Sprite is a popular lemon and lime flavored colorless soft drink. It can be enjoyed in baking, cocktails or simply when you’re thirsty. But is sprite bad for you?
Is Sprite Bad For You
While Sprite is better than many other sodas and is free of caffeine, you still need to drink it in moderation. Like other soda drinks, Sprite contains unhealthy ingredients such as sodium citrate, sodium benzoate, and high fructose corn syrup.
Sprite’s Unhealthy Ingredients
High fructose corn syrup is a processed sugar. There are 38 grams of sugar and carbohydrates in one serving of Sprite. Excessive consumption of sugar can lead to all sorts of health problems including, for example, weight gain, colon cancer, gout, and diabetes.
It can also quickly lead to tooth decay. Excessive intake of citric acid can erode tooth enamel, and is generally bad for the body.
Sodium benzoate is a preservative derived from petroleum. It could lead to problems such as irritation in the mouth and hives. It is thought it might also cause DNA damage. It has been found that neurodegenerative diseases (like Alzheimer’s) are linked to such damage. Sprite also contains sodium. Consuming too much sodium can lead to health issues like high blood pressure.
Sprite’s Only Beneficial Ingredient
Similar to other sugary drinks, the only ingredient in Sprite that is good for you is the water. As we all know, it is essential that we stay hydrated throughout the day. The water in Sprite and other sodas is carbonated. Many people find that carbonated water can help sooth the stomach when one is suffering from nausea.
What About Diet Sprite?
While drinking Diet Sprite cuts out sugar consumption and its possible effects, the artificial sweeteners used in it present many serious health concerns of their own. Additionally, Diet Sprite has an equal amount of citric acid that can lead to tooth erosion when consumed in large quantities over a long period of time.
Possible Side Effects of Sprite
Gout is a type of arthritis. People with gout tend to suffer from the sudden onset of attacks of swelling, stiffness, and burning pain in certain joints (such as the big toe). People who have had gout for a long period of time can suffer damage to their tissues, tendons, and joints. Gout is more common in men than women.
Gout occurs when the blood has an excessive amount of uric acid. Having too much uric acid in the blood can cause hard crystals to form in the joints. People at the highest risk of developing gout are those who eat large amounts of fish and meat that contains high level of purines ( a type of chemical), those who drink excessive alcohol, and those who are overweight. People who take diuretics (water pills) for any reason also tend to be at greatest risk.
Very commonly, one of the first signs of gout is sharp pain, redness, tenderness, and/or swelling in one or both of the big toes. The same symptoms in joints such as your knees, ankles, and feet can occur. The length of a gout attack can vary from just a few days to a number of weeks. Attacks of gout are hard to predict, and some people may not get another attack for a long period of time, even years.
If you think you have gout, you must see your doctor. Damage to the joints can occur even when pain is not present.
Type 2 Diabetes
Type 2 diabetes is a condition that usually develops in adulthood (although it is becoming increasingly more common in childhood because of heightened levels of childhood obesity). Type 2 diabetes adversely affects the manner in which the body metabolizes glucose (sugar). The body either fails to make enough insulin, or does not respond to insulin as it should.
Type 2 diabetes cannot be cured but can be successfully managed. Risk factors for type 2 diabetes include weight; a tendency for the body to store fat in the abdominal area rather than elsewhere); prediabetes (a condition in which you have levels of sugar in your blood that exceed what is considered normal but are not high enough to be diabetes); age (it is most common in people over 45); race (people from certain ethnic backgrounds such as, for example, African Americans, Asian Americans, Hispanics, and Native Americans) are more susceptible to develop type 2 diabetes than others; family history; and inactivity.
Acid erosion of the teeth occurs when the tooth enamel is slowly broken down by overconsumption of acidic substances (such as citric acid) over long periods of time. Acid erosion makes the teeth much more susceptible to dental decay and other problems than they would be otherwise.
Drinking too much Sprite can easily lead to weight gain, and eventually to becoming overweight or even obese. Being overweight or obese puts you at greater risk for developing a wide range of worrying health problems including, for example, type 2 diabetes and certain kinds of cancer.
Being overweight or obese puts unnecessary strain on the body and makes it more difficult for it to function as it should. This means that people who are overweight could be argued to be at greater risk of developing and being more severely affected than they would be if at a normal weight by an even greater variety of conditions.
If you are overweight or obese, seek to reduce your calorie intake and boost your exercise regimen.
Better Alternatives to Sprite
“Sprite Nutrition Information”, http://www.livestrong.com/article/327176-sprite-nutrition-information
“Obesity and overweight”, http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs311/en