Softdrinks: Bad Influence for Our Bones, Teeth, and Body Weight
Coca-Cola’s advertisements typically radiate happiness and refreshment. In one of its latest ads, it shows its product as a factory of happiness. Soda advertisements can be very effective in psychologically conditioning people to think that softdrinks are equal to a happy and beautiful life. It sends a message that when people drink soda, they are drinking their way to a happier life. In reality, softdrinks wreak havoc to people’s health and lives. Sodas, as several scientific studies prove, are not good for us at all.
Softdrinks may seem like a refreshing way to ease a hot day, but their short-term benefits cannot outweigh their long-term destructive effects. People should not drink softdrinks anymore, because of its bad influence on our bones, teeth, and body weight. Softdrinks drill cavities into our teeth. Poonam Jain, director of community dentistry at Southern Illinois University School of Dental Medicine says: “Soda eats up and dissolves the tooth enamel” (Kanigel). Jain examined several sodas by measuring their pH level, which is an indication of acidity. Water has pH of 7; sugar-sweetened sodas range at 2.
5; while diet sodas tally at 3. 2 (Kanigel). Jain stresses that soda’s acidity is even worse for our teeth than solid sugar in candy, because soda corrodes our teeth enamel, which hastens the tooth decay process by making it easier for bacteria to penetrate our teeth (Kanigel). A number of studies, including a University of Michigan investigation of dental checkup data from the Third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, back up that adults who imbibe “three or more sodas a day have up to 62% more decayed, missing, and filled teeth than those who drink less” (Kanigel).
Softdrinks are good for sipping, and at times, it seems better to let the taste simmer in our mouth. People do not know that sipping soda actually makes it harder for their saliva to go back to neutral levels (Kanigel). Jain emphasizes that “This is particularly an issue for people who drink several sodas a day, because they never give their saliva a chance to neutralize” (Kanigel). Clearly, sodas destroy our chances for that beaming close-up smile. Softdrinks eat away our bones too. Several studies showed that softdrinks have been correlated to lower bone density.
In the 1950s, children downed 3 cups of milk for every 1 cup of sugary drinks; now, it has been reversed, because children drink 3 cups of sweetened drinks for every cup of milk (Kanigel). A number of experts connect softdrinks with osteoporosis, because people drink milk less, when they drink more softdrinks (Kanigel). The study by Jean Mayer of the USDA Human Nutrition Research Center, on the other hand, does not find a connection between drinking softdrinks and drinking milk, although their study also shows that cola consumption decreases bone density for older women (Tufts University Health & Nutrition Letter 1).
Girls are also being negatively affected by sodas. In a study of 460 adolescent students in 2000, the Harvard School of Public Health discovered that “girls who drank carbonated soft drinks were three times as likely to break their arms and legs as those who consumed other drinks” (Tufts University Health & Nutrition Letter 1). The study underscores that dark drinks seem to be more health-aversive than fruit-flavored drinks, because the study show that girls who imbibed colas were five times more prone to breaking their arms and legs in their adolescent years than girls who stopped drinking soda(Tufts University Health & Nutrition Letter 1).
Grace Wyshak, PhD, a biostatistician and the study’s primary researcher, suggests that something in colas hold back the body’s capability to use calcium (Tufts University Health & Nutrition Letter 1). She is alarmed that this will make girls more susceptible to fractures and bone problems in later life (Tufts University Health & Nutrition Letter 1). Indeed, sipping soda can be similar to chipping our bones away. Drinking sodas add up to our waistline. Olsen and Heitmann and Vartanian et al. review literature on the relationship between obesity and softdrinks. Majority of the studies prove that drinking sodas can be linked to obesity.
Pereira also examines the evidence that links obesity and softdrinks. She concludes that several studies illustrate that there is a relationship between drinking sweet drinks like soda and higher body mass index. Marr also mentions studies that blame softdrinks for many children being obese or overweight. David S. Ludwig, MD, PhD, director of the obesity program at Children’s Hospital Boston agrees with Marr and states: “In my estimation, sugary beverages are one of the two leading environmental causes of obesity, perhaps second only to TV viewing in the magnitude of its effect” (Kanigel).
In 2001, he and his peers at the Harvard School of Public Health provided strong evidence that linked obesity and softdrinks (Kanigel). They followed 548 teens for 19 months and discovered that teenagers who drank more sodas were more overweight than those who did not (Kanigel). Another study suggests that fructose in softdrinks can stimulate appetite, which makes it easier for people to get fatter (Kanigel). Softdrinks are fatteners. On the other hand, people who say that softdrinks is a cheap and easy way to feel refreshed want to defend their sodas.
The reaction to this is that people can also drink cold water and feel refreshed. They can even drink lemon juice and dash it with honey, and they get less calories and fructose. Soda producers also assert that soda provides funding for many education programs. Yes, soda does that, but how about the bad influence of softdrinks? Childhood obesity cannot ethically fund education. Softdrinks are bad influence in many ways; they are bad for our bones, teeth, and weight. They increase risks for a number of health problems. They are not what they want to be- to bring happiness to people.
How can people be in high spirits, when they have bone problems, tooth decay, diabetes, or they are overweight? The ads got it all wrong. Sodas can make people unhappy. Works cited Kanigel, Rachele. “It Raises Diabetes Risk And Robs Bone. It’s Wrecking Our Teeth. And It’s Making Us Fat. The Culprit? Soda. ” Prevention 58. 10 (2006): 160-207. Marr, Liz. “Soft Drinks, Childhood Overweight, and the Role of Nutrition Educators: Let’s Base Our Solutions on Reality and Sound Science. ” Journal of Nutrition Education & Behavior 36. 5 (2004): 258-265. Olsen, N. J. and B. L. Heitmann. “Intake of Calorically Sweetened Beverages and Obesity.
” Obesity Reviews 10. 1 (2009): 68-75. Pereira, M. A. “The Possible Role of Sugar-Sweetened Beverages in Obesity Etiology: A Review of the Evidence. ” International Journal of Obesity 30 (2006): S28-S36. Tufts University Health & Nutrition Letter. “Cola May Up Osteoporosis Risk for Older Women. ” Tufts University Health & Nutrition Letter 24. 11 (2007): 1-2. Vartanian, Lenny R. , Schwartz, Marlene B. , and Kelly D. Brownell. “Effects of Soft Drink Consumption on Nutrition and Health: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. ” American Journal of Public Health 97. 4 (2007): 667-675.