A new research found that soft drinks that are heavily sweetened with sugar or high-fructose can pose some serious threat to heart health.
Beverage with large amounts of sugar, such as fruit drinks, energy drinks and teas tend to affect the body’s immune system, exposing it to greater risks of heart attack, stroke and heart disease.
A team of researchers concluded that consuming more than two servings of sugar-sweetened drinks a day is linked with a 35% greater risk of heart attack and heart disease, a 15% greater risk of stroke events, and to top the cake, a 25% greater risk of developing type 2 diabetes. The study was led by Vasanti Malik, nutrition expert at Harvards T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston.
Malik declared that reducing sugar-sweetened drink consumption may help heart disease and type 2 diabetes epidemic to decline. Even if it is not going to put an end to these diseases once and for all, it is a very important step towards a positive impact.
The study was published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, a journal that lately has put emphasis on the risks of sugar excess. A spokesman from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics said that health researchers have long focused on the negative aspects of fat and cholesterol levels, but have greatly ignored the dangers of sugar. He said that more dietary guidelines should stress the importance of avoiding sugars, because it is much more dangerous for the organism than cholesterol and fat levels are.
Vasanti Malik noted that of the total added sugars in the American people’s diet, more than half of it comes from sugar-sweetened beverages. Not surprising, considering that a can of soda usually contains about 30-35 grams of sugar. If you think about it, that amounts is almost the same as 10 teaspoons worth of sugar.
Beverage producers usually use table sugar to sweeten their drinks, but they also use an alternative, called high-fructose. Whenever you see a soda that boasts it is sugar-free, beware, there is always the chance that it was sweetened with high-fructose. This substance is made from corn syrup, and is almost just as unhealthy for the heart as sugar. Fructose can also cause fatty liver disease.
Glucose is also used as a sweetener. Malik warns that the substance is known to increase insulin levels to rise, leading to the development of type 2 diabetes. Glucose is also famous for accumulating fat in the belly, another factor that increases the risk of diabetes.
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