Think you're avoiding weight gain by choosing diet soda? Think again.
A new study from the University of Texas reveals that drinking diet soda could still lead to weight gain. The 10-year study found that those who drank at least two diet sodas a day had a six-times-greater waist circumference at the end of the study than those who didn't drink diet soda at all.
The study is not the first to link diet sodas to weight gain: in 2005, the American Diabetes Association released results of a study that showed that every can of diet soda increased a person's risk of becoming overweight by 41 percent.
Researchers aren't exactly sure why, but one theory is that the artificial sweeteners used in the soda could be the culprit. Sweeteners in diet soda could affect how the body metabolizes insulin, causing a person to crave more sweets.
A study released in 2010 underscores the point, finding that artificial sweeteners confuse the brain on how to process them.
Nutritionists say if you are trying to find a sugar alternative, natural sweeteners such Stevia extract are a safe choice, as they are not derived from artificial chemicals.
Some nutrition experts also point to diet sodas as a symptom of the problem rather than the problem itself; a person might turn to diet sodas because they struggle with their weight already, and not make necessary diet adjustments in other areas.
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