News Release 

Soft drinks associated with risk of death in population-based study in 10 European countries

JAMA Internal Medicine

Bottom Line: Greater consumption of soft drinks, including both sugar- and artificially sweetened, was associated with increased risk of overall death in a population-based study of nearly 452,000 men and women from 10 European countries. Drinking two or more glasses per day (compared with less than one glass per month) of total soft drinks, sugar-sweetened soft drinks and artificially sweetened soft drinks was associated with higher risk of death from all causes during an average follow-up of 16 years in which 41,693 deaths occurred. The study group included participants from Denmark. France, Germany, Greece, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Spain, Sweden and the United Kingdom. Soft drink consumption was collected on food questionnaires or in interviews at baseline from 1992 to 2000. Also among the findings was a higher risk of death from circulatory diseases associated with consuming two or more glass per day of total and artificially sweetened soft drinks, and a higher risk of death from digestive diseases associated with drinking one or more glass per day of total and sugar-sweetened soft drinks. No association was observed between soft drink consumption and overall cancer death. Limitations of the study include its observational design, which makes causal inferences impossible, and there was only a single assessment of soft drink consumption. Study authors suggest the findings support public health initiatives to limit soft drink consumption.

Authors: Neil Murphy, Ph.D., of the International Agency for Research on Cancer, Lyon, France, and coauthors

(doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2019.2478)

Editor's Note: The article includes conflict of interest and funding/support disclosures. Please see the article for additional information, including other authors, author contributions and affiliations, financial disclosures, funding and support, etc.

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Media advisory: To contact corresponding author Neil Murphy, Ph.D., email murphyn@iarc.fr. The full study is linked to this news release.

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