A can a day makes doctors pray


Photo courtesy of Rachyl Rickles

Mackenzie Bernas, Staff Writer

By Mackenzie Bernas

Three-to-four cans of soda a day is what sophomore Rachyl Rickles can call normal. 

“After I get home from school I drink one, and whenever that one’s empty, I drink another,” said Rickles “[and] during dinner time, I’ll get two more.”

Rickles doesn’t consider soda to be a healthy choice “particularly the dark soda because that’s what I’ve been told my whole life,” but her conclusion when it comes down to it is “I don’t like how water tastes.”

Rickles is one of the many PA students who enjoy several sodas a day. Even President Trump reportedly drinks 12 Diet Cokes a day.

Although soda is a tempting beverage, data shows that people who drink soda on a daily basis won’t like their chances at remaining one of the living as long as those who do not indulge. Drinking 1-2 cans of that sugary sweetness can lead to a sugary sweet death because the average drinker’s overall chance of an early death rises by 14 percent. Not only does this tasty deathtrap go hand-in-hand with diabetes, weight gain, heart disease, and stroke, but also primarily the cardiovascular problems often do not let soda-drinkers live until they’re old and gray. 

Like a drug, soda also won’t let people stop drinking it due to its habit-forming properties. Rickles also believes soda to be addictive and tried to stop drinking it for a while. “Someone dared me to go vegetarian for three months and during that time, I decided that I also wanted to start eating a bit healthier so for three months I didn’t drink soda,” said Rickles, and so she “stopped and then I got back on it.” Soda also doesn’t make the ones drinking it think about its nasty after bite in the health department according to Rickles. When it comes to thinking about the consequences Rickles mentioned, “Whenever I’m drinking it, definitely not.”

On the basis of negative consequences, Rickles has also noticed soda’s impact on her health. “I usually get migraines, really bad migraines, but I [found] out that if I drink more soda it will stop the migraine for a while, and then it will come back,” said Rickles.

Honorable mentions of some other negative effects include higher risk for cancer and dementia, getting on the path to fatty liver disease, risking gout, and tooth decay.

Soda is hard to stop drinking, but there are healthy alternatives out there. First and foremost, water is the best healthy alternative, but if there’s a search for taste then there are others: water infused with fruit, iced tea, iced coffee, sparkling water, and coconut water are among the many choices. 

Rickles isn’t near a stopping point with her soda intake and is “pretty sure caffeine is addictive so I’ll probably be drinking that for the rest of my life unless I stop somehow so I’ll probably have migraines for the rest of my life.”