Soda: Is it good for you?

By Julian Quintero, Matthew Cadogan, Denzel Eustache
FEB 25, 2019

Sodas are among the most popular drinks in the world, but do people know how harmful they are?

According to Harvard School of Public Health, most sodas contain large amounts of sugar, which can increase the risk of type-2 diabetes, heart disease, and other health issues. St. Thomas Aquinas (STA) school nurse Mrs. Maureen Scanlon told Raider Review that females should not consume more than 24-25 grams (six teaspoons) of sugar, and males should not consume more than 37.5 grams (nine teaspoons) per day. A can of soda contains anywhere from 36 to 42 grams (9.2 to 10.5 teaspoons) of sugar and 29 grams (6.8 teaspoons) of caffeine.

According to Healthline.com, significant weight gain can be caused by drinking excessive amounts of soda. One of the components of soda is corn syrup which contains fructose. An article on healthline.com explains that, “Glucose can be metabolized by every cell in your body, fructose can only be metabolized by one organ – your liver.” If you overload your liver with sugar it causes fat to build up. If a person continues to drink soda constantly, it can decrease the function of the liver and cause liver disease.

There are better drinks than soda such as green tea. According to Everydayhealth.com reporter Adrienne Rayski, “Green tea may help reduce the risk of several types of cancer, heart disease, obesity, kidney stones, and possibly even cavities.” Green tea is a good alternative drink to soda because it includes health benefits and is low in calories and sugar. An even better option, according to Mrs. Scanlon, is water. She explained that, “Water is one of the best substitutes instead of consuming soda. You can even infuse your water with some fruits to add natural flavor.”

According to Healthline.com, soda wreaks havoc on a person’s dental health. Not only does soda contain an excessive amount of sugar, it also contains harmful acids. To be exact, soda contains phosphoric and citric acid which weakens the teeth enamel. This can leave your teeth exposed to decay and cavities.

In an article on the Sleepeducation.org website, Thomas M. Heffron reports that caffeine in soda can affect your sleep schedule in a negative way. The caffeine causes high levels of energy and restlessness. “Caffeine blocks the adenosine receptor to keep you from feeling sleepy. Caffeine begins to affect your body very quickly and reaches a peak level in your blood within 30 to 60 minutes.” Especially when soda is consumed in the evening, it can make falling asleep more difficult and reduce the amount of hours of sleep.

There are a wide variety of drinks that are more beneficial than soda. People should consume drinks that offer more health benefits and contain less sugar, caffeine and sodium.

Photos: Wikimedia Commons