Daily diet soda may be deadly – study

2012-02-20 07:52

Diet soda may benefit the waistline, but people who drink it every day may have a heightened risk of heart attack and stroke, according to a new US study.

Although the researchers, whose work appeared in the Journal of General Internal Medicine, found that older adults who drank diet soda every day were 44% more likely to suffer a heart attack, their research did not prove that the sugar free drinks alone were to blame.

There may be other things about diet soda lovers that explain the connection, said lead researcher Hannah Gardener of the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, and her team.

“What we saw was an association. These people may tend to have more unhealthy habits,” she said.

Gardener and her colleagues tried to account for that, noting that daily diet soda drinkers tended to be heavier and more often have heart risk factors such as high blood pressure, diabetes and unhealthy cholesterol levels.
Gardener and her team studied 2 564 New York City adults who were 69 years or older at the beginning of the study.

Over the next decade, 591 men and women had a heart attack, stroke or died of cardiovascular causes – including 31% of the 163 people who drank a diet soda daily at the beginning of the study.

Overall, daily consumption of diet soda was linked to a 44% higher chance of heart attack or stroke, compared with 22% for people who rarely or never drank diet soda but had a heart attack or stroke.

Gardener said that if diet soda itself contributes to health risks, it’s not clear how.

Some research in rats suggests that artificial sweeteners can end up boosting food intake and weight, but whether these results translate to humans is unknown.

“I don’t think people should change their behaviour based on this study,” Gardener said, noting that further study is needed to confirm a connection between diet soda and cardiovascular trouble.

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.