Diabetes and diet soda

By Anurse Latest Reply 2012-04-10 16:59:42 -0500
Started 2009-09-11 10:33:22 -0500

Hi everyone! I am not a diabetic but am an RN who cares for many of them. Also, it runs in my family. I exercise and watch what i eat. Is this recent news about diet sodas linking to diabetes true? I only drink one per day. I have looked into it but get mixed reviews. Also and other advice on how to prevent it?

75 replies

Beav 2011-12-04 03:40:18 -0600 Report

I use a Brita water filter pitcher (Hub uses it alot to make his coffee) for my water and will brew up a 2 qt bottle of Ginseng Mint Tea…1 teabag Gevalia Honey Ginseng Mint, 1 tea bag Bigelow Plantation Mint, and 1 tea bag Lipton Natural Tea in 6 cups water let steep till very dark in color. Let cool completely, then add to the 2 qt container. Add remaining water to top. Serve over lots of ice. I drink this alot in the summertime it quinches my thirst after cutting the grass or yard work. I like it hot in winter too. But I never add sugar, the mint takes care of the sugar craving. I like my tea unsweetened unless I use lemon in it then I use Walmart brand sweetner (I like it better than Splenda which tends to give me a headache). I like teas, so I will experiment with flavor combos but all will have some sort of mint in them. Gavalia Lemon Berry Breeze Tea is really good with Bigelow Mint Medley (spearmint and peppermint tea). I will also make in winter, Russian SpiceTea, instead of sugar I use artificial sweetner, making it sugar-free. It's yummy with the cinnamon and clove flavors. Very festive. Plain ol' water is great too!

GeoSeal 2011-12-03 13:51:23 -0600 Report

I am SOOOO sick and tired of the useless excuses! WATER IS the Best and SMARTEST choice for a drink. The "Sugar Drinks or Diet Drinks" article is a great article. Unfortunately the message is NOT reaching everyone! I know from experience most people don't do any research regarding these things until they personally experience problems or a friend or family member experiences a problem. I may sound harsh in saying this but I am really sick of hearing all the whining and complaining and poor excuses for all those people out there wanting to continue to consume something that is harmful to their health just because it "Tastes Good"! Yeah yeah I know… I'm sure the soft drink companies will be up in arms because they stand to loose billions of dollars in sales if it's proven their sweetened water is seriously bad for people. As with the cigarette companies… Big money has big power and influence. Even when it comes to people's health.
I quit drinking "Soft Drinks" completely. It was easy. I decided my health and life were worth more than an Over Priced, Sugary or Artificially Flavored, can of Fizzed WATER! I was also disappointed in my doctor when he told me I was better off drinking Diet Drinks instead of a glass of natural fruit juice! I honestly can not see the justification in that statement. And yes, the juice drinking is done in moderation because I know it increases glucose levels. BUT if you're NOT a diabetic the fruit juice is 200% better than drinking an artificial drink. Think about it…What came first, the soft drink companies or the fruit tree? Why is it so hard for people to realize natural foods are better than artificial foods??
Those of you out there complaining about not being able to loose weight? Hey just quit eating and drinking in excess! And get a grip on reality! Yes, I've been there and done that… I loved eating… I loved drinking sweet drinks… I didn't exercise enough… Then I was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. I tried to make excuses to myself thinking I didn't have to change anything. I told myself I could keep consuming things that were not in the best interest of my good health. Guess what… The summary is always the same! Change IS necessary!
No, I don't know everything, but I do know that a person has to accept the truth and make changes he or she may not like. It takes willpower and determination to make changes in things we have been accustomed to doing most of our lives. The excuses have to stop. The selfish addictions have to cease. When you have a health issue and refuse to make the proper changes then you are simply being immature.
If you're one of those people continuing to make the useless excuses and if this article has offended you I will not apologize. I wrote this because I want to help people open their eyes and stop making the poor excuses for making proper changes. Hey, You don't want to give up the "Good Tasting" stuff that is harming you? Well that's the same as saying you don't want to be healthy and you don't care about living a long life.
If nothing above has caught your attention then this should say something…
I want to add that I have been able to control my type 2 diabetes and have lost 30 pounds in a year.

Mickey/CCHT 2011-12-04 20:39:56 -0600 Report

My you are a passionate one!! Nothing wrong with that, just an observation.
I hate to say it, but for a long time I was one of those people who would just make excuses to myself so I could continue doing what I was doing. I was in major denial. It took my body giving me a wake up call to change my life. It took me making a decision about what I needed to do to get better. All the knowledge thrown at you will do no good unless you make the conscious effort to change yourself. Just like a person who has an addiction. They can not change for someone else, they have to want it. Same goes with food and all the harmful things we tend to put into it.

Now I'm a fierce water drinker. Once in a while if I'm having a real bad craving, I will have one of those little cans of coke. They are smaller than a regular can. Not sure off hand the size, but they are tiny! It helps with getting rid of the craving without sending my #'s thru the roof! But I still have to be careful, don't want to slide back into old habits!

Take Care!
Peace, Mickey

hagar2935 2011-12-03 12:40:45 -0600 Report

I am SOOO Sick & Tired of all the "Food Police" people!

It is NOT the diet soda that is the problem! Nor is anything else ! It is the problem that people don't do anything in MODERATION!

Diet soda will NOT hurt you in moderation! Neither will wine, or McDonald's burgers, or McDonald's Fries, or Red Meat, or Chicken, or Pork, or ANYTHING ELSE!!!!!!!

Moderation is the KEY! Wake up people and get REAL!!!!

Yes, there are foods that are Bad for you if you do not LIMIT the consumption of them. There are also foods that are good for you but then become BAD for you if you over-consume! What we have a problem with in this Country is OVER CONSUMPTION!

I am Diabetic. I am careful not to over- consume anything, but I do not stop eating foods that I enjoy, like a good steak ONCE IN A WHILE, or a rare piece of cake once in a blue moon. I drastically have reduced my consumption of sugary foods and drinks as well as high fat & high sodium foods since becoming Diabetic. I especially am careful after having a heart attack several years ago. I sat down with a dietitian and explored what my best options were and they primarily revolved around MODERATION and Exercise! Those are the two GOLDEN WORDS for Diabetics, along with WEIGHT CONTROL!

IrishLaLa 2012-04-10 16:59:42 -0500 Report

Absolutely !!! I don't deny myself anything. I just cafefully and rigorously control how much of it I allow myself. I work out, eat healthy foods and enjoy an occasional treat. I just figure it into my carb allowance and go from there ! Thanks for the words of wisdom and common sense :)

Mickey/CCHT 2011-12-04 20:48:27 -0600 Report

Now I agree with what you say about the whole moderation thing. It is totally out of control! It is a proven fact that portions have gotten bigger and bigger over the years. And most people have no concept of what is a correct proportion! I didn't until I started managing my diabetes. And sometimes I still have issues with it.

Where I do have some disagreement with what you are saying is that a LOT of the foods that come prepared and ready for consumption have TONS of harmful chemicals in them. I have come across reports (I believe Heath News was one place) of companys being asked why they are putting them chemicals they do in foods and they say to make it look, smell, and taste better! YUCK! If it's that bad, why eat it! But besides that it is being shown that it is addictive to people. That is why a lot of people are having problems staying away from fast foods and prepackaged foods.

So, yes moderation is very important. But I also believe that we need to be cooking our foods from fresh ingredients to maintain a healthier lifestyle.

That is just my opinion. Any one can disagree with me if they like!
Peace, Mickey

Shelly 7209
Shelly 7209 2011-08-29 00:10:44 -0500 Report

I LOVE diet Coke and diet Root Beer. I drank it almost non-stop for the last two years. I also had a killer headache, 24/7, for the last two years. Then I watched a documentary about aspartame and it's recorded side effects, and stopped cold turkey. I haven't had a headache since, and it's been over three weeks. Now, if I really want a soda, I drink a regular one, and count the carbs. I have also cut out all 'diet" food and drink with artificial sweeteners. My blood sugar has NOT gone up as a result. I hope I never go back.

Shelly 7209
Shelly 7209 2011-08-29 00:10:58 -0500 Report

I LOVE diet Coke and diet Root Beer. I drank it almost non-stop for the last two years. I also had a killer headache, 24/7, for the last two years. Then I watched a documentary about aspartame and it's recorded side effects, and stopped cold turkey. I haven't had a headache since, and it's been over three weeks. Now, if I really want a soda, I drink a regular one, and count the carbs. I have also cut out all 'diet" food and drink with artificial sweeteners. My blood sugar has NOT gone up as a result. I hope I never go back.

Uncle Lew
Uncle Lew 2011-08-27 22:18:52 -0500 Report

I live on two to three liters of Coke Zero or Caffeine Free Diet Coke a day and I am enjoying it. You can live in fear of the Big Bad Diet Soda if you wish. I prefer to enjoy all the sensations of life and a cold diet cola is one of them. Diet soda is far superior to pipe rusting water.

rosedw` 2011-08-27 19:33:09 -0500 Report

I very rarely drank Pop (that's what we call it in Pa) and when I did, I never drank diet because I didn't like the idea of how it got to be diet. Since I became a type II, I started drinking soda and it seems like it is additive. I'm switing to ice tea or water.

Heggie 2011-08-27 18:33:36 -0500 Report

I have had type 1 diabetes since I was 20 years old in 1977, I never drank diet soda, didn't like the aftertaste, I finally found something I love and can drink all i want. It's Crystal Light, just add it to water and the flavors are great. My favorite is Cherry Pomegranate. Try it. You get your water in this way too.

Mickey/CCHT 2011-12-04 20:30:16 -0600 Report

Sounds yummy, does it have that funky fake sweetner taste? I can't hack that! Plus, I won't use anything with Splenda in it, heard too many bad things about it.

spitfirelady 2011-08-27 17:52:26 -0500 Report

Sorry about the spelling.. Am In the car on iPhone! :(

hagar2935 2011-12-03 12:46:45 -0600 Report

What are you doing with an IPhone in the car! Are you trying to kill someone… maybe yourself???

TWICE in the last 3 years we have had our cars totaled by someone texting while driving and ran into us… one who drove blindly through a red light while texting! GET A LIFE AND GET RID OF THE PHONE!

SlatonLeo 2011-08-27 15:42:53 -0500 Report

Well I know I don't like it and do not want to get used to it. Too many negatives to suit me, besides I can't stand the taste, or that is after taste. So I will stick to real soda or an alternative of juices and flavored waters without the sugar. I got used to drinking iced tea without sugar years ago and can not stand sugar tea now, also getting that way about sodas too. I like the fizz, but crazy about the sweet anymore.
It's funny how you can get used to something so quick if you really want to.
Any way; that is my take on it.

Type1Lou 2011-08-27 17:51:50 -0500 Report

I've found that my taste buds have evolved with diabetes. As a teenager, I loved Twinkies…now they make me gag…go figure! I drink my hot coffee without sugar or sweetener but if it's iced coffee, I sweeten it with Splenda. I've gotten used to the all natural Peanut Butter made with only peanuts and salt that you have to stir and refrigerate. Now, I won't touch any of the other PB's because I don't care for the taste or the texture. My diet is much healthier since becoming diabetic.

SlatonLeo 2011-08-27 19:46:25 -0500 Report

Yep; I have always drunk unsweetened coffee, black coffee is best for me anyway, and to be honest I don't want to get used to diet sodas at all, I'd just as soon drinking sodas alltogether. That would probably be best for me too. My diet is too, funny how tastes do change, but sometimes for the better. Thank you for sharing the information. Good night to you and the best for you and family.

Type1Lou 2011-08-27 15:38:47 -0500 Report

The culprit may not be the diet soda consumed but what and how much is also eaten along with the diet soda. We live in a SUPER-Size culture. How many people have you seen at a buffet with a diet soda and a large piece of chocolate cake? Isn't there something wrong with that combo? Too many people live to eat rather than eating to live. I only began to make healthy food choices after my diabetes manifested itself.

spitfirelady 2011-08-27 14:43:33 -0500 Report

Look, we can all go nuts with this… Moderation… And enjoy life.
Drink that diet coke… I prefer diet Rite, Hansens diet creamy root beer and diet Ginger ale.. I am also an RN and know "stress", sugar, and other
Non complex carbs, and high fats should be watched so, 'moderation/portion control/exercise/less stress…
Diet drinks? Think smart..:)

Art from Edison
Art from Edison 2011-08-27 15:30:37 -0500 Report

Moderation is the key. Take a little from each food group just in moderation. Any one sided approach can be harmful.

jayabee52 2011-08-27 15:47:29 -0500 Report

I guess, then Art my low carb high protein eating plan which avoids all bread and all sodas and all coffees and teas, is harmful to my body?

My Blood Glucose is consistently in the normal range without using diabetes meds at all, my most recent A1c was 5.5, and I have lost 50+ lbs in 7 mos. That is not good for me?

Type1Lou 2011-08-28 14:28:21 -0500 Report

Dear James, I am also a low-carb devotee. It is one sure way to lose excess pounds and keep blood sugars within more normal ranges…as your results clearly manifest. You can't argue with your success…well, maybe some will try, but we don't need to listen to them. Keep on doing the right thing for you.

melendez.louie 2011-08-27 22:33:29 -0500 Report

Wow! jayabee! That's certainly encouraging to hear! I, need to lose quite a bit of weight myself! Don't drink soda's and have been told to cut down on breads and I, can do without the coffee, but like tea. I'm just overwhelmed on what not to and what to eat.

spitfirelady 2011-08-27 17:57:07 -0500 Report

Congrats on your physical and sugar changes!! I know you must
Be proud!! And your loved ones. I know my husband is loving
The changes in me..:) keep it up!

spitfirelady 2011-08-27 17:56:51 -0500 Report

Congrats on your physical and sugar changes!! I know you must
Be proud!! And your loved ones. I know my husband is loving
The changes in me..:) keep it up!

Art from Edison
Art from Edison 2011-08-27 14:07:33 -0500 Report

This was a post that I sent concerning diet soda causing weight gain. It was a study using 65-75 years old for ten year.
{Just one more poorly constructed pseudo-scientific experiment. You would think they would have picked a younger group of people. 65-75 seems quite old, since at that age, weight /food intake in of a less concern. It seemed that this experiment was design to show that there was a weight gain with diet-soda usage rather “what is the effect of the use of diet soda.” Was there a control with people of the same age and background that did not touch any diet soda? Or the control group should have used regular (sugar containing) soda. These studies are a great example of “lying with statistics. Drinking diet soda is far better option than drinking regular soda. The use of diet soda might not quench your thirst as well as others but that wasn’t the point of the study. }

Anonymous 2011-08-27 14:35:36 -0500 Report

Art, you are out of your gourd. Diet sodas contain artificial sweeteners, which are known excitotoxins. Since you seem to be a "scientific expert," you may be familair with their propensity to kill brain cells (neorons), as well as their established link to dimentia and Alzheimer's. And their effect is greatest on the very young and the elderly. (See Exitotoxins: The Taste That Kills by Dr. R. Blaylock) You do great damage to unassuming and gullible diabetics by spreading your erroneous and dangerous opinions here. In addition to brain damage and liver damage, artificial sweeteners encourage overconsuming of calories (and therefore the weight gain you deny they are capabale of) because, like HFCS, they do not register satiety. In other words, the brain doesn't acknowlege consumption. You opinion about drinking diet sodas being better than drinking regular sodas is ill-informed, ignorant and potentially harmful to people who are not well-read. It's like saying "Smoking filtered cigarettes is better than smoking unfiltereds." Both will give you lung cancer. If you want to sound like an authority, at least read something before you go spouting off your personal opinion as if it were scientific fact.

jayabee52 2011-08-27 15:09:44 -0500 Report

Please! We can disagree, but there's no need to be abusive about it.

jayabee52 2011-08-27 15:36:49 -0500 Report

telling him he is "out of your [his] gourd". You COULD have said "I disagree" with what you said without being disagreeable. And be a courageous person. Don't criticize from behind a cloak of anonymity.

I define abuse like one supreme court justice said when he was asked his definition of pornography: "I know it when I see it".

Anonymous 2011-08-27 15:45:31 -0500 Report

You're right about the "gourd" comment — and I apologize. However, I disagree with your "definition" of abuse. You could say that about anything, couldn't you? Since we all have to abide by agreed-upon standards, the dictionary defines abuse as: "to treat in a harmful, injurious, or offensive way." I don't believe my comment fits this definition — but "to each her own," jayabee52. As for my anonymous post: We are all anonymous online, aren't we? I am my comments — and that's all you need to know about me.

jayabee52 2011-08-27 16:38:44 -0500 Report

you asked ME for MY definition of abuse not the dictionary's. but what you said fit the dictionary's definition as well since what you said about being out of his gourd was offensive.

As far as us ALL being annon online, to the extent that I am not giving you my contact info that is true. OTOH you can go to my profile and look me up. You don't grant the same courtesy. You can complain about me by my screen name to the authorities on DC. I can only complain about "this person who is annonymous". That's why I don't like criticisms from annonymous people.

Anonymous 2011-08-27 16:42:01 -0500 Report

That's fair enough. But you've spent all this time discussing whether I was polite enough or not, but nothing about the content of my comment. Are we discussing diabetes and helping people get off their drugs — or Emily Post etiquette?

jayabee52 2011-12-03 19:08:53 -0600 Report

That is a false dichotomy! Helping people off of (legal) drugs verses Emily post

As I reread these exchanges I realized that Art from Edison has not come back for 3 months now. Perhaps the way you said what you wrote caused him to think that this was not a safe or pleasant place to share his views.

About the content of your comment I happen to be mainly in agreement with your viewpoint.

Look at the terms of use (found at the bottom of the page) and read especially paragraph 6 (from the top) sub section (ii). The words offensive and abusive occur there as speech which violate the terms of use. I COULD (but will not) red flag the post I think is offensive and if the administration agrees with me your whole post goes away.

I want to be a good citizen of DC and if that means I disagree with someone I do it respectfully. Perhaps like Emily Post would. And if it can be humorous at the same time, so much the better.

Type1Lou 2011-08-28 14:34:55 -0500 Report

What's wrong with Emily Post etiquette? We could all benefit from living in a kinder, gentler world.

Vaysmeer 2011-08-27 13:59:28 -0500 Report

What crap! Unless you drink gallons of anything, you probably won't notice anything! I remember when first diagnosed with Diabetes, a nutritionist gave me the story at the time in the 1990's that sugar was the big problem but now as everyone know it's carbohydrates! Moderation in anything is the key! As Kreskin said, "You'll never get out of this world alive (unless you're and Astronaut!).

azdutchman 2011-08-27 13:46:06 -0500 Report

I never really liked diet sodas. Years ago, when I decided to cut way back on alcohol, I started drinking club soda with a twist of lime and/or lemon. Hey, I still looked cool and there was no hangover. And I didn't get drunk and make an ass of myself. Well . . . not as often. I found club soda with a twist to be very refreshing and continue to order it when we are out for the evening or at home, instead of a Manhattan or Scotch and soda. I like to use fresh lemons and limes. It gives it a nicer flavor.

Cathy12345 2011-04-25 12:08:13 -0500 Report

I've done quite a bit of research because I love my diet coke and although everyone seems to have their own views, I have found little to no scientific proof that diet soda is harmful. The only think I do believe is that drinking diet soda sends a message to your brain that you are getting something to eat, and you don't. This may make you crave something and eat more which could cause weight gain. Just being aware of this, you are able to prevent the slight urge you may have to eat more and it won't be a problem. It may cause a headache, although it doesn't in myself. I've quit for long periods of time to see. My conclusion…I love it and drink it in moderation, while making sure I also drink plenty of water as dehydration can cause those irritating headaches! Just my own experience and thoughts. Harvard research has found no link between diet soda and diabetes.

cherokee925 2011-04-25 10:53:06 -0500 Report

I am not sure if it is true about diet soda for me I do limit drinking them I mostly drink water, homemade ice tea, kombucha are my drinks.

aldrich0405 2009-09-26 09:34:47 -0500 Report

What a sad, sad day if this is true! :o( Life without diet soda? I think not!

Anonymous 2011-08-27 14:38:48 -0500 Report

There are some people who actually say: "If I can't have my (fill in the blank: sweets, diet sodas, cake, etc.), I don't want to live. Then they begin to lose their vision, limbs, and heart function to diabetes — and its too late to go back. I feel sorry for you.

Wendy Mac
Wendy Mac 2009-09-21 13:44:57 -0500 Report

I only started drinking diet soda after I was diagnosed, but drank quite alot of it. But with all I have heard recently, I have cut back considerably. I am drinking so much more water now and do not feel so hungry all the time, as well as most of my headaches have receded. Most diet sodas have too much sodium and that does not help either. So this can only help me in the long run.

dawn kelly
dawn kelly 2009-09-20 22:56:50 -0500 Report

i would really like to know the answer to that question i am thinking of switching my son to diet and i do drink diet since i was diagnosed

Anonymous 2011-08-27 14:41:09 -0500 Report

Read Dr. Blaylock's book: Exicitotoxins: The Taste That Kills. Giving your child diet soda is one of the worst things you can do. Aspatame is solidly linked to brain damage — especuially in developing brains and brains of the elderly. Please educate yourself beofre making a decsion like this.

Kerstin Lujan
Kerstin Lujan 2011-08-27 14:06:47 -0500 Report

I googled aspatame & phenylalanine (commonly found in diet drinks)… very interesting- I occasionally drink diet snapple, but water is best for me

Turtle 2009-09-19 00:38:16 -0500 Report

I do not know. I drink it some but I drink lots of water too. I have heard one can gain more weight on diet soda than regular. I try not to drink too much diet soda…but it is refreshing at times.

2catty 2009-09-18 21:51:44 -0500 Report

Never had a diet soda effect my blood sugar in a bad way. I drink 4-6 a day and am not gonna quit. My Dr. said as long as I don't drink the ones with caffeine because I am on beta blockers I am good. Nothing is good for ya anymore. I read yesterday whole grains was bad for ya. Ummm ok. Still gonna eat it. Cause I know it ain't true.

sweetie67 2009-09-18 21:26:20 -0500 Report

Yeah well I drink alot of ice tea and I use stevia for the sweetner and I really don't want to stop drinking it. When I heard about the diet pop being just like regular sugar I wonderd if that goes for my tea to. If it does I may as well just give up because then I will pretty much have nothing anymore that I like the taste of to drink, so for now I am ignoring what they are saying!

timmer1950 2009-09-18 20:57:56 -0500 Report

My Dr. told me NOT to drink the dark colored soda's such as diet coke or diet pepsi. reason being the carmel coloring turns to sugar. I'm constantly thirsty so I drink diet sierra mist

jayabee52 2009-09-26 10:40:41 -0500 Report

to timmer 1950: I was told by Dr not to drink the dark colored sodas also but it was not because of the carmel coloring. It was because of the phosphorus — look at list of ingredients — anything with phosphorus in it is problematic. That is because my kidneys are compromised. Kidneys are easily compromised with diabetes, so it's best to avoid anything with phosphorus or potassium in it.

Someone (can't remember who ) also noted that whole grains are not good to eat. I have been told to avoid whole grains because they are too high in potassium or phosphorus (can't remember which right now) and are to be avoided.

Same thing for cheese. I am supposed to avoid it because of my kidneys.

lisaw 2009-09-17 07:01:17 -0500 Report

I hope it is not true because I love my Cherry Vanilla diet Dr Pepper. I Drink about 2 everyday.

donnadee 2009-09-16 20:41:51 -0500 Report

I don't know, I've heard good and bad, but I'm sick of hearing don't drink this and don't eat that. It's not wine, it's non-alcoholic, it's not beer. So I'm drinking it. LOL

nvoutback 2009-09-16 20:33:17 -0500 Report

I drink 1 diet soda a day for years, but I also gain a ton of weight from eatting junk food. So it's hard to say if it is true or not. Since I found out about having pre-diabetes in June I have lost 30 bs. and I just got my latest test results back and I have gone down 22 points on my glucose. I will seeing my doctor next and I'll be asking him about it.

Next Discussion: Recovering from a low... »