Sunday night, we gathered for a belated birthday party for my sister-in-law. My side of the family had just spent 3 hours prepping my dad's house for his homecoming next week and I was worn out. I decided to have a Diet Coke with my slices of pizza even though I don't really like Diet Coke and try to avoid diet sodas in general. I'd rather have a regular soda once in a while than a diet soda daily. Real sugar beats processed sugar.
Diet sodas tend to leave me feeling a little shaky but I didn't have any side effects Sunday night. So I grabbed another soda for the road but waited until Monday at lunch time to drink it. I even watered it down by pouring it over ice. This was at about 1:30.
As I left work for the day and made my way to visit my dad, I started to get very agitated. On edge. Anxious. I started listening to a funny podcast to distract me but that didn't work. I had a long drive ahead of me but no traffic that made me angry. I decided it was that Diet Coke, the second in 20 hours, that left me with those horrible feelings. I stopped to get some water and drank as much as I could, hoping it would "wash" out the soda and calm me down but it didn't work. It took another couple of hours for the feelings to completely go away. In fact, as I was driving through a hilly, windy residential section last night, I felt nearly intoxicated. It was scary!
I know soda is bad and I know diet soda is even worse. Sure, no calories sounds good but the artificial sweeteners are REALLY BAD. Anything that gives you anxiety like I had should not be ingested. I wonder if people who drink a lot of diet soda just become immune to these side effects?
I just googled "diet soda and anxiety" and found this article on Livestrong.com. I can say with honesty that when I drink a Diet Pepsi, I don't experience the same effects. But I think I have learned my lesson and will stick with water from now on.