Daily Soda Raises Risk of Heart Attack by 35%
A new review—the largest and most comprehensive of its kind—reports that daily consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages (SSBs) is associated with a 35% increased risk of heart attack or fatal heart disease.
The report also examines the risk of developing type 2 diabetes and stroke associated with SSB consumption, and the role of fructose in the development of these conditions and obesity.
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In order to explore effects of added sugars, researchers conducted a review of data from recent epidemiological studies and meta-analyses.
They found that consumption of 1-2 SSBs per day was linked to a 26% higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes, a 35% increased risk of heart attack or fatal heart disease, and a 16% increased risk of stroke.
After examining the role of fructose in weight gain and the development of metabolic conditions, researchers explained that “part of the problem is how fructose behaves in the body.” Unlike glucose, which is absorbed directly into the bloodstream, fructose is metabolized in the liver and converted into triglycerides, which can lead to fatty liver disease and insulin resistance.
“Since we rarely consume fructose in isolation, the major source of fructose in the diet comes from fructose-containing sugars, sucrose and high fructose corn syrup, in sugar-sweetened beverages,” they wrote.
“Although reducing the consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages or added sugar alone is unlikely to solve the obesity epidemic entirely, limiting intake is one simple change that will have a measurable impact on weight control and prevention of cardio-metabolic diseases,” they concluded.
Malik VS, Hu FB. What the evidence from sugar-sweetened beverages tells us. J Am Coll Cardiol. 2015;66(14):1615-1624.