A recent study conducted by researchers at Tufts University has found that sugary sodas such as Coke, Pepsi, Fanta, Sprite or Orange Crush, as well as energy drinks such as Red Bull, Power Horse or Burn, all might be responsible for death of 184.000 adults worldwide, on a yearly basis. Out of all of those 25.000 are American citizens.
It is important to note, however, that these deaths have all been recorded among people who were suffering from either diabetes, cancer or heart disease. The study does not mention whether or not sugary sodas and energy drinks can or can not have such a severe effect on healthy individuals as well.
To be specific, the study mentioned that 133.000 of the deaths were recorded among diabetes patients, 45.000 of the deaths were recorded among heart disease patients, and 6.450 of the deaths were recorded among cancer patients.
Dr. Dariush Mozaffarian, senior author and dean at Tufts University’s Friedman School of Nutrition Science & Policy firmly believes that these beverages should be removed from the food supply as they are a dietary factor that has no intrinsic health value, and on top it, also causes tens of thousands of deaths every years.
For their study, the study, published earlier this week, on Monday (June 29, 2015), in the journal Circulation, Dr. Mozaffarian and his team looked at data gathered by 62 dietary surveys conducted between the years of 1980 and 2010, by researchers in 51 different countries, adding up to a total of 611.971 subjects. In addition to these, they also examined the national availability of sugar of 187 countries.
The main culprits that the searchers were looking afor were sugar-sweetened sodas, energy drinks, sports drinks, sweetened ice teas and plain fruit drinks, as well as frescas and other homemade sugary drinks. In order to be taken into consideration, all the beverages had to contain 50 kilocalories per serving the very least. As a direct result, homemade homemade drinks that were 100 percent (100%) natural fruit juice were not a concern for the researchers.
The results showed that the effects these sugary beverages had on people varied tremendously based on how popular they were in each country and each demographic.
The most affected region turned out to be Latin America, with Mexico alone having 405 adult deaths per million, making it the place with the most deaths caused by sugary drinks. The United States came in at second place, with 125 adult deaths per million.
Dr. Mozaffarian and his team did offer an explanation for the high number of deaths recorded in Mexico, theorizing that the problem might be the difficulty with which one finds safe drinking water in the region.
The American Beverage Association believes that people should not be alarmed as there is a weak link between sugary beverages and death. The association gave a statement informing that “This study does not show that consuming sugar-sweetened beverages causes chronic diseases and the authors themselves acknowledge that they are at best estimating effects of sugar-sweetened beverage consumption”.
Dr. Mozaffarian, on the other hand, argues that there is an indirect link since sugary beverages lead to the development of conditions such as obesity, diabetes and heart disease, which in turn can lead to death.
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