Research Links Diet Sodas to Stroke

We’ve long been leery of all the chemicals, caffeine, and artificial sweeteners used to jack up drinkers of diet sodas, and a new study indicating that drinking diet soft drinks may increase risk for stroke only makes us more worried about the mysterious effects of those calorie-free cans. Researchers tracked the habits and health of about 2,500 adults in Manhattan over a nearly 10-year period, and found that those who drank diet sodas daily had about a 48% higher risk of stroke or heart attack than subjects who drank no soft drinks at all.

Though they haven’t yet identified the science behind the statistics, they say the link persists regardless of other risk factors like exercise, smoking ,diabetes, weight, and alcohol consumption, but they haven’t discovered the science behind the link. The researchers say that this should be considered a preliminary study, but wish for further studies to explore the health effects of diet sodas. But Dr. Steven Greenberg, a neurologist and vice chairman of the International Stroke Conference in California, where the study was presented earlier this week, isn’t quite so cautious in his warnings: He says the study should be considered “a wakeup call to pay attention to diet sodas,” according to USA Today.

With every study implying that diet sodas are unhealthy, the American Beverage Association is quick to pipe up and remind reporters that the studies are inconclusive, and that some studies show drinking diet sodas instead of regular might help weight loss. But just when in doubt, we say limit your sodas, and here are ten reminders of why we think they’re risky business:

1. Artificial sweeteners may be harmful to your health for several reasons, including that they may cause migraines, insomnia, and heightened PMS. Ouch.

2. Artificial sweeteners can still raise your blood sugar.

3. If artificial sweeteners don’t bother you, other risky ingredients like phosphoric acid, potassium carbonate, and citric acid should.

4. And if you’re still thinking that diet sodas are a better way to sate your cravings than the sugary stuff, nutritionist Lauren Slayton’s explanation of why diet coke isn’t better than coke might give you a reality check.

5. Also, did you know that Diet Coke explodes when you mix it with Mentos? We don’t want to know what happens when it hits our stomachs.

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    • Sam

      “and found that those who drank diet sodas daily had about a 48% higher risk of stroke or heart attack than subjects who drank no soft drinks at all.”

      What about percent risk of stroke or heart attack difference for non-diet soda drinkers?

    • Scott

      Quoting a USA today blurb that doesn’t reference any actual publication – interesting. Show us the data, and spare us the dietitians’ gabble.

    • Bo Jacks

      This article didn’t cite any numbers, if anyone looked at this scientifically, it proves nothing and even states at the end more research is required for full understanding.

      The whole story is vague and inconclusive with no details on process or procedure or findings.

      Yes I’m concerned about my health and I want to know whats bad out there. To make accusation with no credible evidence with this sort of media attention is stupid. This must be the 10th different site citing this half-assed information, and the media just copy and pasting it without any thought.

    • Kerahdah

      Why do people believe the hype of advertising. How many people believe that decaffinated coffe is better than the real thing? Has anyone ever bothered finding out what gets done to reall coffee beans to arrive at a decaf? But is sounds cool to order decaf, right? No it’s not. If you’re interested in the health of your body, take the trouble to investogate what you fill it up with. That’s you responsibility. The manufaturer’s responsibility is to make a profist for the shareholders, and they will do it even if it has to risk your health. Wake up, and smell the real coffee!!!

    • Kerahdah

      You can take a horse to water, but you cannot make it drink. Don’t wait for statistics to be published. Do your homework. The media owes you nothing!

    • blue

      maybe they are putting arsenic in diet soda. instead of apple juice and infant formula. drink some water. problem solved.