Sugary Drinks Increase Risk of Heart Disease

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Harvard researchers say soda and sports drinks increase risk of dying from heart disease and breast and colon cancers

KEY POINTS
  • The more sugary drinks a person drinks, the greater their risk of dying from heart disease, the study finds.
  • Sweet beverages were associated with a moderately higher risk of dying from breast cancer or colon cancer.
  • The study adds to a growing body of research on how sugary drinks may negatively affect one’s health.
GP: Coca-Cola Pepsi vending machines soda pop sales
Coca-Cola Co. and Pepsi Co. soda machines stand in a shopping center parking lot in Jasper, Indiana.
Luke Sharrett | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Drinking soda, sports drinks and other sugary beverages increases the risk of dying from heart disease and some types of cancers, according to new research.

Harvard researchers found that the more sweetened beverages a person drank, the greater their risk of dying from heart disease. In a study published Monday in the American Heart Association’s journal Circulation, they also found sugary drinks were associated with a moderately higher risk of dying from breast cancer or colon cancer.

Drinking artificially sweetened drinks did not produce the same effects. However, women who drank more than four diet beverages per day died at a higher rate than other groups, particularly from heart disease. Lead author Vasanti Malik warned that this statistic might be inflated because people could have switched from drinking regular soda.

Added sugars should make up less than 10 percent of the total calories a person consumes per day, according to federal health guidelines. For a person consuming 2,000 calories per day, that equates to no more than 200 calories. The average can of soda contains 150 calories, or 75 percent of a person’s daily allowance.

 

 

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