Why Sugar Harms the Heart
Sugary drinks have all the same ill effects on the heart as highly refined and processed carbohydrates. Research also shows that your body does not compute the calories you ingest in liquid form in the same way as it does the calories you take in from solid foods. So if you add a soda to your meal, you are likely to eat about the same amount of calories from the rest of your food as if you drank water instead. The soda calories are just “added on.” In addition to the other harms of highly refined and processed carbohydrates, sugary drinks also increase your chances of weight gain.
According to Harvard Health Publications, Americans are drinking much more of their daily calories in addition to eating them. A lot of the extra liquid calories are in the form of sugary drinks; especially sodas, sweetened fruit drinks, sports drinks and ‘flavored’ water. A 12-ounce can of soda contains the equivalent of 10 teaspoons of table sugar. Diet sodas may be sugar-free and low in calories, but they have zero nutritional value.
Recently published by International Study of Macro/Micronutrients and Blood Pressure (INTERMAP), “people who routinely drink sugared sodas or juices are more likely to have higher blood pressure and weigh more than those who don’t consume these beverages”.
Water is the ideal beverage — 100% hydration with zero calories or additives! If you want something more flavorful than water, try mixing 3 or 4 parts of water with 1 part of real juice, such as fresh squeezed lemons, oranges and limes. Strawberries, peaches, melons, etc. can be mixed in your blender with a little water to get it going. Store the fruit “paste” in an air tight container in your refrigerator and add 1 or 2 teaspoons to a 12 oz glass of chilled water. Dee-lish!
Sources: HarvardHealthPublications.com and INTERMAP