Dear Dish-It: I’m Stuck on Soda!
I love pop but my parents won’t let me drink it. What should I do?
Pop Quiz: Is Soda a Healthy Choice?
Dear S Chik,
Actually, I agree with your mom and “pop” on this one – and so does science! According to a recent study, 50% of folks in the U.S. guzzle sugary beverages daily. The American Heart Association, however, suggests we drink fewer than three sodas per week; all the sugar and extra calories found in a can of pop can have serious health consequences, like an increased likelihood of Type 2 diabetes. Yikes!
Soda pop is basically flavored sugar water that has no nutrients in it. Rather, a regular can of pop contains, on average, 40 grams of sugar. Sugar is known to cause tooth decay and has been linked to childhood obesity.
Soda also contains caffeine, which can raise your blood pressure, pulse rate and the amount of acids in your stomach. It’s also addictive and causes dehydration. Drinking too much caffeine can cause nervousness, restlessness, inability to concentrate and even insomnia.
Drinking pop once in a while, like at a friend’s birthday party, isn’t a big deal – as long as you’re drinking healthy beverages the rest of the time. Water is the best option, and fruit juice is better than soda pop because it contains some nutrients. If you can drink it (lots of people can’t eat dairy), milk is also a good choice.
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