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Drinking Diet Soda May Actually Cause More Belly Fat In The Long Run

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If you thought drinking three cans of diet soda was healthy because it doesn't have any calories, think again.

New research shows that diet sodas may actually have the opposite effect you're hoping for when you forego the sugar-filled alternatives.

The Huffington Post reports that drinking diet beverages may actually cause more weight gain in the waist than drinking normal soda.

That's because of an ingredient added to the fizzy drinks called phosphoric acid.

The acid is actually added to both regular and calorie-free sodas, but research shows people who opt for diet beverages tend to drink much more than those who choose the calories.

In the study, published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, researchers examined 749 adults, all aged 65 and older, for nearly 10 years.

They found the participants who opted for diet soda saw their bellies grow by 2.11 centimeters over the 9.4-year period, and while the regular soda drinkers' waists grew .77 centimeters, researchers couldn't directly link waist growth to drinking non-diet soda.

That isn't to say other studies haven't found that regular soda drinkers experience weight gain over time.

The most important part of this study is the fact that phosphoric acid is linked to this growth in the waist.

The ingredient is also linked to a whole bunch of other terrible issues in the human body, such as high blood pressure, diabetes, coronary heart disease, depression, cognitive decline and death from cancer and cardiovascular disease, the Huffington Post says.

At the end of the day, the most important thing is to moderate your soda drinking at an early age.

Don't fall into unhealthy habits where you're drinking or eating anything too sugary, carbonated or just plain unhealthy for you.

Citations: How Diet Soda May Lead To More Belly Fat In Older Adults (Huffington Post)