Metabolic Syndrome and Soft Drink Consumption
Regular soft drinks contain sugar, which adds calories to your diet. Sugary drinks also raise insulin levels. This causes you to put on more visceral fat—fat deep inside, around the abdomen and other organs. Too much visceral fat can raise certain blood proteins, and that can lead to metabolic syndrome.
When insulin is high after a sugary drink, it may increase hunger. That hunger may lead to overeating. You might even reach for another soda, thus continuing the cycle.
Even diet soda can be a problem. Studies have shown that drinking diet soda on a regular basis can actually lead to weight gain. The exact reason is still unknown. It might be that diet soda triggers the insulin response, or it might be that people tend to drink diet soda along with sugary foods that have this effect.
Try to stop drinking or drink less of both regular and diet soft drinks. If you drink soda, pair it with raw fruits and vegetables or nuts. The fiber in these foods can help control the insulin response.
- Grantham, Paula, RN, BSN
- newMentor board-certified, academically affiliated clinician