Making the switch to diet and sugar-free soft drinks and soda ? According to experts, it probably won’t help you maintain a healthy weight.

A new study from Imperial College London and two Brazilian universities found that, when compared to sugary drinks, artificially-sweetened beverages (ASBs) could be be no better for weight loss or preventing gain.

Read: Weight Loss Health Benefits: Drinking Water Instead Of Diet Beverages May Help Diabetes Patients

ASBs have been generally viewed as harmless to your health, but this could be a misconception. The new study has found that these beverages might trigger compensatory food intake by stimulating the body’s sweet taste receptors.

Researchers found that there was no evidence that ASBs aid weight loss or prevent weight gain compared with the full sugar versions, Medical XPress reported.

"A common perception, which may be influenced by industry marketing, is that because 'diet' drinks have no sugar, they must be healthier and aid weight loss when used as a substitute for full sugar versions. However we found no solid evidence to support this," said researcher Christopher Millett, according to Medical XPress .

Read: The Anti-Migraine Diet: Foods And Ingredients That Can Trigger Headaches

This study is part of a growing body of research showing that major health risks are associated with consuming diet beverages. Recent findings have also linked both diet and regular soda to possibly compromising a woman’s fertility and chances of successful artificial reproduction.

What should you drink instead? A study published in October found that patients with Type 2 diabetes looking to drop weight may want to swap out diet beverages for water. That's probably a healthy choice for everyone.

Source: Borges MC, Louzada ML, Laverty AA, Parra DC, Monteiro CA, Millett C, et al. Artificially Sweetened Beverages and the Response to the Global Obesity Crisis. PLOS Medicine. 2017.

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