This week there was a call from the Academy Of Medical Royal Colleges to ban fizzy drinks to help prevent obesity. Is it just me or does this smack of desperation? I am reminded of the pointlessness of putting an Elastoplast on a horrific injury. It’s not that fizzy drinks don’t contribute to weight gain, any diet that’s high in sugar puts us in a fat storing state, so they should definitely be avoided. But I worry when one aspect or one specific food or drink is highlighted as the cause, and the inference is that if we stop consuming that one thing weight loss will occur naturally.

As a successful weight loss coach this is a bit of a paradox; if someone drinks a litre or more of sugary drink a day then of course changing this one behaviour will result in weight loss, not to mention they will feel better, BUT and its a big BUT, that is assuming they replace the fizzy sweet drinks with a healthy alternative such as filtered or even better ionized water. The problem is that with this kind of sensational headline is that many people just switch to artificially sweetened or “sugar free” versions of the same drink. The most commonly used artificial sweetners are Sucralose know as Splenda® and Apspartame knows as Equal or NutraSweet®. To date there have been no long-range studies of the effects of sucralose, so they can rightly argue that it has not been proved to be harmful, but bear in mind the same thing happened with tobacco. As a result of not performing the required epidemiological research, it took years to acknowledge the effects of tobacco on health. Meanwhile the tobacco companies made billions. 

If we look at the process that these substances go through before they end  up not just in our fizzy drinks, but in many every day foods such as yoghurts, it’s more than a little scary. Sucralose is basically denatured sucrose. In other words they take a naturally occurring molecule, and chemically alter it: let me be technical for a brief moment to make the point – they first chlorinate the sucrose and then chemically change the structure of the sugar molecules by substituting three chlorine atoms for three hydroxyl groups. Chlorine is a known carcinogen. Scary enough for you?

In the US 80% of all complaints about food additives relate to NutraSweet®, yet the FDA has yet to move on any of them. In spite of this inaction by the FDA, there are strong indications that this “sweetener” is toxic. According to Dr.Betty Martini a fierce campaigner against artificial sweeteners, in a report from Flying Safety, an official United States Air Force publication, US Air Force pilots were warned not to consume Aspartame in any amounts at all. Why? “Aspartame has been investigated as a possible cause of brain tumors, mental retardation, birth defects, epilepsy, Parkinson’s Disease, Fibromyalgia, and Diabetes.”

If you want to find out more about natural alternatives to these toxic sweeteners check out natural sweeteners like agave nectar or raw honey.

So by saying ditch the fizzy – ditch the fat, are we really just exchanging one serious health problem for another? As with so many things, nature has the answer. H2o. Our body needs water, every chemical process that occurs in our body occurs in a  “wet” environment, so its hardly surprising that the quality of the water we put into our body impacts on our health. The beneficial effects of ionized water are striking. There’s so much in the news about consuming anti-oxidants, and yet the antioxidants in ionized water are the best of all, and yet they barely get a mention. An antioxidant works by “donating” an electron which effectively captures the harmful free radical so it can do no more harm. But the molecule that donated its electron is then incomplete, for example Vitamin C, so it can  do no further good in the body and actually has to be eliminated itself. The process of ionization however, generates free electrons, that are then free to neutralize any free radical anywhere in your body. For more information on Kangen water filters, in my opinion the “gold standard” in this field, speak to Pete Chapman who will happily send you lots of compelling and inspirational information and demos. Its not a hard sell (I am not into that), there’s no obligation to buy this or any other water filter, but if you want better health then be curious and  check it out. Its also worth noting that many people respond to a natural thirst signal as “hungry” and of course when food doesn’t satisfy this signal the body re-sends it, and so the cycle goes on – along with the weight!

When it comes to weight loss, the easiest approach is to make weight loss the secondary goal, and make health the first. Weight loss is a side effect of having a healthy body. What you put in your body directly determines how well it functions, how it looks, and how long it lasts. So what do you choose, fizzy? fat? or …………… health!

If you want more information on how what you eat affects how you store fat, and how by using my unique colour code system you can keep your body alkaline and promote natural weight loss, then you can get my book Think More Eat Less and downloadable nutrition course here combined with some amazing techniques to change how you think and feel about food, or if you would like more information on my upcoming 1 day workshops to learn these techniques in person then click here