Like any other soda, coke is loaded with sugar, and that is bad news for everyone – sugar simply isn’t part of a healthy life; besides, it’s terrible when you are dieting or striving to get in shape. How about Coke Zero though? It’s the product that claims to have no sugar, but taste just as sweet. Will it not get you fat?
The truth about the calories in Coke Zero
Since Coke Zero has no sugar, it has no calories from sugar itself. That is logical and correct, but one shouldn’t be concerned only with the sugar in soda. To achieve the sweetness and taste, the manufacturer uses other chemicals, some of these not being properly researched yet. What food scientists can tell, though, is that some of these substances in your drink can’t be digested by the human body. When the body cannot break them down, it eliminates those. This means no nutrition for you, no calories to store or to consume. Therefore, it is perfectly possible to have a drink that gives you no calories. However, Coke Zero has artificial sweeteners that can be metabolized. These are highly concentrated – you don’t need a full spoon of it to make the beverage sweet. It only takes a drop. Thus, you’re getting far fewer calories from such sweeteners. Hence the number is very close to zero, the company can market it as “zero calories”.
Why you’d better stay away from Coke Zero?
What nutrition and health experts say is that soda, such as Coke Zero, can be dangerous to consumers. These use sugar substitutes that can be even worse than sugar itself. Coke Zero is made with Acesulfame K and Aspartame. The first one can’t be digested and therefore doesn’t provide any calories; the latter has a very, very low amount. Aspartame is a carcinogen and you won’t want to be consuming it on a frequent basis, though. Too many people out there are proudly buying their diet coke, thinking they must be doing something great for their bodies, but this is far from true.
Understanding your needs
There are times when sugar and calories in general aren’t bad at all, but quite necessary, even when you’re on a diet. Imagine a situation when you are training and you’re feeling drained. Something sweet and energizing or anything with carbohydrates will replenish you and keep you going for a longer while. In that case, you could reach for a sugary soda, because it provides you with calories from carbs. Your body breaks down these and uses them immediately, to produce the needed energy. When you are in dire need of energy, it is safe to eat or drink something that can provide it. A product like diet Coke will not be able to satisfy this craving because it has no calories you can burn to produce energy.
Now that you understand how this works, when it can be beneficial and when it can’t be, you can start taking better decisions. Match this knowledge with your personal needs and tailor your diet accordingly.
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