Yesterday was it. I'm quitting Diet Pepsi.
I'm doing this in support of our "Soda Free Summer" campaign, and also in light of some new information about what sweet sodas actually do to you...and by "you", I mean "me."
First, you may have heard recently on the news about Santa Clara County's ongoing effort to convince more families to go soda-free this summer. What you may not know is that the VMC Foundation is the fiscal agent of this campaign, working with Kaiser, our public health department and the Bay Area Nutrition and Physical Activity Collaborative.
The plan is simple: Educate folks about how sodas fuel the raging childhood obesity epidemic, can lead to diabetes and oh-by-the-way, have no nutritional value. A 20-oz bottle of Coke has 17 teaspoons of sugar! As Santa Clara County Board President Ken Yeager said on the news earlier this week, "It's like opening your mouth and spooning in 17 teaspoons of sugar. Nobody in their right mind is going to do that."
No, of course they wouldn't (but they do). "But Chris," I hear you saying, "You said you were giving up DIET sodas...they have no calories and no sugar!"
A Fair point. HOWEVER...it turns out that diet sodas have their own problems, beyond not really knowing what the artificial sweeteners do long-term. "When you drink that much ultra-sweet soda," explains Dr. Rami Keisari, VMC pediatrician, "it seems your body gets used to and craves more sweets...and not just desserts, but also starches. They can make it very hard to lose weight."
Now THAT is a problem I understand! And I know it's true for me - I practically live on carbohydrates, and I can't seem to stop.
So I'm putting down the diet sodas, which I've guzzled since High School. I'll let you know if it helps me lose weight, and if you care to come along with me on this journey, let me know if it works for you. Together, let's make it a SODA-FREE SUMMER!