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Do you think drinking diet sodas in order to avoid the sugar in other drinks is healthy?
Those diet drinks you’ve been tipping up could erase your memories, leaving you suffering from dementia.
In fact, a study at Boston University recently found that people who drank diet soda daily were almost three times as likely to develop stroke and dementia when compared to those who did not.
And, drinking just one diet soda per day actually caused brain shrinkage.
That is not a good trade-off for a little sugar.
The problem is that those sugary sodas are dangerous too and I’m not talking about the risk of them causing blood sugar problems and diabetes.
The study also showed that people who drink sugary beverages frequently are more likely to have poorer memory, smaller overall brain volume, and a significantly smaller hippocampus, the area of the brain vital to learning and memory, all of which are early warning signs of Alzheimer’s.
This is a scary finding considering that in 2016, Americans consumed nearly 11 million metric tons of sugar, according to the US Department of Agriculture, much of it in the form of sugar-sweetened beverages like sports drinks and soda.
According to Sudha Seshadri, a professor of neurology at Boston University School of Medicine (MED) and a faculty member at BU’s Alzheimer’s Disease Center, “These studies are not the be-all and end-all, but it’s strong data and a very strong suggestion. It looks like there is not very much of an upside to having sugary drinks, and substituting the sugar with artificial sweeteners doesn’t seem to help.”
“Maybe good old-fashioned water is something we need to get used to.”
So, how can you kick the soda habit and what can you drink instead?
Brain boosting drinks
As the professor suggested, water is a great choice. Since your body, including your brain is made up primarily of water, your brain needs it to function optimally.
But, if water is not your cup of tea (pun intended), try a real cup of tea instead.
Recent studies have linked tea drinking with a significant decrease in the risk of Alzheimer’s and other cognitive disorders.
Turmeric tea is a great choice with its anti-inflammatory power to keep your brain healthy.
You can also try carrot juice to boost the antioxidants to your brain and prevent brain aging and beet juice (also the heart health ‘superjuice’) to increase blood flow to your brain.
Or, drink a cup or two of hot cocoa to help decrease your blood pressure, a leading risk factor for dementia.
Whichever you choose to drink, the research is clear…
Soda drinks, both sugary and diet are dangerous to your health and carry a real risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s. And you’ll be shocked even at how many annoying symptoms disappear when you ditch diet drinks.
One thing… don’t fall for the vitamin water trap. These contain a boatload of crystalline fructose — an artificial sweetener even more processed than HFCS, the stuff that increases you risk for heart disease and diabetes. Filtered water or mineral water are much better choices.
If you want to keep your memory sharp, stay away from sugary drinks and choose one of the brain healthy options above instead. Your memories are at stake so the time to kick that soda habit is right now.
Is soda bad for your brain? (And is diet soda worse?) — Science Daily
Sugary beverage intake and preclinical Alzheimer’s disease in the community — The Alzheimer’s Association
Tea Consumption Reduces the Incidence of Neurocognitive Disorders: Findings from the Singapore Longitudinal Aging Study — The Journal of Nutrition Health and Aging