I just read about the scariest study that now says that drinking sugary drinks on a daily basis can actually shorten your life. The horrifying thing about it is that I have always joked that a certain giant pop or gas station slushy or other syrup-based beverage was likely cutting a day off my life. Now, the joke isn’t funny anymore. It could be true.
Sugary Drinks Are More Dangerous Than Doctors Previously Thought
It’s not a surprise that sugary drinks aren’t good for us. I have been cutting back on them like crazy. They’re not gone from my diet, but they’re definitely not what they used to be. But I – like most people – had been under the impression that they increase my risk of weight gain or diabetes. So, as long as I keep things under control enough, and I don’t gain weight or find out that I’m on my way to type 2 diabetes, everything is fine, right? Apparently not!
The research was published in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. It was conducted by a team of public health researchers from the University of California San Diego and involved an analysis of data from 100,000 women. It clearly showed that regular sugary drinks are far more dangerous to our health than what we previously thought.
It’s Not Just Soda
This study went beyond pointing the finger just at soda. After all, we’re gulping down far more sugary drinks than that! The research found that women who consume them on a daily basis actually shortened their life expectancy! Yikes!
This wasn’t just a tiny study for a few weeks. It was a 20-year study that followed the data of the 100,000 women who had an average age of 53 years at the start (in 1995) and who shared their daily eating habits. The study ended in 2015, by which time, 14,143 of the original participants had diet.
The researchers in this recent sugary drinks study looked back across the 20 years of data. What they found was that there were trends among the people who were regular drinkers of sweetened beverages. Not just pop. They also looked at fruit drinks, sweetened teas, and sweetened bottled waters.
All it took was one sugared beverage per day to make a difference in a person’s life expectancy. One per day increased the risk of cancer-specific and all-cause mortality. Looking more specifically, it took about 1.5 cups or more of a beverage sweetened with sugar to increase all-cause mortality.
I’m Cutting Back on Sugary Drinks…Again
What have I learned from this research? I’m going to further cut back on my intake of sugary drinks. It’s only going to help me to reach my weight loss challenge goals anyway. When all is said and done, I really don’t feel that swapping out a glass of juice for a glass of water is all that much of a hardship. If that’s the worst thing to happen to me in a day, my day has been pretty great!