According to researchers from the Harvard School of Public Health, the study provides empirical evidence that intake of sugary beverages should be limited to reduce risk of these conditions.
To investigate, researchers conducted a meta-analysis that pooled 11 studies that examined the association between sugar-sweetened beverages, diabetes and metabolic syndrome.
The studies included more than 300,000 participants and 15,043 cases of type 2 diabetes, and 19,431 participants and 5,803 cases of metabolic syndrome.
The findings showed that drinking one to two sugary drinks per day increased the risk of type 2 diabetes by 26% and the risk of metabolic syndrome by 20% compared with those who consumed less than one sugary drink per month.
Drinking one 12-ounce serving per day increased the risk of type 2 diabetes by about 15%.
Previous studies have examined the relationship between sugar-sweetened beverages and risk of diabetes, and most have found positive associations but this study is one of the first to provide an overall picture of the magnitude of risk and the consistency of the evidence.
Researchers warn people should limit how much sugar-sweetened beverages they drink and replace them with healthy alternatives, such as water, to reduce risk of diabetes as well as obesity, gout, tooth decay, and cardiovascular disease
The study appears online in the journal Diabetes Care and will appear in the November print edition.
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