself, drinking a lot of
soda is likely to leave you with little appetite for vegetables,
protein and other food that your body needs.
If you are still drinking soda, stopping the habit is an easy way
to improve your health. Pure water is a much better choice. If you
must drink a carbonated beverage, try sparkling mineral water.
The Amazing Statistics
and Dangers of Soda Pop
Soda Causing Nutritional
Deficiencies in Children
Each Daily Soda
Increases Obesity Risk 60%
Bad News Increase in Soda and
Healthy Diet Deemed
Responsible for High School Students Good Behavior