2 Diet Sodas A Day: Enough To Kill You

Image: Richard Masoner / Cyclelici, CC BY-SA 2.0

More ‘bad news’ for diet soda lovers

| CNN – Drinking two or more of any kind of artificially sweetened drinks a day is linked to an increased risk of clot-based strokes, heart attacks and early death in women over 50.

So says a new study by the American Heart Association and American Stroke Association.

The risks were highest for women with no history of heart disease or diabetes and women who were obese or African-American.

[Our take: one may complain that rose bushes have thorns, or rejoice that thorn bushes have roses. We believe that this study is very good news – it suggests that millions of Americans can improve their heart health and increase their lifespans simply by giving up a product they do not need, that is completely devoid of nutritional value, and that did not even exist 50 or 60 years ago.) 

Previous research has shown a link between diet beverages and stroke, dementia, Type 2 diabetes, obesity and metabolic syndrome, which can lead to heart disease and diabetes.

“This is another confirmatory study showing a relationship between artificially sweetened beverages and vascular risks. While we cannot show causation, this is a yellow flag to pay attention to these findings,” said American Academy of Neurology President Dr. Ralph Sacco, who was not involved in the latest study.

“What is it about these diet drinks?” asked lead study author Yasmin Mossavar-Rahmani, an associate professor at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York. “Is it something about the sweeteners? Are they doing something to our gut health and metabolism?”

Weight and race increased risk

More than 80,000 postmenopausal US women participating in the Women’s Health Initiative, a long-term national study, were asked how often they drank one 12-fluid-ounce serving of diet beverage over the previous three months. Their health outcomes were tracked for an average of 12 years.

“Previous studies have focused on the bigger picture of cardiovascular disease,” she said. “Our study focused on the most common type of stroke, ischemic stroke and its subtypes, one of which was small-vessel blockage.”

After controlling for lifestyle factors, the study found that women who consumed two or more artificially sweetened beverages each day were 31% more likely to have a clot-based stroke … Read more. 

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