Category Archives: Think Behind The Box

The Truth Behind “Health Drinks”

Hello parents!

How have you all been? I know you and I have shared a formal yet loving e-relationship and it breaks my heart to do this to you, but there is no other way. After today, you won’t want to stay in any form of contact with me… ever. I wish there was a way around this… I really do. But,as fate would have it (and as it has turned out to be the case multiple times in the past) – I’m here to expose the crap that you are (mostly unknowingly) doing to your kids and you’re here to, well, hate me, live in denial for a bit and eventually come around and thank me for being the ass that I am.

So, take care you. It was fun while it lasted. And by the way, raj.hbfser@gmail.com is where you want to send your hate mails and that will be the same ID you would have to email later to apologize, thank etc.

– – – – – x – – – – –

As we all know, health drinks like Complan, Bournvita, Boost and Horlicks are common ‘health food drinks’ in most houses today as they has been for a few decades now. That’s just awesome right? I mean, kids don’t get much nutrition these days and, as a parent, making sure they get the required nutrients is at the top of your priority list I’m sure. You, parents, are of course super busy throughout the day with work and meeting, and health drinks manufactured by, well, someone somewhere, that provide kids with everything they need to grow into strong healthy adults, is definitely a convenient way of ensuring quality nutrition.

The Marketing

What is so good about these health drinks anyway? What do the good-hearted manufacturers say about these?

Complan is a trusted, fortified dietary supplement formulated to provide high quality nutrition. It provides a balanced mix of high-quality, essential protein, fat and carbohydrate to provide energy, as well as an extensive range of vitamins and minerals, and it provides a useful boost to energy even in small servings.

Drinking a mug of Horlicks is the natural choice when you want to relax before going to sleep, so you awake feeling refreshed and revived

Boost is the secret of winning energy!

And this is what you read on the boxes, hear them say on TV, read on papers etc and hence, this is what you know. As a result, you buy boxes and boxes of these each year and even force feed your kids to drink them. But do you know if these claims are true? Are these ‘health’ drinks truly healthy? It isn’t for nothing that these companies claim that their drinks are filled with health. Right? I mean, these companies are not going to blatantly lie to us are they?

Ummm… I don’t know. My guess is as good as yours really. I, too, was told that they’re very good for me and, since they were delicious, I drank (and ate) them in massive quantities! So why don’t we try and figure out the truth together. Mmmmkay?

The Truth

As a first and most basic step, let’s look into the ingredients of some of these health drinks.

Horlicks – Malted barley, milk solids, sugar, wheat flour, malted wheat, minerals, protein isolate, emulsifier, salt, acidity regulator, vitamins, natural color

Bournvita – Malt extract, sugar, cocoa solids, milk solids, caramel, liquid glucose, permitted emulsifiers, vitamins, minerals, raising agent, salt

Complan – Skimmed milk, lactose, vegetable oil, maltodextrin, sugar, glucose syrup, fat reduced cocoa powder, dextrose, flavourings, magnesium sulphate, thickener (xanthan gum), vitamin mix, mineral mix.

Boost – Malted barley, wheat flour, sugar, milk solids, minerals, colour, glucose, salt, acidity regulator, cocoa powder, vitamin, protein isolate, edible fiber, nature identical flavouring substances

A small ‘did you know’ before we go ahead an analyze these lists.

  • In any product, the ingredients need to be listed in the order of maximum composition. That is, the first ingredient is the most dominant ingredient followed by the second and then the third and so on.

So now let’s analyze these health drinks by looking at their ingredients from a slightly different perspective.

Product

What it contains

What it really contains

Horlicks Malted barley, milk solids, sugar, wheat flour, malted wheat, minerals, protein isolate, emulsifier, salt, acidity regulator, vitamins, natural color Grain, processed junk, sugar, grain, grain, artificial minerals, processed junk, junk, junk, salt, artificial vitamins, junk
Bournvita Malt extract, sugar, cocoa solids, milk solids, caramel, liquid glucose, permitted emulsifiers, vitamins, minerals, raising agent, salt Grain, sugar, processed junk, processed junk, sugar, sugar, junk, artificial vitamins, artificial minerals, junk, salt
Complan Skimmed milk, lactose, vegetable oil, maltodextrin, sugar, glucose syrup, fat reduced cocoa powder, dextrose, flavourings, magnesium sulphate, thickener (xanthan gum), vitamin mix, mineral mix. Processed junk, sugar, oxidizable unstable fat, sugar, sugar, sugar, processed junk, sugar, junk, junk, junk, artificial vitamins, artificial minerals
Boost Malted barley, wheat flour, sugar, milk solids, minerals, colour, glucose, salt, acidity regulator, cocoa powder, vitamin, protein isolate, edible fiber, nature identical flavouring substances Grain, grain, sugar, processed junk, artificial minerals, junk, sugar, junk, junk, junk, artificial vitamins, processed junk, junk, junk

And just so we’re clear

Why is protein isolate junk? Isn’t whey protein good for you?

Because they say protein isolate and not whey protein isolate. Anytime a food item is mentioned vaguely, there is a good chance (more than 100% that is), that the product is low quality crap. In this case, it probably is soy protein.

Why are raising agents and acidity regulators junk?

Because I don’t want my any kid to ingest anything that requires agents!

But aren’t grains good for health? I’ve read so much about grains being super nutritious!

Well, you walked into the wrong class buddy. This is Real Food For Smart People. Gullibility 101 is across the hall and How The Government Protects Me From The Truth is right next to it. But now that you are here, read this, this and this to learn more about grains and why they are, at best, a nutritionally poor food.

Now, you tell me

Do your kids need this? Are these “health” drinks? Does it make any sense whatsoever that you force your kids to drink this sugary shit? Shouldn’t you be ashamed of yourself for having done this all these days? Too harsh? I don’t think so. And here’s why…

I didn’t have to do any research whatsoever to get all this info. All I had to do was to pick up a tin/box of these health drinks and read the ingredients! All this is printed on the box… on every box! Go ahead and check… it is, at this very moment, sitting in your kitchen cabinet. Truth is, you just didn’t have either the brains or the time or both to read the ingredients before, during or after buying such heavily marketed processed “health” food or before, during or after pouring it down your and your kid’s mouth… every… single… day!

Still don’t get it?

For those of you who still don’t understand how big a (nutritional) crime it is to sell and feed kids with such crap, let’s look at this in yet another angle. Here are the ingredients of two very famous products.

Product A – Wheat flour, sugar, edible vegetable oil, cocoa solids, invert syrup, salt, raising agent, sugar, edible vegetable fat, emulsifier. And that really means? Grain, sugar, oxidizable unstable fat, processed junk, sugar, salt, junk, sugar, oxidizable vegetable fat, junk

Product B – Sugar, peanuts, glucose syrup, skimmed milk powder, cocoa butter, cocoa mass, sunflower oil, lactose, milk fat, vegetable fat, whey powder, salt, emulsifier, salt. And that really means? Sugar, junk, sugar, processed junk, processed junk, processed junk, oxidizable unstable fat, sugar, processed junk, oxidizable unstable fat, processed junk, salt, junk, salt.

If you compare these two lists to the lists mentioned above (that of health drinks), you’ll see that there is very little difference. Both contain grains, sugars and other junk and literally nothing else! In fact, there is absolutely nothing in both that is even marginally close to being good for you and/or your kids.

So what is product A? And what is product B? Any guesses? Why don’t you take a minute to think about this.

OK I don’t trust you. Just so you don’t cheat and actually spend a few seconds to think about it, I’ll cover up the answers by putting up a list of food manufacturing companies that actually truly care about your and your kid’s health.

OK. Now to the answers.

Product A is the never healthy…

Product B is the sinful…

Well well! How about that? Oreos and snickers are junk and unhealthy, but Bournvita and Boost are nutritious? Kinda stupid won’t you agree?

What about the micro-nutrients?

You’re such an idiot Raj! It’s all about the vitamins and minerals that these health foods are loaded with! Looks like you’re the one who doesn’t get it!

You know what? You’re right! Let me try and fix it now.

So, how about this then…

 +  = 

Give your little one a candy bar each morning before he/she runs off to school and just before bed along with a couple of multi-vitamins and you’re set! The kid won’t refuse it for sure and will smile and love you for eternity… and of course, will grow up to be a complan snickers boy or girl!

What say?

The verdict

Listen. I understand you mean well and that you want to provide your kids with the most nutritious foods. I also understand that the marketing done by these multi-million dollar food companies is absolutely awesome and hence very convincing. But, you need to understand a few things…

  • No food company gives a rats ass about your or your family’s health. They are all in it to make a buck and will do anything to make another.
  • Irrespective of how convincing a product is, it is your duty as a parent (and as a person who has common sense) to look into the list of ingredients and make smart choices.
  • There is no product that is as nutritionally dense as real food. If your kids won’t eat real food, train them to eat real food. If you can keep them away from cocaine, you can keep them away from junk.
Take a minute and share the knowledge ‘cos irrespective of how much we all care about our health and nutrition, the Nestles and the Coca Colas and the Cadburys are still emptying wallets and filling tummys (with junk).

Cut through the marketing crap and think behind the box!

Peace out.

‘Research says…’

How many articles have you seen on the newspaper and credible websites likes CNN.com that have a million studies referenced? How many authors fill their articles with ‘Research says…’ and link to PubMed? Sure makes the article seems legit, right? But tell me this – How many of those studies have you even read?

Here is the deal. You can write an article about anything under the sun and have studies backing up the claims! Why? Because such is the state of science today. Strongly influenced by politics and money! In this post, I’ll discuss some common mistakes with respect to understanding published literature and explain how you can save yourself from being fooled into believing that all ‘science’ is legit.

Don’t get me wrong. I am not saying that all studies are BS. I’m only saying that you need know how to differentiate between the good and bad studies and more importantly, you need to be able to gauge the relevance of the results to you, your body, your goals and your lifestyle. This is very important because, even for the most health conscious and well-meaning reader, studies and their conclusions can be very misleading if the he/she doesn’t posses a certain level of knowledge/understanding of the subject.

Case 1 – Insufficient understanding

Studies look at multiple (health) markers but researchers very often, in an effort to write attractive and tangible conclusions, decouple the results to a point of oversimplification that it becomes absolutely useless. You probably see many studies that say consumption of whole grains produce drastic improvements in health markers. But what you don’t understand is that when the volunteers were made to eat whole grains, they were also made to dump junk food and sugars, they were (in one way or the other) put in a calorie deficit and they were (in some way) made more active than they previously were! Basically, the control (i.e. the volunteer’s existing diet) is so unbelievably inferior that pretty much any half-decent diet will cause major health improvements. In addition to that, the calorie restriction results in weight loss which also improves health markers. The real deal is in the details and the 3 line conclusions or headlines you read don’t have them!

For example, distance running, you might have heard, is extremely beneficial for heart health. But this is all you hear and read (mostly because this is all you want to hear and read!). If you did take the time to dig deeper into the science behind this statement, it is not really the act of distance running that provides the benefit, but the elevated heart rate due to (any) activity that is responsible for the said benefit. But what is not taken into account is that distance running, in addition to elevating your heart rate, does other things like burning lean muscle and forcing overuse of certain joints. But then you, the running enthusiast, only register the headlines…

‘Research proves running reduces cardiovascular diseases by 40%’

… and jump into your shoes all pumped up for a long run. You invest a lot of time and effort on this because you are under the assumption that you are ‘leading a healthy lifestyle’. But eventually what happens is, due to the negatives associated with chronic distance running, you end up weak and skinny fat with achy joints. But by this time you have developed an emotional bond with running and you view running as the be-all-end-all of fitness that you are practically unable to look at your issues objectively! How many times have you complained of joint/ligament/muscle pain? And how many times have you said/thought… ‘Well, if you’re a runner, you will get injured! Its all part of the game!’. Once again… the real deal is in the details and headlines don’t have them!

Just to prove that I’m not randomly hating on distance running, let’s look at another example. I’m sure you’ve heard that coconut oil is magic and that it increases HDL, decreases LDL, increases metabolism, cures eczema and heals the gut. Let’s say you read the abstract and the conclusion says…

‘Test subjects who consumed 2 tablespoons of coconut oil every morning in an empty stomach lost more weight and had better blood lipids (HDL, LDL and Triglycerides) than the control group.’

Well, you think there is truth to this since you have read the study (only abstract of course) and this is perfect for you right now ‘cos your goal is weight loss and you don’t seem to have time to workout. So you drive to the nearest health store and buy yourself a can of extra virgin cold pressed coconut oil and start consuming 2 tablespoons every morning. A couple of months go by and you realize you’ve actually gained 3-5 lbs. WTF! How did that happen? You took the suggested dose per the advice in the paper! How? Holly hell! How? Well, like 99.99% of people, you didn’t read the paper and so you have no idea what else these test subjects did. You added 2 tablespoons of coconut oil (~ 250 cals) to your existing calorie intake but didn’t really remove anything else. What you didn’t do but the volunteers probably did was to manipulate energy intake (via exercise or food restriction) to ensure they were in a calorie deficit. The paper would have discussed their bodyweights, RMR, BMR, activity, maintenance calorie requirements and actual calorie intakes, but you didn’t read the paper! And once again… the real deal is in the details and conclusions don’t have them!

Case 2 – Neglecting the N=1 factor

Sure studies tell us whats good and whats bad in general and they can be useful in understanding a phenomenon or a concept. But that is really where it stops. The exact outcome of the study has nothing to do with you. A diet that produces 4 lb/week of fat loss on test subjects does not mean you will see the same amount of fat loss every week. There are differences between you and the people enrolled in the study – from lifestyle to body temperature to leptin sensitivity to receptor function to fat mobilization to mitochondrial activity!

And this is precisely why I find it funny when people cite a study and use that as a reason for doing or not doing something. I don’t care if there are 200 studies that say oatmeal is awesome. It absolutely messes with my gut and that is enough reason for me to stay the heck away from it! I don’t care if there are zero studies that prove elimination of grains improves sleep quality. I have solid n=1 evidence that I sleep better when my diet is grain free and that is worth a million studies! And I don’t care what you say ‘cos what I eat now is a result of extensive self-experimentation with respect to food quality, food quantity, meal timing, meal frequency etc. and you shouldn’t care about what I say if you have n=1 evidence that something works or doesn’t work for you! But, as obvious as it sounds, be very objective and true when experimenting with yourself. If a food or exercise doesn’t sit well, it doesn’t matter how much you love it, its got to go!

Case 3 – Assuming all studies are legit

Well, they’re not. They never were and they never will be.

Realize that it isn’t cheap to perform a study and every study that is done needs to be funded. Scraping just the surface – a team of surgeons/physicians/scientists/researchers/professors need to be hired, volunteers needs to be compensated, arrangements for the study (labs, rooms, food, testing facilities etc.) need to be made, animals need to be bred/bought/mobilized, benchmarks need to be set, tests need to be performed at various time intervals, analysis needs to be done, papers need to be written and publications need to be approved! And who do you think will fund all this? If you said the government, you get a $100 fine, you miss a turn and you don’t get to pass through Go! The correct answer is – people who have vested interest in the study. In other words, bigass food, medical and pharma companies!

Companies like Quaker will sponsor studies that prove oatmeal is good for health and companies like Monsanto will fund studies that say soy is a super food and Pharma companies will (abundantly) fund studies that prove statins save lives. So, now, it might not surprise you to know that most studies…

  • are initiated with the end result already decided.
  • are rigged by tweaking the study design in a way that the results, though unfavorable to the funding company, appear to be favorable.
  • have false conclusions that have absolutely nothing in common with the results obtained.
  • are short term studies which have no relevance towards long term health or are done on animals and have no carryover to human health.

So very clearly, one cannot make rigid dietary recommendations or choices purely based on scientific evidence. Then how does one know if a particular food/activity is good or bad?

In summary

1. Read the entire study in detail before you make changes or don’t make any changes.

2. If you don’t have the patience or time or capability or capacity to read and understand studies, talk to someone who does.

3. If you are convinced that the results of a study might benefit you, make the change only as long as it wont affect you adversely.

4. If you have made the change, listen to your body! And be objective about it. Always remember that studies don’t mean anything unless the change benefits YOU and if it doesn’t benefit you, throw it out.

And since people seem to understand pyramids better…

Read.

Understand.

Self-experiment.

Listen to your body.

Monitor and track progress.

Make decision to keep or dump change.

For more information on this topic be sure to read this post by J. Stanton on Gnolls.org and watch this video (Science For Smart People) by Tom Naughton.

Thats it for today folks! Have an awesome weekend and please share the post so your friends and family are in the know too!

Stay sane and safe ‘cos its a messed up world out there!

Peace out.

The Next Iron Chef

While some of you think I’m out of my mind when I say drop the stupid grains and base your foods around whole and real ingredients, some of you just ignore what I say because you’re thinking cooking/eating a meal without grains is impossible because

  1. It’s too expensive
  2. It’s time consuming
  3. No way it’s tasty!

Please let me explain why this is just another one of your dirty excuses.

I’m sure we’ve all eaten fancy, upscale restaurants. Obviously our local favorites serve awesome tasting food for much cheaper than their fancy counterparts. Unfortunately this makes us believe that cooking food like in these local restaurants (built around grains and cereals – meat and rice, burritos, naan and subzi, pizza, sandwiches/subs etc.) is much cheaper, faster and easier than what the fancier restaurants serve.

Well, let’s take a moment and think about some common characteristics of all fancy-ass restaurants. May be you ‘know’ this but I’m pretty sure you haven’t ‘realized’ it till now.

  • Menu: Most of the items are built around meat or a vegetable protein, dairy, vegetables, fruit and nuts.  Eg. Fillet Mignon with Roasted Vegetables, Poached Wild Alaskan Salmon with Sauteed Spinach & Toasted Pine Nuts, Marinated Grilled Tempeh with Brandied Peach Salad
  • Quality: Everything is prepared using fresh and raw ingredients. Dressings are made from scratch using lime, coconut milk/oil, lemon grass etc.
  • Fats: Butter, coconut oil, tallow, olive oil, avocado oil etc.
  • Cost: $$$$
  • Taste: Needless to say that the food tastes pretty frackin awesome.

Here is what you don’t know.

  • The time taken to cook these ‘upscale foods’ is much shorter than making junk food. Grilling/broiling/roasting your favorite protein and steaming/sauteing your pound of vegetables takes a lot less time to prep, cook and clean than cooking, say, rice and curry.
  • The cost of making these upscale foods is almost exactly the same as making your normal grain centric food. Coconut milk and clarified butter are super cheap and available in pretty much all indian/asian stores. Same case with lemon grass and lemon.
  • As far as taste is concerned… see below frackers!

I was watching this show called ‘The Next Iron Chef’ on Food Network a couple of days back (While I have no interest in talking about the show itself, I will ask ‘What the frac is the deal with The Chairman??). This particular episode had all the chef’s competing to become the next Iron Chef battle it out at a beach. The deal was as follows.

  • The chefs were asked what one ingredient they’d choose if stranded on a desert island. That would become the chef’s key ingredients for the day’s competition.
  • Each chef’s beach “kitchen” includes a grill and a prep table. And that’s not. No blenders or food processors or fancy torches or sorbet makers.
  • The chef’s had 60 mins to prepare a meal. Note: All ingredients were provided raw. Some chef’s had to cut open an entire pig white some other had to peel corn.
  • Ingenuity was the quality the judges were after.

So why am I even writing about this challenge?

  • The chef’s had to cook on a beach with only hand tools – Simulates ancestral cooking with hand-tools.
  • All ingredients were raw and fresh – Just the way the ingredients would have been available in ancestral times. No boxes. No freakin soybean oil. No processed crap.
  • No grains were available – Grains are ‘inedible’ in their raw state and cooking grains would require vessels and more than just fire which was not available… not to the chef’s, not to the early man.
  • Chef’s had to make their own oils/fats – Bottles of oil were not available… not to the chef’s, not to the early man.
  • Sauces/dressings/seasonings had to be made from scratch – Ranch and thousand island dressing were not a preferred food source… not for the chef’s, not for the early man.

The chef’s chose ingredients based on their expertise and 60 mins later there was an exhibition of some of the world’s most delicious and healthy dishes! So if your argument is that you can’t cook grain-free sugar-free healthy meals that taste great, then check these foods out and then continue to lobotomize yourself.

Chicken Under a Coconut With Caramelized Plantain Puree and a Watermelon Salad

Winning Dish: Chile and Garlic Marinated Pork Loin With Coconut Kidney Clam Stew, Mango-Avocado-Sea Bean Parfait and Lychee Sambal

Charred Ginger-Flavored Turkey Topped With Coconut Turkey Gizzards Sauce and Caramelized Plantains With Watermelon Basil Slaw

Corn and Coconut-Poached Santa Barbara Prawns With a Ragu of Sweet Corn, Habanero Chile, Hearts of Palm and Mint with A Grilled Corn, Dried Apricot and Mint Chutney Garnished With Fresh Sea Beans

You guys get what I’m saying here?? What I’ve been asking you to eat all along (the real food stuff) is the mouth watering exemplary stuff you pay for in upscale fancy ass snooty restaurants! You dig?

Next time you need a recipe for dinner, check out one of the fancy menus from the rich-people-restaurants.  Grain-free sugar-free recipes are everywhere folks. Search and you will find!

– Peace out.

Think Behind The Box – Fruit Juice

There are fools who down soda cans by the dozen and then there are idiots who gulp fruit juice by the gallon. This post is for the idiots.

So you sit down for breakfast with a friend and decide you want to eat your omelet and toast with grape juice (healthy option in most restaurants). I mean come on it’s grapes! No one got fat eating grapes! This has got to be good for you… worst case… this can’t be bad for you. Good food, great company and awesome juice on the side.  So you get a refill of the grape juice.

OK enough story telling. Here are the nutrition facts.

Serving Size 8 FL OZ
Calories – 170
Total Fat – 0g
Sodium – 20mg
Total Carb – 42g
Sugars – 40g
Protein – 0g
Vitamin C – 100%

(Note: All the sugar is from the fruit itself. This juice contains no added sugars.)

FYI… this is for 8 FL OZ which is 240 ml and I can guarantee you none of your juice glasses or restaurant juice glasses are 240 ml. They are AT LEAST 330 ml. Let’s do the math.

You just downed 660 ml of grape juice which has 460 calories with 110 grams of sugar. This is just from the BEVERAGE which is a PART of your FIRST MEAL of the day and you were wondering why I called you an idiot! If this isn’t enough praising for you… you will be elevated from the idiot level to the retard level if you stock your refrigerator with  juice cartons!

So what about orange juice? Loaded with ~ 25-30 grams of sugar per 240 ml. You’ll end up inhaling 80-90 grams of sugar in a couple of glasses.

Apple juice? Same shit.

Cranberry juice? Ditto.

Vitamin Water? Demands it’s own blog post but The Dark-side of Vitamin Water should give you some idea.

Diet Soda? Read this.

Sparkling water? Fruit infused water? Flavored water? Let me make this easy. If you have to look into the ingredients/nutrition facts section… then more often than not you’re drinking some form of crap.

Drink your water and eat your food! Liquid food is in general more readily available as glucose to your body and liquid sugar results in insanely crazy insulin spikes. The more frequent these crazy insulin spikes the fatter you get and the higher your risks of getting type II diabetes. Read about type II diabetes here and about carb loading & insulin spikes here.

Think about it for a second. Your two glasses of grape juice equals ~ 8 cups of fresh grapes. If you were to eat grapes as a side with breakfast would you ever eat 8 cups?? In one sitting? Or apples for example. The two glasses of apple juice actually contains ~ 4 apples. When was the last time you ate 4 apples as a side for breakfast??

Fruit in limited quantities is awesome… yes. But fruit juice is just a glass filled with diabetes. 100% natural diabetes of course.

Peace.

Think Behind The Box – Soft Drinks

‘All soft drinks are not created equal… some will kill you sooner and some later’

Let’s look  at a few examples to see why that line is true. Consider the ingredients in some of the famous sodas.

Coke:

Carbonated water, sucrose, caramel color, phosphoric acid, natural flavors, caffeine.

Sprite:

Carbonated water, high fructose corn syrup, citric acid, natural flavors, sodium citrate and sodium benzoate.

Pepsi:

Carbonated water, high fructose corn syrup, caramel color, sugar, phosphoric acid, caffeine, citric acid and natural flavors.

Funny shit right? There are people who’re like ‘Dude! Coke is wayyyyy better than pepsi!’ or vice versa… but the ingredients are all the same!! The diet/zero versions of these drinks just replace sugar with sweeteners and have more chemicals added!

Coke Zero:

Carbonated water, caramel color, phosphoric acid, natural flavors, caffeine, aspartame, potassium benzoate (to protect taste), potassium citrate, acesulfame potassium

Diet Coke:

Carbonated water, high fructose corn syrup, caramel color, phosphoric acid, natural flavors, caffeine, aspartame, potassium benzoate (to protect taste),citric acid.

Ingredient Analysis:

Carbonated water = Water + carbon dioxide. Wait… isn’t carbon dioxide what we exhale? Ouch! Read more here.

Sugar/Sucrose = Table sugar. Like we don’t get enough of this! Each can has ~ 40 gm of sugar!

High fructose corn syrup = Corn syrup + enzymatic processing + mercury poisoning! Nice! Read more here.

Caffeine = Stimulant

Caramel Color = Food coloring. All healthy food is brown right? Read more here.

“Natural flavors” = Nothing natural about it! Read more here.

So from the little analysis above…

Soft drinks = Sugar + Carbon dioxide + Stimulants + Chemicals + lab made “natural flavors”

and you down several cans of these everyday… perfect!

Negatives of soft drinks:

1. Each can of soft drink has 41 gm (~ 10 teaspoons) of sugar. Say you have jussssst one a day. Now that is

365 cans = 3,650 teaspoons of sugar = 15,000 gm of sugar = 15 kg of sugar!!!

and this is in addition to all the other sugar you get… from sweets, chocolates, cereals, coffee etc etc etc!

2. Diet coke/pepsi to the rescue! No sugar right? Right. But feeding your body a truck load of artificial sweeteners & chemicals ain’t any better for you. A whole blog post needs to be written on artificial sweeteners to explain the dangers that arise.

3. The Phosphoric acid neutralizes the hydrochloric acid in the stomach. This lead to digestive difficulties and interference with nutrient absorption. Read article here.

4. People who consume soft drinks are more prone to tooth decay. Read publication here.

5. Soft drinks are associated with higher risk of obesity and decreasing level of blood calcium and increasing urinary calcium excretion, which may lead to osteoporosis later in life. Read publication here.

6. There is good evidence that cola beverages can increase the risk of kidney problems. Read publication here.

7. Fructose ingestion elicits an increase in blood pressure. Read publication here.

I’ll admit… I was one soft drink guzzler too (well… who wasn’t!). I inhaled a liter or more of these everyday. But dumping soft drinks was one of the best things I ever did. Do it and you will not regret it. Trust me on this one!

Solution:

Water for thirst. Some coffee for caffeine.

Peace.

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