Thought drinking a can of Coke was bad for your body? Well, it seems you’re not much safer drinking the diet version, either.

Last week, UK pharmacist Niraj Naik, author of The Renegade Pharmacist blog, delivered some home truths on what drinking one can of Coke puts your body through

Fizzy drink fans were shocked to discover that the amount of sugar a can contains should be enough to make you vomit.

[Related story: This is what happens to your body when you drink a can of Coke]

But if they thought that switching from the regular version to Diet Coca-Cola was going to keep their body out of harm’s way, The Renegade Pharmacist has quashed that idea with his latest findings.

On his blog, Niraj commented: “Findings from a variety of studies show that routine consumption of diet sodas, even one per day, can be connected to higher likelihood of heart disease, stroke, diabetes, metabolic syndrome and high blood pressure, in addition to contributing to weight gain.”

Marisa Peer a behavioural psychologist and a world renowned expert in eating disorders said: “As Diet Coke has no calories and no recognised ingredients, we know it is a cocktail of chemicals that encourage your body to gain and store weight, especially on your legs and bottom away from your organs. Diet drinks are not good for your body, your health or even, as it turns out, for dieting.

“It is very common to see clients who are overweight who drink Diet Coke, who then eat a plate of chips or reach for the cake. This is because drinking a ‘diet drink’ like Diet Coke makes them feel it is now OK to eat whatever they want.”

While his research and findings on both this and the Coke findings has been questioned, Niraj added: “Please do your own research, do not take my word as gospel. Look at all the evidence out there, so you can make a well-informed decision.”

A spokesperson from Coca-Cola said last week in response to the findings: “People have enjoyed drinking a Coca-Cola for more than 129 years. Like all soft drinks, it is perfectly safe to drink and can be enjoyed as part of a balanced diet and lifestyle.  We provide a choice of colas to meet the needs of different consumers, including options that are lower sugar, sugar free and caffeine free.”

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