Water, yes. Soft drinks, no!

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The Pagasa warns the public of hotter days ahead, and “…to protect themselves against possible heatstroke as scorching temperatures are expected to prevail in the county this month…”

Summertime is here. Time to indulge in outdoor activities so that even those who have been sedentary the whole year round may be lured by the sunlight and sights of people at the Rizal Blvd walking or running that they themselves will take up some form of physical exercise in the outdoors.

In the summer, we find ourselves drinking more fluids. And feeling the need to drink something cold and refreshing, which will you have, water or soft drink?

Clark Bartram, whom some people call “America’s Most Trusted Fitness Professional” provides interesting information regarding this question, and cites several reasons why it is better to drink water than soft drinks. Here is a summary of his article appearing in the internet and with additional information I had gleaned from the Wikipedia.

Soft drinks steal water from the body because they work like diuretics that take away more water than what the soft drinks provide to the body. For every glass of soft drinks consumed, one needs to drink 8 to 12 glasses of water to replace the water lost In ingesting soft drinks.

Soft drinks don’t quench your thirst nor meet your body’s need for water. Lack of water in the body can lead to a condition called chronic cellular dehydration which weakens the body and its immune system, leading to a host of diseases.

Soft drinks are made with purified water and contain high levels of phosphates that take away from the body important minerals such as magnesium and calcium. The former is important to proper heart function and the latter to the prevention of osteoporosis. Most vitamins cannot perform their function without the presence of minerals.

Rust from a car’s bumper and other metal surfaces can be removed with soft drinks. Imagine what it can do to the digestive tract and the rest of the body.

Soft drinks contain high amounts of sugar which can cause the pancreas to produce an abundance of insulin and leads to what is called “sugar crash” or “glucose crash”, characterized by “drowsiness, a sluggish mood, and that weak feeling that makes it hard to even get out of your chair…” (Wikipedia). Chronic elevation and depletion of sugar and insulin is a precursor to diabetes and other imbalance-related disease…particularly disruptive to growing children that can lead to life-long health problems.”

Soft drinks (and caffeine) severely interfere with digestion, virtually shutting down the digestive process. This means that your body is essentially taking in no nutrients from the food you may have just eaten, or even that which you ate hours earlier. French fries ingested with soft drinks could take weeks to digest, and “there is arguably nothing worse a person can put in his body.”

Diet soft drinks contain Aspartame, a sugar substitute for brand names like NutraSweet, Equal, Spoonful and Equal-Measure, discovered accidentally by James Schlatter, a chemist of G.D. Searle Co. Aspartame accounts for over 75 percent of the adverse reaction to food additives reported by the US FDA. Many of these reactions are very serious including seizures and death. According to researchers and physicians studying the adverse effects of aspartame, chronic illnesses can be triggered or worsened by ingesting aspartame such as brain tumors, multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, chronic fatigue syndrome, Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s mental retardation, birth defects, and diabetes. (Wikipedia).

Soft drinks are extremely acidic and diseases flourish in an acidic environment. Consider the following: (a) the human body exists at a pH of about 7.0, soft drinks have a pH of about 2.5, which means that when you ingest soft drinks, you are putting something inside your body which is a thousand times more acidic than what your body is; (b) body pH of cancer and arthritis patients are low, the sicker the person, the lower is the body pH; (b) soft drinks sitting on the shelf too long can eat through the liner of aluminum cans containing the fluid and Alzheimer patients who have been autopsied all have high levels of aluminum in their brains; (c) soft drinks deposit acid waste in the body which accumulates over time in the joints and around the organs.

Bartram concludes his article with the following: “Soft drinks are the worst thing that you can possibly put in your body. Don’t even think of taking a sip of a soft drink when you are sick with a cold, flu or something worse. It will only make it that much harder for your body to fight (the illness).”

How much water should you drink in a day? The Mayo Clinic recommends “that men drink about 13 cups and women 9 cups of total beverages a day… apart (from this advice) if you drink enough fluid so that you rarely feel thirsty and produce 1.5 liters (6.3 cups) or more of colorless or slightly yellow urine a day, your fluid intake is probably adequate. “

By the way, there is ample research evidence to show that drinking adequate water helps in the effort to reduce weight. Overweight readers, check this out.

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