• Coca Cola and Pepsi fund a study claiming health benefits of diet soda. (Getty Images North America)Source: Getty Images North America
Is diet soda as good as water? According to Coke and Pepsi it is!
By
Caitlin Chang

21 Jan 2016 - 10:45 AM  UPDATED 21 Jan 2016 - 12:07 PM

'Big Soda' have backed the most unbelievable study ever, funding research claiming that diet soft drink is just as good as water for weight loss.

According to reports in the Independent, the study published in the International Journal of Obesity in November was partially funded by ILSI Europe, which is an industry-backed research body that included Coca-Cola and Pepsi Co as some of its members. The reports also claim that the group paid some researchers directly.

Other members of the research team are 'employees and shareholders of companies that manufacture products containing sugars and low-energy sweeteners.'

What’s more, Consumerist states the lead study author had once received research funding from Sugar Nutrition, UK, an industry lobby group once known as the British Sugar Bureau. Other members of the research team are “employees and shareholders of companies that manufacture products containing sugars and low-energy sweeteners.”

The study claims “overall, the balance of evidence indicates that use of low-energy sweeteners in place of sugar, in children and adults, leads to reduced energy intake and body weight, and possibly also when compared with water.” The Independent states that the study was based on three out of 5,500 related papers. It’s also worth noting that the only study that actually states diet soda is better than water when it comes to weight loss was funded by the American Beverage Association, a powerful lobby group who has been fighting against soda taxes in the US.

The only study that actually states diet soda is better than water when it comes to weight loss was funded by the American Beverage Association.

In contrast to this soda-funded study, previous research has highlighted the dangers of diet soft drink. One study has found that artificial sweetener aspartame, a common ingredient in diet soda, may alter the brain’s reward system leading to headaches, insomnia and anxiety.

Diet soda has also been linked to increased risk of metabolic syndrome (leading to heart disease and diabetes) and increased abdominal fat. One nine-year study even found that a daily diet soda increases your chance of becoming obese in the next decade by 65 per cent.

Nice try guys, we’ll be sticking to H20.  

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