Drinking just one sugar-sweetened soda a day can be enough to increase your risk of developing type 2 diabetes by more than 20 percent, according to a report in the journal Diabetologia.
The work, conducted by Imperial College London researchers, focused on the consumption of juices, nectars, and sugar-sweetened sodas by 350,000 participants across Europe.
The researchers found that, after adjusting for other factors, consumption of one 12oz (336ml) sugar-sweetened soda per day increased the risk of type 2 diabetes by 22 percent. This increased risk fell slightly to 18 percent when total energy intake and body-mass index (BMI) were accounted for. This, say the researchers, could indicate that the effect of sugar-sweetened sodas on diabetes goes beyond its effect on body weight.
The study also noted a significant increase in type 2 diabetes incidence related to artificially sweetened soft drink consumption. However, this association disappeared after taking into account the BMI of participants; likely indicating that the association was not causal but driven by the weight of participants.
Pure fruit juice and nectar consumption was not significantly associated with diabetes incidence; however it was not possible using the data available to study separately the effect of 100% pure juices from those with added sugars.
The authors say the increased risk of diabetes among sugar-sweetened soft drink consumers in Europe is similar to that found in previous studies conducted mostly in North America (that found a 25 percent increased risk of type 2 diabetes associated with one 12 oz daily increment of sugar-sweetened beverage consumption).
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