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What Happens to Kidneys If You Drink Diet Coke & No Water?

by
author image Dustin Bogle
Dustin Bogle is an experienced personal trainer, group fitness instructor, nutritionist and fitness article writer. His articles have been featured in "Daily Press" newspaper and "Fresh Ink" newspaper.
What Happens to Kidneys If You Drink Diet Coke & No Water?
Three women drinking bottles of Diet Coke while socializing at an event. Photo Credit Sonia Recchia/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images

When a person drinks Diet Coke instead of water, serious medical conditions will arise. Not drinking water will have a negative effect primarily on the kidneys. Diet Coke appeals to diabetics and to those who are dieting because it has no sugar or calories. Diet Coke has ingredients such as phosphoric acid, sodium, high fructose corn syrup, caffeine and aspartame; if not moderately consumed, these ingredients can cause health problems.

Function

The kidneys perform many functions in order to keep the blood in your body clean and chemically balanced. According to the National Kidney and Urologic Disease Information Clearinghouse, each day the kidneys process around 200 qts. of blood to filter out around 2 qts. of extra water and waste products; the extra water and waste flow to the bladder through the ureter tubes, and are stored in the bladder as urine until the body releases it through urination.

Significance

Certain foods are either acidic or alkaline. The pH level of the blood fluctuates depending on the the food you consume. The blood pH level is normally 7.34 to 7.45, slightly on the alkaline side. Diet Coke, or any any soda, has a pH of around 2.51 — it's the most acidic beverage you can drink, according to eMed Expert website. Water has a pH level of 7.0 (neutral) and battery acid has a pH level of 1.0. Diet Coke contains phosphoric acid, and when it mixes with the hydrochloric acid in the stomach, it can affect the stomach's functions. Food may remain undigested which will cause bloating, gas and indigestion, according to eMed Expert.

Effects

According to Medline Plus, A Service of the U.S. National Library of Medicine, one of the primary functions of the kidneys and lungs is to help restore and maintain proper pH. Research has proven that drinking cola in large quantities will result in kidney problems, specifically kidney stones, eMed Expert notes. In order for your body to maintain a healthy blood pH of 7.34 to 7.45, it must buffer the acidity of the soda with alkaline minerals. Kidney stones form when your urine has various minerals and acids that are out of balance; calcium is one alkaline mineral that buffers the acid in your body; as the calcium is eliminated through your urine it may, over time, form kidney stones.

Identification

According to the Mayo Clinic website, water makes up about 60 percent of your body weight and is one of the most important chemical components of your body. Water is important in flushing out toxins from your vital organs, it helps carry nutrients to your cells and it provides your tissues with a moist environment. Dehydration can result from a lack of water. If you don't get an adequate amount of water daily your body will not function properly. According to the Mayo Clinic, a healthy diet includes 64 oz. of water a day.

Considerations

One of the most harmful ingredients in Diet Coke is the artificial sweetener aspartame, according to eMed Expert. The three chemicals that make up aspartame, aspartic acid, phenylalanine and methanol, will form known carcinogens, such as formaldehyde and formic acid once digested, according to eMed Expert. However, the FDA has said aspartame is a safe additive. Caffeine is a known diuretic, which means that you will urinate more frequently, and you will actually become more thirsty after drinking a Diet Coke. According to Mayo Clinic, drinking 500 to 600 mg of caffeine daily can be harmful to the body and cause irregular heartbeat, tension, insomnia, muscle tremors and irritability.

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