When Zero Calories = Disease

waterWhen Zero Calories = Disease

As the weather warms up across the nation, our thirst tends to increase, and therefore so must our fluid intake. And with summer swim suits begging to be donned, most of us are looking for a way to satisfy our thirst without adding girth to our midsections. Enter diet beverages.

Diet soda, diet iced tea and lemonade, flavored powders packaged in mini-sleeves, perfectly portioned to pour into our water bottles…all seem to fit the bill. They have plenty of “yum”, and no calories to concern ourselves with.

Yet there is something you and I need, very well, to be concerned with—the significant health risk that has been recently found to be associated with the daily consumption of diet beverages.

A study published this April (2017) in the American Heart Association’s journal, Stroke, shone a very unhealthy light on those who drank just one, daily serving of an artificially sweetened beverage. When compared with those who did not drink diet beverages, those who did were THREE TIMES MORE LIKELY TO SUFFER A STROKE and THREE TIMES MORE LIKELY TO SUFFER FROM ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE. Yikes—that statistic scares me more than sporting a couple extra pounds across my belly!

So here is what I suggest: Steer clear of ALL diet drinks. Instead, satisfy your need for flavor, along with your desire not to drink your calories, by quenching your thirst with zero calorie, naturally flavored water concoctions. Spice up a jug of fresh water with one of these flavorful additions and keep them on rotation in your refrigerator so that your taste buds can experience a pleasant variety.

Cucumber water-cleaned, peeled or unpeeled, sliced.

Citrus water (lime, lemon, or orange)-cleaned, sliced in circles through the midsection.

Strawberry water-cleaned and quartered or sliced.

Mint water-crush fresh mint leaves by rolling them in your hands before adding them to the water.

Pour fresh water over one or more of these flavorful additives and leave it to “seep” overnight. (I suggest that you use a clear glass pitcher to make it even more enticing.) When you’ve sampled each of the suggestions above, experiment further by mixing and matching flavors to your liking—cucumber and mint is one of my favorite combinations!

Zero calories = zero side effects…now that’s a math equation I can have an affinity towards!

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