Is Drinking Soda Pop Harming Our Kids?

One of the newest crazes in America is drinking bottled water. You can find it everywhere and anywhere. It’s bottled under many different brand names, and it’s carried on store shelves across the United States. Instead of having a Coke with your Big MacâÂ?¢ or your Wendy’sÃ?® Single hamburger, you can now have a bottle of water instead. That’s good news, isn’t it? With the craze about drinking bottled water, you would think that we Americans are drinking more of it. But, that’s not often the case. Soda pop is still ranked as the number 1 drink among our youth. So then, the next question is, is drinking soda pop harming our youth?

Soda pop- no matter what brand or what flavor- is basically made up of flavored sugar water. There aren’t any nutrients in this popular beverage. Instead, besides the sugar, (or AspartameâÂ?¢ or NutrasweetâÂ?¢ in the diet versions), many kinds of soda pop contain ingredients such as carbonated water, caffeine, and phosphoric acid.

Note: Are you curious about Aspartame? Find out more about it here:

Sugar is known to cause a variety of health problems in humans. A twelve-ounce can of soda pop contains an average of 39 grams of sugars. With the increasing problem of obesity in kids and the popularity of drinking soda pop, the two seem to go hand in hand. Studies show that twelve-year-old kids who drink soda pop are more prone to obesity than kids who don’t drink the fizzy beverage. Sugar supplies empty calories. It also promotes tooth decay. You probably already know these facts.

What you may not know, is that drinking soda pop is harmful to our kids because sugar lowers the immunity system. For five or more hours after taking in sugar, the white blood cells have a lower ability to kill bacteria.

Carbonated water, of course, is the key ingredient in soda pop. It’s the ingredient that gives pop it’s fizz. You wouldn’t think that drinking fizzy water could harm our kids. However, research shows that when you drink a twelve-ounce can of soda pop, the oxygen level in your body is reduced by 25% for up to three hours. This means that drinking carbonated water actually robs our bodies of vital oxygen. That’s bad enough for adults. But for growing kids who need plenty of oxygen, it’s even more harmful yet.

Now let’s look at caffeine. Caffeine is a known stimulant. It raises a person’s blood pressure, pulse rate, and the amount of acids in the stomach. It is also addictive. And, instead of replenishing the body, it causes dehydration. Drinking too much caffeine- as in soda pop- causes nervousness, restlessness, the inability to concentrate, and even insomnia. Do our kids need to feel like this? How can they perform their best in school when they are hyped up on caffeinated soda pop?

In order to maintain health bones, the human body needs a combination of calcium, magnesium and phosphorus. If there’s too much phosphorus, calcium is taken from the bones. The result? Bone-weakening Osteoporosis. What does this have to do with drinking soda pop harming our kids? Many soda pops contain Phosphoric Acid. Not to mention the fact, that, since our kids are drinking soda pop instead of milk, they’re not getting the beneficial calcium from the milk.

So, in answer to the question, “Is drinking soda pop harming our kids?” Studies show that drinking an occasional soda pop isn’t going to significantly harm anyone, even kids. Soda pop doesn’t contain any beneficial nutrients, so it can’t be described as being “good for you.” However, as long as it’s drunk in moderation, it won’t kill you.

The real problem that’s harming our kids isn’t the soda pop, it’s the amount of this beverage that the kids of America are guzzling down every day. We can help eliminate this problem by taking some simple steps:

1. Be a healthy role model. Your kids are going to want to drink what they see you drinking. When you’re thirsty, choose water or fruit juices instead of non-nutritional soda pop.

2. Drink soda pop in moderation. Don’t keep cases of this beverage on hand at all times. Instead, buy bottled water and juice drinks.

3. Encourage your kids to drink plenty of water for their health. Also, make sure they drink plenty of milk and other healthy drinks instead of harming their bodies by drinking too much soda pop.

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