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Tuesday, 09 March 2010 01:47

Sugary drinks: Increased diabetes risk

A University of California study shows convincing evidence that the excessive use of sugar-sweetened beverages has caused tens of thousands of more cases of diabetes over the last decade.

U.S. researchers from the University of California in San Francisco (UCSF) performed their study on sugar-sweetened beverages.

They state that such beverages do not include those that contain 100% fruit juice, only those where sugar has been added.

These sugar-sweetened drinks, according to their USSF report, consist of between 120 and 200 calories per drink container.

They presented the results of their study at the Joint Conference--50th Annual Cardiovascular Disease Epidemiology and Prevention-and-Nutrition, Physical Activity and Metabolism, in San Francisco, California, which was held from March 2 to March 5, 2010.

The California researchers used the Coronary Heart Disease (CHD) Policy Model, which is a computer simulation model of the U.S. national population that are of the age 35 years and older.

The researchers conclude the following:

'¢    'Increased consumption of sugar-sweetened drinks from 1990 to 2000 contributed to 130,000 new cases of diabetes, 14,000 cases of coronary heart disease and 50,000 'additional life-years burdened by coronary heart disease.'" [AHN: 'Researchers Say Sugar-Sweetened Sports Drinks Causing More Diabetes Cases']

Page two continues with two additional findings from the study.

The study also concluded that:

'¢    The sugary drinks are 'contributing to the rising incidence of obesity in the United States.' [AHN]

'¢    These sugary drinks add ''¦ an additional $300 to $550 million in costs to the nation's health care system.' [AHN]

Dr. Litsa K. Lambrakos is one of the lead authors of the study and an internal medicine resident at UCSF.

She stated, 'The CHD model allows us to incorporate data from other studies that demonstrate an association between daily consumption of sugared beverages and diabetes risk.' [The Times of India: 'Say no to sugary drinks']

Dr. Kirsten Bibbins-Domingo is another author of the study and a professor of medicine at UCSF.

She added, "We probably underestimated the incidence, because the rise is greatest among the young, and our model focuses on adults 35 and older.' [Business Week (3.5.2010): 'Increasing Soda Consumption Fuels Rise in Diabetes, Heart Disease']

Page three concludes with a comment on the idea of taxing sugar-sweetened beverages in the United States in an attempt to curb obesity and the increased incidences of medical problems such as diabetes.

Dr. Bibbins-Domingo also commented on whether taxing such sugary drinks would be helpful at reducing medical problems in the United States.

She stated, "If such a tax could curb the consumption of these drinks, the health benefits could be dramatic.' [The Times of India]

Dr. Bibbins-Domingo concluded with: "Whatever the mechanism, large population studies do suggest an effect of drinking large lots of sweetened beverages. No one argues that these drinks are not fine in moderation, but over the past decade their consumption has been on the rise, while consumption of other beverages has declined." [Business Week]

In New York City, major Michael Bloomberg is considering a tax of 12 cents per can on sugary beverages. According to the 3.8.2010 MailOnline article "The Coca-Cola tax? New York mayor proposes 12 cents-a-can levy on sugary soft drinks," "Michael Bloomberg says tax could raise $1billion of much-needed money for schools and health care."

The May 8, 2007 Diet-Blog.com article "The 7 Most Sugar Filled Drinks" lists the drinks with the most added sugar.

The article states, "Go do the math. Knocking back a 20oz bottle of Fanta is the same as chowing down on around 21.5 teaspoons of sugar."

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