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I grew up in a painfully middle-class family. Both of my parents were school teachers. Getting a good education and going off to college meant everything to them. So I obliged. Sometimes I think education is the worst thing that ever happened to me. But I digress.
I went to a much better school than I could have ever afforded. Generally, kids who come from middle income families go to state universities. In my case, that would have meant LSU. But I had a talent that colleges love. I had the ability to find and catch the guy with the football in his hand and annihilate him. Therefore, I got a scholarship to Tulane University.
Once I graduated from Tulane with a degree in education, I found myself smack dab in the middle of downtown New Orleans, the home of some very wealthy, blue-blood oil money types. It was back in the day before every soccer mommy who dropped their kids off at preschool and needed something to do during the day set out to be a personal trainer. Back then, trainers were few and far between. I guess you can say I was in the first group of fitness trainers.
I learned a lot from these folks. They taught me about the finer things in life. I went to operas, symphonies, art exhibits, fine restaurants and even traveled with them.
I learned something else from them. When you have money and leisure time, you don’t like to wait for anything. You want things to happen instantly. That’s where I first came up with the term Diet Coke Diet.
I’m not talking about the stuff sold by Coca-Cola. I’m talking about the white powder that shows up in a little baggy. Some of these socialites who wore a size 2 wanted to wear a size 1. If they wore a 1, they wanted to wear a 0. Hell, why work for it when you can just shove a little coke up your nose.They would do this all day, until they needed to sleep. Then they had a drug for that. So it was a vicious cycle.
I hate to sound like Grace Slick from Jefferson Airplane but c’mon!
I told you that to tell you this. There’s another coke out there. A coke that probably does more harm, and it’s not a white powder, it’s a dark liquid. I’m talking about Diet Coke and Coke Zero. By the way, I don’t know the difference between the two.
Here’s what I do know. When my clients ask if they have to stop drinking diet soft drinks, I say yes. They think this is not fair. What do you mean not fair? What about before Coke was invented? You think the people in the 1800s said it was unfair it wasn’t invented yet? The point is, you don’t need it to live.
The bigger point is not how bad this product is. It’s the fact that some people think if you drink it in diet form it’s alright for you. So they drink more of it.
I had a theory about diet soft drinks back in the 1980s. Artificial sweeteners can be thrown into the same group. In your liver, it will react to it the same way it reacts to sugar. It can and will cause a glycogen spike. In the 1980s I had no way of substantiating this because I’m not biochemist.
In recent years, I’ve read many articles that agree with my old theory. Not only are diet soft drinks bad for you, these products can aid in keeping you fat. If you need suggestions on beverages to drink, try black coffee. If you have a hypertension or high blood pressure problem, you may want to stay away from it. But in that case, you’d want to stay away from Diet Coke also. Try fresh brewed tea. Before you ask me if black, green or white are OK, I’ll tell you now that they’re all fine. And then there’s my favorite: water.
I make this point with my clients all the time. Everybody wants to know the one thing they can eat or drink with total impunity. It doesn’t exist. Enjoy life.