On a hot, summer day the first thing that likely comes to mind is a tall, cold beverage in your hand. Unfortunately, a majority of the most popular summer beverages come at a cost to your health. Chances are some of your favorite summer beverages are packed with an exorbitant amount of sugar. While the beverage may go down easily and help keep you cool in the hot summer sun, enjoying your favorite summer beverage may mean sipping on hundreds of grams of excessive sugar. Now, imagine drinking more than one of these beverages per day. There are plenty of summer beverages you should be avoiding to save your waistline and your overall health.
Sugary Summer Beverages You Should Be Avoiding:
1. Soda. Whether you are opting for regular or diet soda, you should just say no to soda this summer. Sodas contain way too much sugar or even worse — artificial sweeteners. Some experts go as far as to say that drinking soda in many ways as just as bad as smoking cigarettes. For example, diet sodas typically contain a chemical known as aspartame. This sugar substitute has more than 92 different side effects including birth defects, brain tumors, diabetes, seizures and emotional disorders.
Sipping on an iced-cold soda also exposes you to:
Phosphoric Acid. Phosphoric acid can interfere with your body’s ability to use calcium. This can lead to osteoporosis.Benzene. Researchers have found benzene levels as high as 79 ppb in some sodas. Benzene is a known carcinogen.
Artificial Food Colors.
Artificial food colorings, including the caramel coloring that is found in most sodas, is a known carcinogen. The artificial caramel coloring is created by reacting corn sugar with sulfites and ammonia under high pressures at high temperatures.
Sodium Benzoate. Sodium benzoate is a common preservative found in a majority of soft drinks. This preservative can lead to DNA damage, which can eventually lead to Parkinson’s disease or cirrhosis of the liver.
2. Wine Coolers. Wine coolers are sugary summer beverages you should be avoiding this summer. Wine coolers are a very popular summer beverage; especially for those who do not particularly enjoy the taste of alcohol. These drinks are designed to taste more like a fruit juice than alcohol. This makes these beverages a very popular drink while relaxing on a hot summer day. However, this sweet taste does come at a cost to your health.
In order to make these beverages taste extremely sweet, manufacturers typically add fruit juice and sugar to these drinks to wine. The wine used to make these drinks are typically the cheapest grade available. In fact, some wine coolers are not even made from wine, but a malt instead. Wine coolers are packed full of artificial food colorings, artificial flavorings and artificial sweeteners. Of course, these drinks contain alcohol — which have addictive properties and overtime can be very damaging to your health.
3. Beer. Beer is another one of those beverages that you should be avoiding this summer. Beer contains a large amount alcohol and empty calories. The yeast in beer also creates uric acid. Uric acid is a normal waste product that is found in your blood. Higher levels of uric acid are associated with gout.
Beer is also known to create the classic “beer belly syndrome.” This syndrome is very similar to metabolic syndrome. This includes abdominal obesity, high blood pressure, hypertriglyceridemia and insulin resistance. As a result, limiting your beer consumption is a great way of controlling your weight and improving your health.
4. Lemonades and Fruit Juices. For many lemonade and fruit juices are a summer staple. However, these drinks are packed full of sugar and fall under the category of summer beverages that you should be avoiding this summer. Lemonade and fruit juice contain plenty of sugar and high fructose corn syrup. In terms of the effects on your health, these drinks are very similar to sodas. Too much lemonade and fruit juice can increase your risk of weight gain as well as chronic degenerative diseases.
If you are craving lemonade, try making fresh lemonade. This will be lowest in fructose. If you need to add a sweetener, stick with stevia and avoid sugar as well as artificial sweeteners.
5. Sweetened Iced Teas. Sweet teas are another summer staple. However, sweet teas are a summer beverage that you should be avoiding. It is a common misconception that sweetened iced teas are healthy for you just because they contain tea. Yes, tea can be a great source of antioxidants. However, sweet teas contain excessive sugars that are not great for your health. One glass of sweet tea can contain up to 22 percent sugar. With sugar levels this high, drinking sweetened iced teas can actually contain twice the amount of sugar as one can of soda.