Category: Carbonated drinks
Our practice has long discouraged the consumption of diet soda and carbonated sugary beverages for anyone, but especially our weight loss surgical patients. These products’ detrimental effects on bone health, gut microbiome, increase appetite, diarrhea, inhibited weight loss and regain shouldn’t be ignored. In addition, in the situation of limited space post Bariatric surgery, a WLS patient needs nutrient rich, protein foods. These beverages provide no nutritional value.
In addition, these products are also not recommended for non-WLS patients. Oral health, peak in insulin levels, increase weight gain, increased Type 2 DM, and diarrhea are also issues that can effect patients in addition to the above issues.
Our practice, as well as a recent article on Medical News Today Written by Jon Johnson, encourages people to:
“Saying goodbye to diet soda
Soda, whether regular or diet, is a dietary waste. Sodas have little nutrients, and have a long list of side effects. For people with diabetes, diet soda has been associated with weight gain and symptoms of metabolic syndrome. Some sweeteners in diet soda even cause sugar and insulin spikes in the blood.”
We encourage the use of Stevia, which is a natural sweetener, instead of other artificial sweeteners. Stevia is a herb type plant with leave that can be used for sweetening. It has been used for many years in other countries and cultures. It contains Magnesium, Potassium, zinc, Vitamins A, B3 and C as well as fiber.
A past blog post on Carbonated Beverages and Weight loss Surgery .
Most of you may have heard me emphasize the importance of adequate hydration after surgery. At the same time I would be the first one to admit that drinking plain water gets old very quickly. I also do not recommend carbonated drinks (diet or regular). Most commercial products such as Crystal light also contain artificial sweeteners which in my opinion are to be avoided. Please note that there is extensive information here on my website on this topic.
One of the most benign looking drinks may be the refreshers that are available at Starbucks. An example of it is Very Berry Hibiscus Starbucks Refreshers™ Beverage. It contains 21 g of sugar and 100 calories in a 24 ounce serving size. Note that it also contains 70-85mg of caffeine.
Having some of these drinks on occasion will do no harm. However I would not recommend these drinks to replace water as means of hydration. High content of Caffeine can result in oxalate crystal formation. This predisposes a post weight loss surgical patient to much higher chance of kidney stone formations.
The consumption of carbonated drinks is discouraged after weight loss surgery. In fact, there is a wealth of information that documents the detrimental health effects of carbonated drinks for each individual. These include osteoporosis, obesity, and premature dental decay, just to name a few. Indirectly, carbonated drinks have been found to increase risk of stroke and Cardiac events. There are studies that show a 48% increase in heart attack and stroke rates for individuals who drink diet sodas vs. those who drink it rarely or not at all.
There is also no health benefit to diet carbonated drinks. In fact, there are animal studies that show that rats who consume no-calorie sweeteners found in diet sodas experience an increased appetite (Susan Swithers, PhD- 2004).
There are also other factors to consider. The carbonation comes from a mixture of dissolved gasses that are released when the container is opened. The Carbon Dioxide gas dissolved in the drinks, amongst others, can distend the stomach. Potentially, stretching your stomach. There is also acidity that needs to be corrected by the body. This has been shown to result in changes in the bacterial population in the GI track, resulting in significant bloating and reduced absorption of nutrients.
Calcium loss is caused by the leaching of the calcium from the bones with carbonated drinks, which can cause osteoporosis.