American Osteopathic Association

Advancing the distinctive philosophy and practice of osteopathic medicine

Breaking Up with Your Daily Soft Drink Habit

While we may never come to a consensus on whether to call it soda or pop, heavy consumption of soft drinks can lead to health complications.

"Excessive soft drink consumption, especially among children, is a serious problem in our nation and can lead to an increased risk for various health conditions," explains Rob Danoff, DO, an osteopathic family physician in Philadelphia.

Doctors of Osteopathic Medicine, or DOs, look beyond your symptoms to understand how lifestyle and environmental factors affect your wellbeing. They listen and partner with you to help you get healthy and stay well.

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Health Impacts of Soft Drinks 

Eliminating sugary beverages from your diet can help prevent health problems that could arise from prolonged soft drink consumption, including:

  • Lowered bone mass density and bone fractures in children. Decreased intake of milk and excessive consumption of sugary carbonated beverages can lower bone marrow density and increase the risk of developing osteoporosis later in life.

  • Weight gain and correlating diseases, such as diabetes.

  • Erosion of teeth enamel and stomach lining. The phosphoric acid in carbonated soda strips teeth of enamel, leaving them brittle and sensitive to pain. Many acids in soda are also known to exacerbate gastroesophageal reflux disease and ulcers.

Beating Your Soft Drink Habit

Looking to break away from your daily soft drink habit? Dr. Danoff suggests the following tips: 

  • Fill a large bottle with water, and carry it with you so you have a healthy beverage at hand.

  • Flavor your water with lemon, cucumber slices, or pieces of ginger or mint.

  • Track your water and soda consumption every day until you have successfully removed soda from your diet. 

  • Set a goal for how many glasses of water you want to drink a day, and choose a reward for meeting that goal.

 

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