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Real Life Diet Questions Answered

Angela Dowden

Posted 28 Jun 12

How much diet lemonade is too much?

I've been drinking a lot of diet lemonade today as I was up during the night with a urine urgency and frequency problem. I've had tea and coffee (decaf) too. I noticed sodium citrate among the ingredients of lemonade, and thought it might help, and I think it is helping, (still to get through the night though). If I drink diet lemonade occasionally to replace other drinks, and help my diet, how much per day would be too much? (it might stave off the urine problem if I feel it coming back).

Our expert says...

Thanks for your query.

If you're being troubled with increased urinary frequency and urgency, I'd suggest you ask your pharmacist for advice. It sounds like you have cystitis and one of the symptomatic treatments is indeed citrate (the same ingredient that is in your diet lemonade), but you may not be having the right dose. Nor does this  "treatment"  actually cure - the citrate only gives symptomatic relief by making the urine more alkaline. Severe cystitis that does not clear up after a few days may need treatment with antibiotics.

As far as having lots of diet drink is concerned, that is fine for a short time , but not advisable over the longer term. as these still have lots of additives and ingredients that can cause tooth erosion. Water, tea, herbal tea and coffee all count towards your fluid intake and are other options that will help you rely on diet drinks a little less! Just as a general principle I'd say maybe one diet drink a day is fine, but try not to have more.

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