20-Somethings - How is diet coke a trigger?

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06-14-2009, 09:23 PM
Hey everyone,

I've heard a lot of people say that diet coke is a "trigger" for them and that it can make you gain instead of lose weight.

What do they mean by trigger? And how can it make you gain if there are 0 calories (0 WW points)?

I'm on WW and I find diet coke makes me feel full when i'm hungry and have no points left. But I never ever go over my points so how could this potentially make me gain weight?

Thanks for the input!

06-14-2009, 09:27 PM
Hi there! I think that for some, any cold fizzy drink has always been accompanied by chips or chocolate or some other treat food. Just like, at the bars, there are always nuts or pretzels out on the bar, because when salty foods are out to snack on, beer sales go through the roof! So for lots of people, beer and, well beer nuts, go hand in hand.
For me, diet Ginger Ale is a great cold fizzy drink and I LOVE it and I have it all the time because I feel full after it and that helps me keep on my WW points. But diet Root Beer always makes me want to have ice cream, because ice cream floats used to rock my world. So I stay away from diet Root Beer because it "triggers" my irrational desire for ice cream!!! So the diet Root Beer by itself doesn't cause me to gain weight, it is the ice cream that would I have with it that does...



06-14-2009, 09:30 PM
Well, I don't think that it IS a trigger for everyone. We're all different.

I think when some folks say that it's a trigger for them, they mean it to say that it brings on cravings for sweets. You then eat those sweets and you gain weight. It's not that the soda in and of itself causes one to gain weight, just the added calories if you should decide to give into those cravings.

For me, it's not a trigger. I don't drink it all that often though. I save it up for social events and things like that. When I'm trying to avoid the real hard core calorie laden sweets.

06-14-2009, 09:32 PM
There have been studies that show that consuming sucralose or aspartame (the artificial sweeteners commonly found in diet soda) can trick your body into thinking that sweet things don't contain calories, and make you more likely to binge when you have real sugar.

In other words, in these studies, the rats who consumed artificial sweeteners gained more weight than those who consumed real sweeteners. I think the same study's been done with people too, and people who consumed diet beverages were more likely to gain weight than those who consumed regular sodas.

06-14-2009, 09:33 PM
I have read many times that when you consume something sweet, your body assumes that there will be calories along with it. With diet soda, there are no calories so your body actually begins to crave sugar, more so than if you had not had the diet soda. It has been mentioned by many posters around here that drinking diet soda causes cravings.

06-14-2009, 10:17 PM
sugar substitute makes me hungry more . Like stomach growling hungry then I need something else to eat. I have to be careful when I drink coke zero, which I absolutely love.

06-14-2009, 10:36 PM
I don't know. It sort of does the opposite for me. Diet Coke seems to solve my sweet tooth craving. However, I only drink fountain cokes no cans or bottles for me- I ONLY like it from the fountain. I don't drink it daily but when I do have it, I have a big one which isn't that great I guess. I notice that I'm LESS hungry after having a DC so I guess it's true that everyone is different.

06-14-2009, 11:14 PM
I love love love diet coke. I never really drank regular coke, even before The Diet, but I always turned my nose up at anything diet. But just like anything, you just have to get used to it. Problem was, while I would drink maybe 3 or 4 regular sodas/day, I would drink 7 or 8 cans of diet coke. Why is a mystery to me. At any rate, soda in itself is not exactly a health drink, and while diet coke is better, no coke is best, so I don't keep it in the fridge anymore. Makes me much more likely to get a glass and some water from the dispenser on the door of the fridge, as this is most convenient. I just like to have something cold to drink.
Some people can't handle any sweets and this, I think, is where it becomes an issue. But bear in mind that diet coke still is the better choice, and weight loss is just a bunch of better choices strung together.

06-14-2009, 11:27 PM
Not a trigger for me.Better than some alternatives, like juice or reg pop.I drink 1 a day.

06-15-2009, 12:55 AM
For me, diet drinks are a HUGE HUGE elephant-sized trigger, but not for sweet foods. Diet Coke (or whatever else) makes me crave salt like crazy. Since salt by itself is gross, I ate it on top of something else- Popcorn, nachos, pretzels, cocktail peanuts, anything with salt. Unfortunately, popcorn, peanuts, etc, have calories. Lots of calories. So, no diet drinks for me.

06-15-2009, 01:05 AM
I'm one that doesn't have an issue with it. I maybe have one DC a day. It actually satisfies me when I'm craving something sweet which is normally right after lunch. Otherwise... sorry, I have NO cravings, ever. But I think you have to believe in cravings to have them (and my after lunch sweet-thing IS a brain thing, not a body thing).

06-15-2009, 01:09 AM
I used to drink 2 diet Cokes every morning starting at 8 am. The first thing I would do when I sat at my desk was to crack open a diet Coke. Once I stopped, I realized that drinking them made me feel hungry whether or not I actually WAS hungry. My stomach would start growling and I would want to eat.

I don't drink them in the morning anymore. I will still drink one with lunch and do drink them on the weekends, but I don't do the morning diet Cokes anymore. I don't have to deal with the false hunger, and I also have had WAY fewer migraines.

06-15-2009, 01:14 AM
idk bc i am a diet coke addict... i swear it's like crack to me i drink them every day and often... i also drink a lot of water i guess i just drink a lot period.

Secret Swan
06-15-2009, 01:33 AM
I drink them like I have an iv. But they don't make me hungry-the opposite, in fact.

06-15-2009, 02:15 AM
I associate diet coke with heavier foods, like cheeseburgers, nachos, fried chicken, etc. And it definitely increased my appetite.

It's not as big as a trigger as beer is. I drink a beer, and all of a sudden all I can think about are French fries, lol. But I drink maybe two or three beers a month, if that. I used to drink three to four diet Cokes a DAY, so diet Coke was definitely a more serious and more unhealthy beverage for me. I'm down to about a can every two days.

06-15-2009, 05:52 AM
i think it has something to do with the artificial sweetener they use in diet cokes.

06-15-2009, 08:30 AM
I used to drink diet coke every day when I was working in a candy store lol. It gave me that sweet that I always crave, and also filled me up. Ok along with filling me up it nearly always makes me bloated, I believe it is the aspartame. When I'm craving sweets like mad, diet coke doesn't get rid of that craving, the only thing that does is fruit.

06-15-2009, 09:14 AM
I`ve heard all what you all said and also that the body still secretes insulin with diet coke, even though it does not contain sugar. For me, it is definitely a trigger and I`m better off not having it (although I still succumb very rarely).


06-15-2009, 02:07 PM
I drink Diet Pepsi every.single.day. I've tried to quit because of all the talk about artificial sweeteners, but I'm completely addicted to the quick easy caffeine. Quittin smoking was much easier for me than quitting caffeine.

My cravings are affected WAY more by any intake of real sugar than they are by fake sugar, but there is real science behind this stuff. It's all in trial and error. If drinking diet pop makes your brain think you're hungry, it's probably not a great idea to drink it all the time.

hello pinki
06-15-2009, 03:00 PM
I allow myself one coke a week, so I go all out and get full on regular Coke. I'm originally from a border state and spent a lot of time in Mexico and Mexican Coke is the sweetest coke ever. If I drink Diet Coke I'm not as satisfied as I would be and find that I want MORE to fill that void.

Hello Nurse
06-15-2009, 03:06 PM
I am a Diet Dr. Pepper fan myself, and like the commercials, it does seem like a sweet treat for me. It does not seem to trigger me to eat. I used to drink several per day, but I went off them for a while when I was sick and noticed my migraines stopped. So, now I only have them occasionally, and when I do have one I am almost guaranteed a headache. Not sure if it is the caffeine or the artificial sweetener, but it happens also when I have a skinny latte (which also has caffeine & artificial sweetener, so either could be the culprit!)

06-15-2009, 03:16 PM
Um, despite the internet articles that say that your body secretes insulin because you taste something sweet, this is NOT the case. From the Mayo Clinic: http://mayoclinic.com/health/artificial-sweeteners/MY00073

People with diabetes may use artificial sweeteners because they make food taste sweet without raising blood sugar levels.

Your body secretes insulin as a reaction to raised blood sugar. You may TASTE something sweet, but your blood sugars do not rise. This is why diet sodas are ok for insulin-dependent diabetics. You MAY see raised blood sugar levels if the artificial sweetners that you use contain calories, such as sorbitol or mannitol or because of the proteins/fats/flour in "sugar free" products such as cookies or cakes.

But keep in mind that if you do have diabetes, some foods containing artificial sweeteners, such as sugar-free yogurt, can still affect your blood sugar level due to other carbohydrates or proteins in the food. Some foods labeled "sugar-free" — such as sugar-free cookies and chocolates — may contain sweeteners, such as sorbitol or mannitol, which contain calories and can affect your blood sugar level. Some sugar-free products may also contain flour, which will raise blood sugar levels. Also, remember that foods containing sugar substitutes may also contain calories that may undermine your ability to lose weight and control blood sugar.

Since Diet Sodas don't have proteins/fats/flour, the artificial sweetners used have so FEW calories that they don't raise your blood sugar levels to any appreciable level. Which is why diabetics can use diet sodas as a "free food" without having to count the carbs. Unless, of course, one is drinking huge amounts every day, as the carbs add up:


I'll take the Mayo Clinic and the Endocrineweb resources over "Fitness Planet Slamming Weight Training personal blog" any day! :lol:


06-15-2009, 05:51 PM
I'll take the Mayo Clinic and the Endocrineweb resources over "Fitness Planet Slamming Weight Training personal blog" any day!

so true

thanks for the info!