Both sugar-sweetened and diet soft drinks linked to a higher risk of death, says study

Both sugar-sweetened and diet soft drinks linked to a higher risk of death, says study

Consuming two glasses (at around 250ml each) of soft drinks per day was tied to associated with a higher risk of death in the population-based cohort study of 451,743 people across 10 European countries.

The authors found that greater consumption of artificially sweetened soft drinks was positively associated with deaths from circulatory diseases, and sugar-sweetened soft drinks were associated with deaths from digestive diseases.

The authors believe their study is the largest to date to investigate the association between soft drink consumption and mortality.

However, they acknowledge the observational design of the study means it cannot establish causality.

10 country study

Published in JAMA Internal Medicine, the study covered Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Spain, Sweden, and the United Kingdom. The researchers recruited a study cohort of 451,743 participants between 1992 and 2000 and recorded their soft drink consumption. 

Over the following years (up to 2012) 41,693 deaths occurred in the cohort. Higher mortality (from any cause) was found among people who consumed two or more glasses per day of soft drinks, compared to those who drank less than one glass per month. This included both sugar-sweetened soft drinks and artificially sweetened soft drinks.

“In this large multinational European study, higher level of consumption of total, sugar-sweetened, and artificially sweetened soft drinks was associated with increased risk of death from all causes,” ​write researchers in the study.  

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