We love going and grabbing a drink at any of our local drink stations: The Park, Swig, Sodalicious, etc. Going as a family we all have our favorites: Dirty Diet Coke, Diet Coke with cranberry and lime and Sprite with raspberry. Is it bad that we don’t regulate my kids soda consumption?
I for sure am not one of those parents that gives their child whatever they want, but when they ask nicely for a drink—why not? Turns out, soda isn’t the best option for kids to be drinking. Let me give you the facts:
- Soda contains zero nutrients, and is high in calories and sugar. Studies show a strong link between soda consumption and childhood obesity.
- Soda suppresses the appetite so kids are less likely to eat nourishing foods. Soda drinkers are less likely to get the recommended levels of vitamin A, calcium, magnesium, and other important nutrients.
- Phosphorus, a common ingredient in soda, can deplete bones of calcium. Girls who drink more soda are more prone to broken bones. Doctors are becoming concerned about the health impact of carbonated beverage consumption on teen-aged girls.
- Studies show a direct link between tooth decay and soda. Not only does the sugar cause cavities, the acids in soda etch off tooth enamel. Acid can begin to dissolve tooth enamel in only 20 minutes. Dentists are reporting complete loss of the enamel on the front teeth in teen-aged boys and girls who habitually drink sodas.
- Caffeine is known to create physical dependence and upsets the normal balance of neurochemistry in the developing brains of children. Caffeine stimulates the adrenal gland without providing the nourishment it needs. In large amounts, caffeine can lead to adrenal exhaustion, especially in children. Colas contain 35 to 38 milligrams of caffeine per 12-ounce can. Diet colas often contain a lot more. A can of Pepsi One has about 56 milligrams of caffeine. Mountain Dew, Mello Yellow, Sun Drop, Jolt, Barq’s Root Beer, and Sunkist Orange soda all contain caffeine. Sprite, 7-Up, ginger ale, and many brands of root beer are caffeine-free.
- Drinking soda every day can lead to blood sugar disorders, including diabetes.
- Aspartame, used in diet sodas, is a potent brain toxin and endocrine disrupter.
- Citric acid, often found in soda, may contain traces of MSG. MSG is another potent brain toxin. The artificial flavors found in soda may also contain traces of MSG.
- Drinking sodas regularly can upset the fragile, acid-alkaline balance of the stomach, creating a continuous acid environment. This prolonged acid environment can lead to inflammation of the stomach and duodenal lining, which can be quite painful.
- Sodas act as dehydrating diuretics, much like tea, coffee and alcohol, and can inhibit proper digestive function.
Okay, I get it. Soda isn’t the best option for my kids when we head over to pick up drinks for ourselves. But if you are parent, you have been there when your child is screaming because they want something. But you get to a point where you give in because you’ve had a rough day and just want to peace and quiet.
One of the things we have turned to is just getting a flavored water. Simple solution that has no calories, increases his water intake and I don’t feel like I am filling him with all the other crap that I am actually filling myself up with. Maybe from looking more into this, I myself can cut back on my Diet Coke intake and start focusing more on my water consumption. But, tomorrows a new day and two little kids can cause any parent to drink.