Drinking Soda—Doctor's Warning

John Crowley
By John Crowley Latest Reply 2009-09-16 10:01:41 -0500
Started 2009-01-22 13:15:27 -0600

I posted this in another discussion, but I thought it was important enough that it should be it's own discussion.

Each year, my son's endocrinologist attends a conference focused on the latest diabetes research. When he returns, he writes a summary of all that he learned and gives it to all of his patients.

One of the studies that was reported at the conference looked at the relationship between drinking regular soda and cardiovascular issues. This is the direct quote from my son's doctor:

"I again beg of you to avoid regular soda whenever possible. We already know what it does to Hgb A1c levels and to weight (remember one can of soda per day for a year can result in a weight gain of 15 pounds) but now it's shown that it may well impact the lipids that set up our patients for heart disease when they are older. Stay away from this poison!"

Now I must tell you, this doctor is about as laid back as any person I've ever met. He is no alarmist. So when I read this statement in his report, it really woke me up. Regular soda is simply not an option anymore at our home. Period.

37 replies

jessNY4U 2009-07-17 05:30:22 -0500 Report

I have type 1 for the past 30yrs and is it okay to drink any kind of diet soda?
I have been drinking diet drinks since i was 8 yrs old it is hard to find tasteful non suger drinks

freddyg2u 2009-03-14 14:11:50 -0500 Report

That is some great advice about soda. Especially diet soda. Aspartame and like sugar substitutes are killers to both type of diabetics and carbonated soda also is bad for us.

I found that using Crystal Lite to be very refreshing and just the right drink for everyone. Then again, there is city gin "water" which is what I prefer over anything.

I just joined this blog and i a delighted with everyone's input and inquiry's. God Bless. Fred

daniel velazco
daniel velazco 2009-07-12 17:58:59 -0500 Report

When I was at the Dr office I was reading a diabetic magazine and it said the we should drink 3-4 cups of green or black tea a day. Well I drink a lot of green tea every day as I don't like to drink to much diet coke due to the aspertine. I have heard to many times that the aspertine is bad for you. Plus there are many different flavors of green tea and also decaf. Dan

vgarrison 2009-03-13 13:30:12 -0500 Report


Thanks for bringing this subject back up. I would imagine that both diet and regular soda would make you gain weight, only for the simple fact of, if you are drinking soda then more than likely you are not drinking the recommended amount of water a day…also the caffine in all soda acts as a diuretic…(I know I spelled the wrong)…

I went from drinking 5 - 6 regular sodas a day down to 2-3 diet sodas a day now down to maybe 2 a week…even though I am on insulin I am still losing weight…don't know if its the eating different or the not drinking soad, or a combination of all of it…oh and I'm walking more than I have in years…

Blessed Be

tabby9146 2009-03-13 13:03:06 -0500 Report

Thanks for posting this. I was cutting down on sodas before diagnosis , and since the diagnosis, never have had even a taste of regular. I don't hardly ever drink the diet ones either, but I do like the taste of diet Mountain Dew. I have it only every once in a while and not even a whole bottle when I do.

Richard157 2009-03-02 08:53:52 -0600 Report

I love Crystal Lite powdered drinks even though they are not carbonated. My favorite flavors are classic orange, ruby red grapefruit and lemonade. Walmart sells powdered drinks too. Their apple flavor is great. Ocean Spray has cranapple and crangrape, excellent.

I was diagnosed when I was 6 and there were no diet drinks then. I had to drink water. A few years later they had kool Aid and saccharin sweeteners. I drank Kool Aid for many years. I never drank a regular soda unless I had one before diagnosis. I don't remember it if I did.

fearringtonc 2009-03-02 14:30:05 -0600 Report

Aldi's carries a product called Fit & Active. It comes in two flavors that I know of, lemonade and fruit punch. I love it. It is sugar free, caffiene free.

roshy 2009-03-02 06:25:24 -0600 Report

there needs to be more research into the diet soda!! if they take away my pepsi max i dont know what ill do!!

DJ 2009-03-02 07:27:46 -0600 Report

Soda of any kind is Poison..regular or Diet,I said this yesterday in the discussion on dealing with Blood Sugar Low's.Regular soda pretty much speaks for it's self as it is loaded with Sugar, and Diet Soda has aspertame and if ingested in large doses can lead to Aspertame poisoning with very simular symptoms of Fibromyalgia that are so alike that many Dr.s have miss-diagnosed the Aspertame poisoning as Fibro..had this happen to a good friend of mine,but thankfully she got hold of an article on Aspertame Poisoning and stopped all artifical sweetners and with-in a week her so called Fibro was gone. Now, that is not to say that all Fibro symptoms are Aspertame caused of course…but if you are drinking huge amounts of Diet Sodas it would make sence if you are experiancing Fibro like symptoms Stop the soda..Ya think?? Someone else also posted a link to this Aspertame poisoning (much more detailed explaination) I think it might have been Amy T, in the Product section I think,my memory fails me as to where it is exactly but it is here on site I know that. My point though is we already have enough to deal with,and Soda like smoking can be done away with..I never thought I could stop either one..but I quit soda many years ago and am now Smoke free too.If I can do it anyone can, as I have always been a dependant personality and really have no will power to give up the things I am dependant on..but so far I have given up sugar,sweets,soda,cigarettes,artifical sweetners,and the list goes on..I do think I am better off with-out most of it!!

MeiMei 2009-03-02 12:46:46 -0600 Report

Again it's the Aspartame that is the cuprit in diet sodas. As said above it can lead to fibromyalgia, neurological symptoms as well as a whole host of other symptoms. Also the carbonation can lead to osteoporosis. Much better to ditch the sodas of all shapes and varieties and drink green tea or lemon aide sweetened with splenda or truvia (the new sweetener made from the stevia plant). Get your water from water it is less expensive than sodas.

2009-01-25 17:03:58 -0600 Report

I have to admit I am a Coke freak! Since being diagnosed with diabetes, I was told that 16 ounces per day of regular sweetened soda was fine. My taste, however, has changed and the Coke doesn't taste so good anymore. I will take your advice and stay with water or unsweetened juice. Thanks John, Angie

LadyDi - 26259Miller
LadyDi - 26259Miller 2009-01-25 17:17:04 -0600 Report

I've been drinking the Ocean Spray diet juices lately, and they're very good. Sometimes I even dilute them with water - always use ice. There's 2g of carbs and 2g of sugar per 8 oz.

2009-01-25 17:21:49 -0600 Report

Hey Diane, missed you. It's so funny but I bought Ocean Spray this week! It taste great and I had decided the Cokes had to go before I got home and read John's discussion. Take care my friend! Angie

LadyDi - 26259Miller
LadyDi - 26259Miller 2009-01-25 18:23:30 -0600 Report

Well, you know what they say about great minds thinking alike. I've been irritated for a long time because there are so few juices that have little or no sugar and/or carbs. At least I've had a hard time finding many. Glad you like it. I just had a glass!

LadyDi - 26259Miller
LadyDi - 26259Miller 2009-01-23 13:26:35 -0600 Report

I just got home from a visit with my endo. I asked him about the diet soda, and he said no problem "in moderation". He wouldn't want me to have more than 3 a wk. His reason was because of the effect on bone deterioration. No problem with the artificial sweetners and says there should be no effect on your BS. He said he would much rather I drank 2% milk or water, however.

GabbyPA 2009-01-23 12:25:31 -0600 Report

Soda is not a great thing. We all drink it like water, but to be honest, we should be drinking water. You can add bubbles or flavors yourself if you need that bubbly. Once I was diagnosed I quit cold turkey drinking any kind of soda. I don't consume artificial sweeteners either, so no diet sodas either. Even the rumor of Coke and Pepsi going to a stevia based sweetener is not enough to make me drink it. It is a waste of money and damages far more than we can imagine. I save $15 a week by not buying soda for the family. Drink your water...it's best for you.

2009-01-23 11:27:01 -0600 Report

I drink alot of diet soda. If you ever come across any information that pertains to the diet sodas as you have gotten about the regular soda, I would be interested in that information. Thank you for your post. It was very informative.

Hank5 2009-01-26 23:35:49 -0600 Report

I Googled the question "Is Diet Coke harmful to your Kidneys" and found several articles. I now only drink water, green tea and coffee in the morning.

Penguin2000 2009-03-04 12:19:40 -0600 Report

My husband suffered non-diabetic renal failure. He could not have any dark colored sodas as they contain phosphorous and therefore are not allowed on a renal diet. I take that back, he could have root beer. More and more diet drinks are using Splenda, which is supposed to be better than the other alternatives. The new Truvia is supposed to be the best sugar substitute going right now according to an article I recently read.

Lanore 2009-01-23 08:28:08 -0600 Report

Hi John…How about Diet Soda is that grouped in there as well??

LadyDi - 26259Miller
LadyDi - 26259Miller 2009-01-23 09:25:29 -0600 Report

I recently did some searching on line about that same thing, as I do drink diet Coke/Pepsi - altho not excessively. I read several studies saying there are indications that those who drink the diet drinks are more likely to become diabetic. How much of the diet drink you would have to drink for that to happen, I don't remember reading. Need to try to determine, I guess. I would find it difficult to do, but giving up the sodas altogether is obviously the best thing. Just not my coffee!!!

MISS PAM 2009-01-23 00:58:47 -0600 Report

So is diet soda ok? I keep getting conflicting info on this. Is sweet and low or equal or splenda ok?

John Crowley
John Crowley 2009-01-23 09:48:26 -0600 Report

So this study was about regular sweetened soda. They weren't looking at all sodas.

I have never spoken to my son's doctor directly about diet sodas, but I plan to the next time we go in for an appointment.

From what I've read about diet sodas, there is no clear conclusion one way or the other. Probably the most interesting thing I ever read about diet sodas was a study that looked at all soda drinkers and their risk for weight gain. Amazingly, it made absolutely no difference in weight gain if you drank diet or regular soda. Both groups were more likely to have weight problems.

bigjrm45 2009-03-02 07:55:56 -0600 Report

I used to drink 4 to 6 liters of soda a day, after I became a type 2 I went to the diet soda and was giving some of it to my grand kids in there sippie cups until I tried to clean there cups and could not get the stain out of there cups ,got me to think what it was doing to me so now I will not drink eny of it.

rbergman 2009-03-02 08:13:59 -0600 Report

On the subject of regular soda, we were given basically the same information as John was, stay away, nothing good can come from it, diabetic or not.

On the subject of diet soda, I recently found out from another diabetic in the community we lived in prior to moving that he was having a lot of sciatic nerve issues and his Endo suggested NOT drinking any diet soda for a month and see if there was a difference, he told me that he followed his doctors orders, stopped drinking the diet soda and sure enough within that month he noticed a major difference, he continued to NOT drink any diet soda and the pain completely went away.
I myself am addicted to diet soda but this conversation was brought up with this fellow due to a pain I was experiencing that I couldn't explain and his suggestion was to stop drinking diet soda, I should also say it was diet coke that he was drinking all the time and that his Endo said it was the artificial sweetener in it that was the cause of his issues. I have 2 addictions, diet soda (diet dr. pepper) and cigarettes, of course I know the harm cigarettes can do, please lets not go there, but I never would have dreamed that diet soda could cause such issues as sciatic nerve pain.
I have not researched this myself so I can only pass along his story and cannot back it up myself but he truly believes that by not drinking the diet coke his sciatic nerve pain is gone.


SoccerNana55 2009-07-12 19:30:29 -0500 Report

All sodas are bad for you…they cause gas and bloating in your belly because of the aspertame. I tried Diet Coke w/Splenda and it just doesn't do anything for me, so I try to stay away from them.

Avera 2009-01-22 15:32:36 -0600 Report


I'm glad that you reposted this. I missed it the first time. The information concerning drinking regular soda sounds as if we could all benefit from it.

Before I was diagnosed with Type 2, I was addicted to regular Coke. I drank them like a normal person drinks water. I have always thought that the drinking of so many Cokes, (8 or more each day) had something to do with me getting diabetes.

Now I drink no kind of soda, diet or otherwise. I was so addicted to regular Coke that I still don't like the taste of anything "diet."

So far, I have no heart problems. I plan on trying my best to keep it that way.

You should post something like this on other health related web sites.

During the showing of the TV show "American Idol," Coke is launching an all out campaign this season to bring people back to drinking their product on a regular basis. I read this in the news.

Thanks again for the needed warning.


Hank5 2009-01-26 23:32:40 -0600 Report

I can identify with being addicted to Coke. I just recently stopped after having an addition that would polish off about 3 to 4 cans daily.

SoccerNana55 2009-07-12 16:32:51 -0500 Report

I only drink one (Diet Coke w/Lime) every once in a while but don't drink the whole can. If I don't drink it with the lime, my stomach feels nauseous. My pcp says it causes 'belly swelling'. I've also read numerous magazine articles that say alot of it is the aspertame (that is in the diet drinks); its bad for you. And my urologist says shouldn't drink period due to constant kidney stones. He has me on water, water, and water! But I do drink decaf tea maybe once a day and do drink the water. The urologist says to drink lemon juice in my water or drink lots of lemonade. My sweet hubby makes my lemonade fresh and we use Splenda. He seems to have the perfect formula.

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