The Psychological Impact of Diet Soda


In recent decades, although the amount of regular soda being consumed has decreased, the amount of people drinking diet soda daily is increased.  During this time, America’s obesity rate has also risen. Marketing would lead us to believe that diet sodas are “healthier” for you than regular soda, but the truth is that they’re both bad for you.

Research has previously shown that diet drinks result in weight gain long term, but recently, the research team at the Texas Christian University found that diet soda can influence your psychological processes as well.  The researchers that conducted the study found that artificially sweetened beverages (like diet soda) impacts our reactions to sweet food in ways that are distinctly different from sugar-sweetened or non-sweetened drinks. The research suggests that this leads to an increasing temptation to the next high-calorie treat that crosses our view.

The experiment showed this by having participants drink one of three beverages: Sprite (sugar sweetened), Sprite Zero (artificially sweetened), or lemon-lime flavored sparkling mineral water (unsweetened). Participants were then allowed to open a box and choose from three items to take with them. In the box was: a pack of Trident sugar-free gum, a bag of M&Ms,  and a bottle of natural spring water.  The researchers found that those who drank the artificially sweetened drink were 2.93 times more likely to take the candy than those who had consumed  Sprite or the lemon-lime flavored sparkling mineral water.

Even though our body thinks we are getting our sugar boost from the soda and when it does not get the boost from the artificially sugar our body goes in a craving move for the next high-calorie option that will supply the sugar boost.


To read the full article, go to HuffPost


Leave a Reply