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What are some healthier substitutions for diet soda?

Dr. Darria Long Gillespie, MD
Emergency Medicine
I have to admit, I’m a big fan of diet soda -- it’s a tough habit to break! The problem with diet soda is that, while they may have zero calories themselves, the artificial sweeteners in them could make you crave more foods, especially sweet ones. That’s one of the reasons why diet sodas may actually be associated with weight gain.
 
One obvious alternative is water. You can make it more fun by adding fruit. Whatever is in season, just throw it into the jug, chill and drink. I also love a good naturally flavored seltzer when I want something fizzy.
 
If you’re sleepy and you drink soda as a pick-me-up, a better choice is to replace it with coffee or tea, even an iced coffee or tea if you prefer a cold drink.
 
No matter what, I’m not an advocate of deprivation.  If you’re having one diet soda a day, I’m not going to tell you that you MUST eliminate it entirely.  Just don’t rely on it, and don’t let yourself use it as an excuse to eat more later! 
Dr. Michael Roizen, MD
Internal Medicine
Some healthier substitutions for diet soda include flavored carbonated water, green tea, black coffee and even dark chocolate. In this video, internal medicine specialist Michael Roizen, MD, shares his favorite healthy alternatives for diet soda.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.