Insulin spikes from soda may be causing havoc in your bloodstream. Everyone, it’s official: Drinking sugary beverages such as soda leads to weight gain and all the health problems associated with it, including diabetes. A recent study examined sugar sweetened beverage intake and its relationship to developing metabolic syndrome and diabetes. The results were conclusive; those who consumed sugar sweetened beverages on a regular basis were 20 percent more likely to have metabolic syndrome and 26 percent more likely to develop diabetes.
How does drinking soda lead to diabetes?
Diabetes is a very serious illness caused by excess sugar (glucose) in the blood and subsequent improper insulin response. Insulin is a hormone that regulates glucose level in the blood. After you drink a soda, the refined sugar causes your blood sugar to elevate rapidly, and that’s where insulin comes in. The insulin is released (by the pancreas) to lower your blood sugar level back to normal after a meal, or sugary beverage. In normal, healthy individuals this happens every time. However, repeated, drastic spikes in blood sugar may lead to two things: the pancreas will slowly reduce insulin production and the cells in our bodies slowly become insulin resistant, meaning they just stop letting the insulin do its job. This means that all that sugar just stays in your blood, which can lead to myriad health problems including diabetes. Diabetes can lead to all sorts of other health issues, including blindness, kidney disease and permanent nerve damage.
So to reduce your risk of developing diabetes, follow this advice:
- Eat more whole grains. Whole grains have lots of fiber that helps regulate blood sugar levels.
- Drink zero-calories beverages such as water, tea and club soda
- Regular exercise. Thirty to 60 minutes of moderate exercise, five days a week can reduce your risk of developing diabetes.
- Maintain a healthy weight. If overweight, losing 5 to 10 percent of your body weight can lower risk of diabetes.
Finally, check out our top 10 Super Foods to control diabetes.