It has been well established that sodas can place you at risk of multiple diseases, but even two sugary drinks per day can affect your health to a level that is highly alarming.
- Over half of the population in American daily consumes sugary beverages
- Just one or two sugary drinks per day can cause health risks
- It increases the chance of heart problems (35%), diabetes (26%), and stroke (16%)
Around the population of the United States, almost 50% consume sugary beverages on a daily basis, with 5% of them even getting 500 calories per day from sodas. The U.S. guidelines for recommended calorie intake has advised that only 10% of the portion per day should be sugar.
Researchers have conducted studies on the damage many sugary drinks cause to our systems, ranging from energy drinks, to sodas, or even fruit drinks. They place the population at an unnecessarily heightened risk of health problems that might’ve been avoided. This is mostly due to the high concentration of fructose containing sucrose, and high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS).
The study has uncovered that by consuming between 1 and 2 servings of sugary beverages per day (estimated to be 300 ml per serving), it can dangerously impact our health and life. It heightens the risk of cardiovascular diseases by 35%, of type 2 diabetes by 26%, and of stroke by 16%.
Even a relatively small portion per day can lead to unfortunate conditions.
The abuse of sugary beverages also causes weight gain, which can later on turn into diabetes. This is often because drinks, such as sodas, are not taken into consideration when it comes to daily calorie intake. In fact, most pair them with their meals. Considering they lack a significant nutrition factor, they’re often dismissed and only serve to add to the daily calorie intake.
This increased risk underlines “the urgent need for public health strategies that reduce the consumptions of these drinks”, according to Dr. Frank Hu, a nutrition professor at Harvard School of Public Health.
Between the 1970s and 1990s, the use of high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS) has lifted by 1000% in multiple commercial products. The body handles HFCS and sugar differently, but they’re often found in combination. It places strain on our system, similar to fructose.
Fructose is a common ingredient in sodas, or even bread, and it has been explained how it breaks apart in our body. While our liver is perfectly able to process fructose quickly, it’s then met with the unexpected amount of sugar that it simply cannot handle. The excess sugar is stored into fat, and some of that fat is further sent to our bloodstream, which causes high levels of triglyceride.
The study underlines that even in what could be considered small amounts, the regular consumption of sugary beverages can have a severe impact on our health. It might not be the ultimate solution to the worrying numbers of diabetes cases or heart problems, but it would be a step forward.
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