Artificially Sweetened (Diet) Drinks Are More Hazardous to Your Health Than Sugary Drinks – Footnote No. 3 in Gary S. Smolker’s Mentor’s Journal

Sunday, April 13, 2014
I completely agree with you that it is a bad idea to drink diet drinks and that it is a good idea to drink water instead.
Here is what Mark Hyman, MD says about “diet drinks” in “The Blood Sugar Solution”:

  • Those who consume diet drinks regularly have a 200 percent increased risk of weight gain, a 36 percent increase risk of pre-diabetes or metabolic syndrome, and a 67 percent increased risk of diabetes.  A study of over 400 people found that those who drank two diet sodas a day had five times the increase in waist circumference as those who did not drink soda.
  • In another alarming study, rats offered the choice of cocaine or artificial sweeteners always picked the artificial sweetener, even if the rats were previously programmed to be cocaine addicts.  The author of the study said that, “[t]he absolute preference for taste sweetness may lead to a re-ordering in the hierarchy of potentially addictive stimuli, with sweetened diets…taking precedence over cocaine and possibly other drugs of abuse.”
  • The use of artificial sweeteners, as well as “food porn,” the sexy experience of sweet, fat, and salt in your mouth, alters your food preferences.  Your palate shifts from being able to enjoy fruits and vegetables and whole foods to liking only the sexy stuff.
In “The Blood Sugar Solution 10-Day Detox Diet”, Dr. Hyman says:

  • Coke proudly promotes the fact that it has 180 low – or no-calorie drinks and that it has cut sales of sugared drinks in schools by 90 percent.  Is that a good thing? I don’t think so.  In fact, it may be worse to drink diet soda than regular soda.
  • A fourteen-year study of 66,118 woman published in the AMERICAN JOURNAL OF CLINICAL NUTRITION (and supported by many previous and subsequent studies) discovered:
  1. Diet sodas raised the risk of diabetes more than sugar-sweetened sodas.
  2. Women who drank one twelve-ounce diet soda a week had a 33 percent increased risk of type 2 diabetes, and women who drank one twenty-ounce soda a week had a 66 percent increased risk.
  3. Women who drank diet sodas drank twice as much as those who drank sugar-sweetened sodas because artificial sweeteners are more addictive than regular sugar.
  4. The average diet soda drinker consumes three diet drinks a day.
In “The Blood Sugar Solution 10-Day Detox Diet” Dr. Hyman also states:
  • Artificial sweeteners are hundreds to thousands of times sweeter than regular sugar, activating our genetically programmed preference for sweetness more than any other substance.
  • Artificial sweeteners trick your metabolism into thinking sugar is on its way.  This causes your body to pump out insulin, the fat-storage hormone, which leads to more belly fat.
  • Artificial sweeteners confuse and slow down your metabolism, so you burn fewer calories every day.  They make you hungrier and cause you to crave more sugar and starchy carbs, such as bread and pasta.
  • In animal studies, the rats that consumed artificial sweeteners ate more food, their metabolic fire or thermogenesis slowed down, and they put on 14 percent more body fat in just two weeks – even if they ate fewer total calories that the rats that ate regular sugar-sweetened food.
  • Diet drinks are not good substitutes for sugar-sweetened drinks.  They increase cravings, weight gain, and type 2 diabetes, and they are addictive.

By the way, in “The Blood Sugar Solution”, Dr. Hyman reports/opines that

  • Drinking water before meals increases weight loss by about 44 percent.
  • Almost three out of four Americans are obese as a result of eating the wrong foods.
  • The fatter Americans become, the more they develop heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and a myriad of other chronic ailments.
  • Obesity takes nine years off the life of the average person.
  • The sicker our population, the more medications are sold by Big Pharma for high cholesterol, diabetes, high blood pressure, depression, and many other life-style-driven diseases. 
  • One of the leading products of the American food industry has become patients for the American health care industry.
  • The average child sees 10,000 ads for junk food on television a year.  The food industry spends $13 billion a year marketing their products to children.
  • On popular television shows such as American Idol.  In American Idol all the judges are drinking Coke, thanks to a multimillion dollar deal with the show.  The worse the food, the more companies spend on marketing.
  • A Yale study found that kids who watched food ads ate 50 percent more of the snacks placed in front of them.
  • The visual stimuli trigger the brain to eat more.  Snacking (an American invention) is seen as fun, exciting, and ultimately the source of happiness.
  • The Center for Science in the Public Interest brought a lawsuit against Coca-Cola for deceptive marketing practices of its “Vitamin Water” product.  Coke hired celebrities like Kobe Bryant and Lebron James to tout its healthful effects.  At 125 calories a bottle (drinking one bottle a day would make you gain about 10 pounds in a year), the minuscule amount of vitamins in the bottle is irrelevant compared to the sugar.
  • The lawsuit is based on the Jelly Bean Rule, which prohibits companies from selling junk foods with minimal health benefits by marketing them as healthy foods.
  • The lawyers for Coca-Cola are defending the lawsuit by asserting that “no consumer could reasonably be misled into thinking Vitamin Water is a healthy beverage.”
  • Astounding.  They defend themselves by saying that no one could be stupid enough to believe their ads that this is actually a healthy drink.  Just ask some average teenager what they think.

According to Dr. Hyman, No one profits from lifestyle medicine, so it is not part of medical education or practice.  It should be the foundation of our health care system, but the way modern medicine operates doctors ignore it because they get paid to dispense medication and perform surgery.  As a result, we know more about how to keep our cars running for 200,000 plus miles than about how to keep our bodies, minds, and souls healthy for a lifespan of 120 years. 

Ancient cultural knowledge about how to create and maintain health is lost, schools don’t teach us, doctors and nutritionists don’t learn this in school, and policy makers rely on outdated or flawed science at best and industry influence at worse to guide us.

Dr. Hyman urges everyone to learn about how their body works and the basic ingredients for health. 

I believe there is nothing “honest” about calling an artificially sweetened drink a “diet drink”; and, that we need to learn about how our body works in order to protect ourselves from food industry advertisements of unhealthy foods.


For the editorial purpose of making your COMMENT (copy below) readable to a general audience, may I exclude from your comment the “abstract” of the article “Effects of diuretics on thyroid function of guinea pigs” from your comment?

Is that okay?
I am sending a copy of your “comment” and of my comments to several friends, for their comment.———-

By the way, two of my “pet peeves” are (a) people thinking they will lose weight if they drink “diet drinks”, and (b) the MISLEADING labeling of foods and beverages.

I highly value honesty, integrity and intelligence.

I don’t think there is anything “honest” about implying “diet drinks” good for you or taking advantage of people’s ignorance.
Thank you again for sending your comment (copy below) to be posted on The Gary Smolker Idea Exchange Blog,

Sincerely with warmest regards,
I remain very truly yours,
—–Original Message—–
From: WordPress <>
To: gsmolker <>
Sent: Sat, Apr 12, 2014 6:52 pm
Subject: [Gary S. Smolker] Please moderate: “Home”

About Gary S. Smolker

PERSONAL PHILOSOPHY: No enterprise can exist for itself alone. Every successful enterprise ministers to some great need, it performs some great service, not for itself, but for others. Otherwise, it ceases to be profitable and ceases to exist. Imagination, open mindedness and flexibility are the most important factors in unlocking potential. Those who embrace innovation, improvisation, continuous learning, time management, are action oriented, high energy, passionate, creative, purposeful and intense individuals are best equipped to succeed. We all have ideas and the ability to make progress by sharing information and our ideas and also by changing our ideas when appropriate. We should always be on the lookout for teaching and mentoring moments. We hold time like water in our hands; however tightly we clench our fingers, it drips away. But, if it falls on a seed, a seed may grow to become something that will have a positive social impact. PERSONAL INTERESTS: I have a passion to learn, to innovate, to lead, to mentor and to teach. I seek to write things worth reading and want to do things worth writing about. I enjoy (a) driving a fast car, (b) having intense conversations (c) teaching/mentoring, (d) reading and (e) being involved in productive activity. PERSONAL: I believe in cultivating and backing passionate people, innovation, and old fashioned good ideas. I love making human connections and spreading good ideas. I am strongly motivated to achieve in situations in which independence of thought and action are called for. PERSONAL GOALS: I want to live life vibrantly, to be as sharp as a tack until my last breath and to change the world by being me. My personal goal is to be fully engaged in life, to lead by example, to set high standards and to continue to amass firsthand experience and knowledge in all that interests me. PERSONALITY: I love fun and mischief. I relish absurdity. I have an irreverent, facetious and satiric disposition. I dread boredom. I have spent a lifetime reading. I have no bias against people who have lived successful and/or complicated lives. I write to release tension, to get things off my chest. SOCIAL MEDIA: I post articles on the "Gary S. Smolker Idea Exchange" blog at, and "Dude's Guide to Women's Shoes" at I also post images and comments on Instagram @garyspassion. CONTACT INFORMATION: Gary Smolker, Smolker Law Firm, 16055 Ventura Blvd., Ste 525, Encino, California, 91436-2609, USA. Phone 1-818-788-7290, e-mail

Posted on April 13, 2014, in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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