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Once again research finds that drinking sugar sweetened soft drinks or fruit drinks (not juices) is unhealthy. This time a study found that drinking one or more such beverages daily was linked to a higher rate of liver cancer and death from chronic liver diseases, when compared to those drinking 3 or fewer such drinks per month.

This is an important finding because the majority of adults in the US consume one or more sweetened beverages daily! On the other hand, in this study drinking one or more artificially sweetened soda and drinks daily did not have an increased rate of liver cancer or death from chronic liver disease.

By the way, the researchers kept referring to the sweetener as sugar, but in reality the sweetener in (almost) all such beverages is high fructose corn syrup.

Excerpts from Science Daily: Women who consumed sugar sweetened beverage daily had higher risk of developing liver cancer and chronic liver disease

Approximately 65% of adults in the United States consume sugar sweetened beverages daily. Chronic liver disease is a major cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide and can result in liver cancer and liver disease-related mortality. ...continue reading "Drinking Soda and Fruit Drinks Daily Linked to Risk of Liver Cancer and Death From Chronic Liver Diseases"

Seriously? One daily soda ages us? Amazing. From Medical Daily:

Drinking Soda Each Day Has Accelerating Effect On Cellular Aging, May Cut 4.6 Years Off Life

While consuming sugary soft drinks is often associated with a higher risk of obesity, metabolic syndrome, diabetes, cardiovascular death, and certain types of cancer, new research suggests that it can also shorten our lifespan. A recent study conducted at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) has revealed that drinking soda frequently can shorten the length of telomeres within white blood cells, which can be used as a predictor for human lifespan.

“Regular consumption of sugar-sweetened sodas might influence disease development, not only by straining the body’s metabolic control of sugars, but also through accelerated cellular aging of tissues,” Dr. Elissa Epel, professor of psychiatry at UCSF and senior author of the study, said in a statement.

Epel and her colleagues gathered data using the National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys from 1999 to 2002. The study’s sample included 5,309 U.S. adults between the ages of 20 and 65 with no history of diabetes or cardiovascular disease. Participants were asked to recall their diet in the past 24 hours, and researchers used DNA samples to measure telomere length. On average, participants consumed 12 ounces of soda, while around 21 percent reported drinking at least 20 ounces of soda each day.

UCSF researchers determined that drinking 20 ounces of soda a day was linked to 4.6 years of additional biological aging. This conclusion was made by assessing the way telomere length shortens with chronological age. The effect drinking soda had on telomere shortening was comparable to smoking or, in the opposite, anti-aging direction, regular exercise. Previous studies have also associated telomere shortening with chronic diseases of aging, such as heart disease, diabetes, and certain types of cancer.

“This is the first demonstration that soda is associated with telomere shortness,” Epel added. “This finding held regardless of age, race, income, and education level. Telomere shortening starts long before disease onset.  Further, although we only studied adults here, it is possible that soda consumption is associated with telomere shortening in children, as well.”