Coke Zero. Sprite Zero. Pepsi Max. Nearly all major fizzy drink manufacturing companies have introduced low-calorie substitutes to their famous products. Said to contain lesser calories per serving without compromising on taste and quality, the consumption of these beverages has seen an increase in recent years. As the Gen Z fitness boom continues to expand to more corners of the globe, companies have begun to steal a march on rivals to gain a larger market share. However, the question remains, is diet soda a healthier alternative, and should you consume it?

How is it different?

Promised to replicate the taste of the sodas we all know and love, but without added preservatives, diet sodas have become increasingly popular in the lifestyle of the average consumer. Those who are more conscious about their health, yet also share a love for the product, tend to resort to drinking diet soda instead as an alternative.

According to the manufacturers, the sugary taste of the drinks is obtained by utilizing artificial sweeteners that replicate the original product. Many manufacturers claim that their product is ideal for those looking to lose weight and promote a healthy lifestyle.

Why can it be harmful?

It is common due to a growing body of work that the consumption of sodas and other fizzy drinks can lead to health complications. This is due in part to the large sugar intake that is present within each serving of the product. Whereas diet soda can claim to eliminate those risks that may not always be the case.

Research has shown that the overconsumption of diet sodas can lead to complications such as metabolic issues and heart problems. Some believe that such risks come about because those who regularly consume diet beverages are those with underlying health conditions as well as those looking to lose weight. As such, their immune system is also more susceptible to greater risk.

The release of dopamine as a result of drinking diet soda drinks may cause an increase in demand for further consumption. This overconsumption can result in damaged blood vessels as well as inflammation.

Should you have them?

In short: no. Diet Soda, however healthy it may be, still contains traces of sugar which could be harmful to the human body. To adopt a cleaner, healthier lifestyle, it is important to replace sodas and fizzy drinks entirely with healthy beverages such as water and juices rich in vitamins.

However, if you find yourself tied to consuming large amounts of sweetened fizzy drinks, you can switch to diet sodas to decrease your sugar intake significantly. Switching from regular drinks to diet drinks can have health benefits yet they too are only a stepping-stone to finally achieving the true goal, and that is quitting sodas once and for all.