Drinking Soda Soft Drinks When Suffering From IBS

The Trouble With Soda

Soda is one of the most prolific and tasty drinks that people purchase. Behind the taste, and behind the clever marketing you are going to find that it’s one of the worst things for your health. Even the diet and low calories varieties are going to cause you a great deal of distress. This becomes especially problematic if you have digestive issues, including IBS. Soda drinks cause gas to build up in your stomach and eventually within your intestines, causing discomfort and bloating. Drinks that have gas in them should really be avoided, if you are an IBS sufferer. 

I understand, this may not be a fun thing to learn about, especially if you need that caffeine rush in the afternoon and a diet cola is what you’ve been using to prevent crashing through the last few hours of work. The problems that are associate with even modest consumption of this liquid may surprise you.

Some more damages that are caused by soda drinks:

Wreaking Havoc on Teeth

Your smile is one of the things that you have to protect at all costs. Coffee and tea can stain teeth, but nothing causes as much damage to the enamel, cavities and more of your mouth than carbonated sugary drinks. The problem is found within the compounds of popular sodas today, using dyes, coloring agents, phosphorous, calcium, sulfides, and much more. It has been researched many times over and soda will eventually eat away at the enamel of your teeth and cause serious dental problems. The sugar can also seep into the gums and cause gingivitis, and more. Brushing and flossing does not rid the issue, as your enamel will get splashed with the chemicals over and over again. One of the most publicized experiments dealing with this issue, is that of placing a tooth in soda for a short time. The liquid eats through the entire tooth over time. It’s that bad.

Weight Gain From Sugar

It’s been well documented that refined sugars aren’t that good for you. It can cause weight gain, even in moderate doses. The problem with most soda is that it uses fake sugars, or highly altered sugar content such as high fructose corn syrup. Even diet sodas use a sweetener, and the issue becomes a matter of balance. Real sugar tells the brain when to stop, triggering a synapses to feel a level of fullness eventually. Obviously, people can ignore that and continue, but the body has certain mechanisms in place to warn the digestive system. The other types of sweeteners trick the brain, telling it that no sugar was consumed, or low levels have been, so the body doesn’t treat the incoming liquid the same way. This causes a person to drink more, and more as they will not feel satisfied and over time, 1 can doesn’t suffice, so 2 cans are needed or even a litre of cola is what is needed. This directly contributes to weight gain.

Digestive Problems

Major brands of soda today, and even some “healthy” alternatives will cause serious digestive issues. From bowel problems that will harden waste materials due to lack of water, to causing problems with IBS, soda is not a good thing for the body’s digestive system. It causes the pH levels to shift, and the body has to work hard to try and compensate for the liquid that is not directly absorbed like water. Eating food while drinking this liquid causes even more issues, as the acids that break down food are disrupted, and that can lead to indigestion, heart burn, and esophageal issues.

But wait, there’s more! This is just the beginning of the issues that you can face when drinking pop, soda, or carbonated sugary water. Even in “moderation” it’s a bad thing, as it offers not real nutritional value to the body at all. Empty calories, sugar, and a load of chemicals that are often not disclosed is what awaits you, beware.

Soda and carbonated drinks are only some of the things that IBS sufferers need to avoid, check out my other posts, for other food that are not recommended. if you have Irritable Bowel Syndrome.

Until next post, take good care.


About Larah

I have been suffering from Irritable Bowel Syndrome for many years, but it took a longtime to get a diagnosis, since then I have been following a low FODMAP diet, which has changed my life for the better. This is my story and experience with IBS and the low FODMAP diet.

17 comments on “Drinking Soda Soft Drinks When Suffering From IBS

  1. Hi Larah,
    I’ve read your post about IBS and carbonated drinks and I have a question I’d like to ask you.
    Do you feel, or know, that every drink with carbonic acid has bad effects? Also fodmap safe lemonade, mixed with carbonated water?
    A friend of mine suffers from IBS and is currently on a strict fodmap low diet. She still experiences quite a lot of pain and discomfort. Could it, in your opinion, be because of carbonated water? She drinks quite a lot of it, ironically to keep hydrated and make fibers do the work…
    Thanks in advance, and I wish you all the best with your struggle with IBS. Keep up the good work with your blog!
    Best regards

    • Hello Anne,
      Thank you for the compliments and for your message.
      I am not a health practitioner and my answer is purely based on my experience and research, but as an IBS sufferers I was always told to eliminate soda drinks. A part from the obvious sugar content, high fructose corn syrup and other artificial and harmful ingredients which are bad for everybody and even worst for IBS sufferers, all carbonated beverages, including carbonated water, release CO2, which can cause bloating, intestinal pain and trapped wind.
      If your friend would try to give up the carbonated water for a week, she will probably see an improvement on her IBS symptoms. Maybe she could just have a glass of still water with a few drops of fresh lemon juice instead.
      If she still doesn’t improve, there may be other food she is consuming that are low FODMAP, but they don’t agree with her. We all react different even to low FODMAP food.
      Please let me know how she does.
      All the best to you and your friend.

  2. I use soda to clean my toilet. (No kidding!) I found that it is cheaper than my disinfectant.
    After I stopped drinking sodas, I have lost like 5 kilos! No kidding there either. But somehow, once you get the taste of it, it is like no choice but to get kinda addicted. Had to fight back a lot hard.
    Nice info though. Thanks.

    • I do to Diana! LOL I stopped drinking soda years ago, just can’t take the acid and when my hormones changed the taste of soda change drastically for me (thank goodness) and now it taste HORRIBLE! The bad thing is by time my taste had change it had already caused the problems on my teeth and my poor Dentist had to work all those years to help save my choppers.

      I work right next to a woman that still drinks soda (hardcore) every morning when she comes into the office and I see the huge weight gain and digestive problems she is dealing with personally. Keep in mind she is drinking about 1 of those big bottles of Dr. Pepper every day…can you imagine! It’s on her desk right now, I just looked…sorry not meaning to gossip but I see it and believe it. Great article Larah and so truthful.

      • Your colleague must have an addiction to Dr. Pepper, that is crazy to drink that much soda in one day. A part from the weight gain, I can’t imagine what that would do to her organs and teeth, so so bad. Maybe she doesn’t realise how bad it is for her. If you have the chance, show her a health article on what soda drinks do to our bodies. Before being diagnosed with IBS I used to have a can of Pepsi Max a day, I knew it was bad for me, but I felt I needed a kick in the mid afternoon at work. Now that I am eating healthier, I feel I have already so much more energy that I don’t need any other stimulant. We are what we eat and drink I guess.

  3. Only thing soda is good for is cleaning! It really is bad for your health and something i need to avoid due to my IBS. Try telling the kids it’s not good for them!

    • Very well said Donna and it is such a big industry, water is always best when it comes to drinks, especially for IBS sufferers.

  4. Thanks Larah for providing useful information on effects of soda on our body and health. We often tend to taste compared to health. And it’s not so that we are always ignorant about its effects. Many of us would already be aware about what soda can do, but still when in a group or in some events, we can not control our desire to have it, and we go for it consciously. But such an article from you inspires to keep control over such a desire.

    • Hi James, yes it is best to avoid those fizzy, sugary, artificial drinks, no matter IBS or not. Thanks for stopping by.

  5. That was a beautiful description for the common man.
    Your intake of carbonated drinks can also affect your management of IBS. These beverages contribute to gas buildup within the abdominal area. When gas isn’t passed, it accumulates in the intestines, causing bloating. This bloating can lead to abdominal discomfort, including both dull and sharp pains in the area. Carbonated drinks are one of the main dietary causes of these effects and should be avoided if you have IBS.

  6. Soda definitely is known as one of the worst drinks, regardless of whether or not IBS is present. It’s very acidic with citric acids, and has artificial flavorings plus an abundance of sugar. I was never aware of pH level alteration in the body by soda intake, but it being true makes it even worse. IBS needs a level of balance and homeostasis. Soda ruins almost all necessities IBS people should have. Plus weight gain leads to hormonal imbalance to add on. Great post, definitely awards soda as one of the worst drinks to consume for IBS..

    • Thanks for your comment Sam. I used to get my Pepsi Max fix in the mid afternoon, at work, to keep me going, but no more. Only herbal and green teas now.

  7. Wow! Soda sounds so much worse than I ever thought! It makes me want to go to the fridge right now and dump it all down the drain. I think I will! Thank you for posting this article, it really is eye-opening!

    • Thanks for stopping by Francis. I always knew that soda drinks were bad, but only after my recent research I found out the damage they can cause.

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