HealthDay News — Greater consumption of soft drinks, both sugar-sweetened and artificially sweetened, is associated with a higher risk for all-cause mortality, according to a European study published in JAMA Internal Medicine.

Amy Mullee, PhD, from University College Dublin, and colleagues used data from the multinational European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition study to examine the association between total, sugar-sweetened, and artificially sweetened soft drink consumption and subsequent total and cause-specific mortality. The analysis included 451,743 participants (mean age, 50.8 years) recruited between 1992 and 2000.

The researchers found that during a mean follow-up of 16.4 years, 41,693 deaths occurred. There was an association between higher all-cause mortality and drinking at least two glasses per day of total soft drinks (hazard ratio, 1.17), sugar-sweetened soft drinks (hazard ratio, 1.08), and artificially sweetened soft drinks (hazard ratio, 1.26) compared with drinking less than one glass per month. The investigators found additional positive associations between artificially sweetened soft drinks and deaths from circulatory diseases (at least two glasses per day versus less than one glass per month: hazard ratio, 1.52) and between sugar-sweetened soft drinks and deaths from digestive diseases (at least one glass per day versus less than one glass per month: hazard ratio, 1.59).

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“Results of this study appear to support ongoing public health measures to reduce the consumption of soft drinks,” the authors write.

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