Is there any real evidence that diet drinks are bad for you – or is it all just opinion?

Ask Bitten Jonsson

Is there any real evidence that diet drinks are bad for you – or is it all just opinion? And is it normal to feel bloated when you start out on a low-carb diet?

These and other questions are answered this week by our food-addiction expert, Bitten Jonsson, RN:

Is there any real evidence that diet drinks are bad for you – or is it all just opinion?

I’ve seen you comment, in response to questions about diet sodas, “…diet sodas are chemical sugar water…” and “…diet drinks are chemical expensive colored liquids…” and that they’re “[real] bad for you”.

There seems to be a lot of that kind of opinion in the diet world that zero-carb sodas are drinks of the devil – or some such. However, I have never, ever, seen any evidence or justification for that view – just attitude. So I’m really and genuinely interested to know what evidence there might be?


Hi Dave,

Based on my knowledge and opinion, and also experience from thousands of clients with sugar addiction. Diet sodas do not work. People become addicted to them, many have caffeine in them and they trigger cravings, they fool the body into thinking it is sugar. So I advice you to read up on that. I strongly advice against them. I do not se any use for them at all.


More info and links to studies on diet drinks

Is it normal to feel bloated on low carb?

First, this is my second attempt. Then I listened to your video about being addicted to carbs – you comment on the stages of carb addiction and hit home – I’ve blamed everything on menopause, depression etc. – but no, it’s addiction to carbs and my secret gorging on chocolate and ice cream!

Second, in my second week I feel very bloated? Is this expected?

Thank you again,

Hi Sarah,

Yes it is very common and it will pass, drink plenty of water.


Should certain types of seafood be limited on low carb?

There are very few recipes with shrimp or crab meat on the website. My family really enjoys seafood. Should certain types of seafood be limited or avoided?


Hello Angie,

I eat seafood a lot, maybe it is because there’s hardly any fat in them, but just add fat and then you are doing LCHF.



Earlier Q&A with Bitten

No Sweets of Any Kind, Ever?

How to Deal with Unsupportive Family Members?

What Should I Do After a Slip Up?

Can You Drink Diet Soda on a Low-Carb Diet?

What Sweetener Should You Use Instead of Sugar?

Dealing with Emotional Eating

Losing Willpower at Night and Eating

Addicted to Nuts?

More Questions and Answers

Read all earlier questions and answers – and ask your own! – here:

Ask Bitten Jonsson, RN, About Food Addiction – for members (free trial available)

Top food addiction videos

  • What is sugar addiction?
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Full Sugar Addiction Course >

One comment

  1. Kay
    I'm very disappointed with Bitten's response to Dave's question. He asked for evidence and she reiterated her opinion as though it were evidence. If she were tracking the results of her clients who use diet sodas and do not, her experience might qualify as evidence, but as it is she's just relaying anecdotal evidence that is likely coloured by her beliefs.

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