Sugary Beverages Linked to 180,000 Deaths Worldwide

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Mayor Michael Bloomberg might be right; maybe we should be drinking fewer sodas.

New research presented at the American Heart Association’s Epidemiology and Prevention/Nutrition, Physical Activity and Metabolism 2013 Scientific Sessions showed that 180,000 deaths worldwide are linked to sugary beverages.

Studies have connected sugared drinks likes sodas to higher risks of heart disease, diabetes and obesity. And recently, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg attempted to ban sugared drinks larger than 16 oz. in the city, but the proposal was invalidated by a judge the night before it was supposed to take effect. But while the connection between excess sugar and chronic disease is well-known, the latest research is the first to quantify deaths correlated with sugared drinks worldwide.

(MORE: Judge Blocks Ban of Big Sodas in New York City)

To reach their conclusion, the scientists analyzed data from the 2010 Global Burden of Diseases Study and recorded how much sugar-sweetened beverages people drank, dividing up the data by age and sex. Then, they figured out how the various amount corresponded to obesity rates. Lastly, they calculated how much obesity affected diabetes, heart disease and certain cancers and determined the mortality rates from these diseases, ending up with the number of deaths that could be attributed to consuming sugary beverages by age and sex.

In 2010 in the U.S., the researchers report that 25,000 deaths were linked to sugary beverages; these drinks were associated with 133,000 diabetes deaths, 44,000 heart disease deaths and 6,000 cancer deaths.

“Seventy-eight percent of these deaths due to over-consuming sugary drinks were in low and middle-income countries, rather than high-income countries,” the authors said in a statement.

(MOREShould Sugar Be Regulated like Alcohol and Tobacco?)

Here’s how the deaths were distributed globally:

  • The most diabetes deaths, 38,000, related to sugary beverages occurred in Latin America and the Caribbean
  • East and Central Eurasia recorded the most heart disease-related deaths at 11,000.
  • Mexico, which had the highest per-capita consumption of sugary drinks, also had the highest death rate due to sugared beverages at 318 deaths per million adults.
  • Japan, had the lowest per-capita consumption of sugary drinks, and also enjoyed the lowest death rate due to the drinks at 10 deaths per million adults.

“A large number of deaths each year are caused by drinking sugary beverages. Our findings should push policy makers world-wide to make effective policies to reduce consumption of sugary beverages, such as taxation, mass-media campaigns, and reducing availability of these drinks,” says Dr. Gitanjali Singh, co-author of the study and a postdoctoral research fellow at the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston. “Individuals should drink fewer sugary beverages and encourage their family and friends to do the same.”

The American Heart Association recommends that women limit their added sugar to no more than 100 calories per day, or about 6 teaspoons of sugar. For men, it’s 150 calories per day, or about 9 teaspoons. That’s slightly less than the amount found in a single 12 oz. can of sugared soda.

40 comments
Graywolf
Graywolf

To you guys with your schizophrenia about artificial sweeteners: Keep in mind it was hippies who loaded up the backpacks with granola and went trekkin in the amazon...discovered those amazon indians with bones in their noses...who hadn't been "corrupted" by civilization...who were chewing these strange sweet plants.

That's how stevia was discovered.

 (it's in low cal pepsi)

I'm not totally disagreeing with you about artificial sweets. Just sayin.  The hippies certified the amazons as all wise and knowledgeable n'stuff.

thewholetruth
thewholetruth

Billions of dollars are invested in the "fake foods" (Like Diet soda, which is a poison) which are the real cause of Diabetes and weight gain.


The Fake food makers are promoted by the FDA and they all get rich. Aspartame, Sucralose, High fructose corn syrups are the true causes of obesity and diabetes, don't believe the sugar lie. We are all insulin resistant and cannot lose weight with dieting. Food chemicals have made us insulin  resistant 

Reverse Insulin resistance and the weight comes off and the diabetes goes away

See here 
http://type2diabetesdietplan.blogspot.com/2013/02/can-diabetic-eat-sugar-why-it-is-only.htm
l



MichaelPrice
MichaelPrice

And Socialist governments are responsible for over 100 million deaths in the 20th century. Government = Death. Who cares about sugary drinks?

Johnnathan
Johnnathan

John Reynolds

Sugar has been called "White Death." Is there a moderate amount for daily consumption???

Now, we find out the the Beef & Pork growers in USA are adding a chemical to the feed to minimize fat and maximize muscle. 20 % of the chemical remains in the meat and causes cardio-vascular problems. Russia has banned the importation of USA meat.

Cross off beef and pig products from our shopping list.

Next, High Fructose Corn Syrup - now found in something like 7,000 foodstuffs in USA. It causes three killer diseases - heart trouble, diabetes, and cancer.

Cross all foods that contain this junk from our shopping list.

A question worth TRYING to get a get a truthful answer - what are the health problems connected to GM crops? Corn propaganda tried to get the name of HFCS changed so as to hide the truth.

Cross all corn products off our grocery shopping list.

We hear protests about "farmed fish." Are there health problems introduced by eating it?

Maybe we should cross that off our shopping list.

And, the people who have blinded themselves to trustworthiness and honesty by pasting $ bills over their eyes don't seem to care about how much damage they do to the lives of generations of children. Maybe they can find a way to make all foods unfit for both human and animal consumption.

How ironic! After they have killed everyone off by poisoning all our food there will be no one left to buy the poisoned foods. They will have eat them themselves. Or, maybe they will be afraid to eat them???

Where is the FDA in all of this?

larissa_j
larissa_j

Come on! This "study" and "research" is a joke. There was no actual research to speak of. The scientist didn't actually DO any experiments. There were no control groups. The drinks themselves were not the actual cause of the deaths or disease (causation). What the researcher did here was gather a bunch of statistics and manipulate them to make sugar, mainly the sugar in soft drinks, look bad. This is correlation and even the correlative link is suspicious. 

Are soft drinks bad for you? Yes, absolutely. Unfortunately when junk science like this is not only presented but published and promoted by the press it makes it that much harder to get people to do the right thing and eat healthy because this stuff tends to be debunked six months, a year or two years later and then people go back to ignoring nutritional guidelines.

Knock it off. 

Graywolf
Graywolf

I guess coffeecupmon drinks her coffee black.  But I do agree with her about the exercise part- by far the biggest culprit with american obesity rates IS SLOTH! not soda pop.

coffeecupmom2
coffeecupmom2

You have to read ALL of what these studies tout.. especially the FDA.  Insulin resistance is the culprit and there is white sugar in so many foods.. read, read, read the labels.

There are new studies out, not by the government, that show a change in our eating lifestyle can be of great benefit and that includes a small bit of regular exercise.  So many health benefits for just a small change...

Read more here: http://intermittentfastingandweightloss.com/category/benefits-intermittent-fasting/


thewholetruth
thewholetruth

Sugar is not the cause of the diabetes crisis or obesity. Billions of dollars are invested in the "fake foods" (Like Diet soda, which is a poison) which are the real cause of Diabetes and weight gain.


The Fake food makers are promoted by the FDA and they all get rich. Aspartame, Sucralose, High fructose corn syrups are the true causes of obesity and diabetes, don't believe the sugar lie. We are all insulin resistant and cannot lose weight with dieting. Food chemicals have made us insulin  resistant 

Reverse Insulin resistance and the weight comes off and the diabetes goes away

See here 
http://type2diabetesdietplan.blogspot.com/2013/02/can-diabetic-eat-sugar-why-it-is-only.html

Maureen_ABA
Maureen_ABA

If you read beyond the headlines, the authors of this research acknowledge that the cause of deaths examined in this study are chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease and cancer – not soda consumption. It’s a huge stretch of the data to then claim that soda consumption causes any deaths a year.

Graywolf
Graywolf

Does anyone recall the headline 10 years back about how childhood vaccines caused autism?  Does any remember that 2 years ago it was revealed to be a fraud?  It turned out that a law firm suing the vaccine manufacturer paid a "researcher" $750,000 for the "study".  The "scientist" essentially invented the data that the lawyers wanted to back the lawsuit.

The lawyer lobby and state attorney generals smell a boatload of cash here if they can just link classic american soda pop that people have been drinking for 100 years to everything from early death, dementia and beating up granny. Just like they did with american tobacco.

And you half wits swallow this "study" hook line and sinker with your schizophrenic complex- "help!! We're being menaced and threatened by soda pop" (or "big sugar"," fructose corn syrup").  You have too much time on your hands. Do something with your lives.

EdwardLarson
EdwardLarson

"To reach their conclusion, the scientists analyzed data from the 2010 Global Burden of Diseases Study and recorded how much sugar-sweetened beverages people drank, dividing up the data by age and sex. Then, they figured out how the various amount corresponded to obesity rates."

Read more: http://healthland.time.com/2013/03/20/sugary-beverages-linked-to-deaths-worldwide/#ixzz2O79ANwcb

This quote from the article seems to suggest that the researchers had a conclusion that they were trying to support.  This is what is known as "Junk Science".  I have not seen any study that suggests that sodas cause cancer, to suggest this without several supporting blind studies is irresponsible.  I suspect that these researchers are simply trying to gain a bit of shortterm fame as "the first to link sodas with deathrates."

danguss
danguss

Whether or not soda is good for us has no bearing on Bloomberg's correctness. We already know that sugary drinks are unhealthy. I don't think anyone is under any illusions about that. This study's claims aren't interesting enough to even warrant speculation on their validity.

Bloomberg is still dead wrong. There are a million and one things in this world that can be unhealthy when consumed excessively. It is not the government's job to step in and protect us from ourselves. His frivolous, time-wasting attempt at banning large sodas is neither appropriate nor practical. Anyone health-conscious enough to reconsider their soda intake when they have to buy a second soda isn't going to be fooled into drinking too much soda by a bigger cup. Anyone who would normally buy a huge soda and finish it will see only an annoyance in having to buy two cups of soda. And, let's not kid ourselves, anyone with a serious "soda problem" is stocking their house with it from the grocery store anyway.

MortonLeslie
MortonLeslie

People who pay less attention to their caloric intake tend to be more likely to be obese. Consumers of sugary drinks tend to pay less attention to calorie intake. Same with cookies, pie, cake, and beer.  So there are four more studies for air brained post docs to determine how many people die each year because, for example, they eat pie.

deka
deka

Do the right thing: buy Novo Nordisk stocks!!

HMG
HMG

You people don't have journalism degrees, we get it.

inveganatheist
inveganatheist

All science every tiny bit depends on "Statistical correlation and causality".   For instance though I am fairly sure I exist I have only "Statistical correlation and causality" as evidence that anybody else does.   Anybody looking for proofs needs to find another universe.   To assume a scientist is incompetent or that science is impossible because you don't like the research result is irrational and unscientific.

SmoothEdward1
SmoothEdward1

The practically hysterical reaction on this page to this news is most interesting. In statistics, key variables among the people studied are factored in to the calculations. This study may not be able to conclusively establish causality but there is a strong correlation that should get our attention. We use the same kind of study models on many other things and accept them. Why the opposition to this one? 

BradyThompson
BradyThompson

The Stork population in Germany is in decline. Childbirths are also in decline. Therefore we can conclude based upon “Harvard” logic that the reduction is Stork births is the cause in the reduction in child births. Looks like government education is taking it’s toll on Havard.

BrianWillis
BrianWillis

"sugary"? Um no its called High fructose corn syrup. it is what is in everything. it is not sugar it is poison. you can google a princeton study on it proving 100% IT causes the obesity and death. But Will anyone report on it? No. gotta protect the high fructose poison industry. Instead just say "sugary"  

RobertCollicott
RobertCollicott

Statistical correlation and causality are difficult under the most clinical of conditions but when human behavior is added to the equation it is impossible.The media loves a story like this because it appears scientific and alarmist vis-a-vis straight from the mouth of God. Need proof?Headline: “Sugary Beverages Linked to 180000 Deaths Worldwide” and “25000 US Deaths Linked to Sugary Drinks”.Mayor Bloomberg and his health crusaders need to go back to school and learn more about scientific method or quit trying to create behavioral law based on statistical misdirection.

JonathanRedding
JonathanRedding

Talk about a misleading article. Diabetes, Heart Disease and Cancer can also be hereditary.

BullsEyeAka-Kent
BullsEyeAka-Kent

BAN SUGAR NOW!  The President said it was worth banning Assault Rifles if it saved even 1 life.  Sugar Kills Hundreds of Thousands.  Stand up Mr. President Call for a BAN ON SUGAR NOW!

GeorgeBarbour
GeorgeBarbour

180,000 Die from Sugary Drinks.  15,000,000 Die from Starvation.  What's wrong here?  Have the people at Time run out of things to sensationalize.

sda0908
sda0908

This is such a pathetic study and for TIME to give it credibility in an article is equally pathetic. If you look closely I'm sure you can see the author is wearing a I Heart Bloomberg t shirt.

JarrodDowell
JarrodDowell

1 million Iraqi's have been killed in our endless, nonsensical war. Far more than these sugary drinks. I think we have bigger fish to fry than banning pop, Kool-aid, and Butterfingers.

KylaElizabethSentes
KylaElizabethSentes

This is a bit misleading since its highly unlikely that sugared soda was the only contributing factor to the increase in GBD related to obesity and/or diabetes. There's no discussion in the study of other factors (food and otherwise) that would also be ubiquitous to those regions consuming a higher number of beverages. While I absolutely agree that we should be looking at consumption of these beverages and their impact on public health, I find this type of 'snazzy' headline to be more harmful than helpful, because the moment someone stops to think critically about what's being said in the journal, the more you realize it's not sound reasoning from an epidemiological standpoint.

SamSpade
SamSpade

A man holding a coke was hit by a car and died.  The sugary drink was responsible.

SamSpade
SamSpade

Ahhhhh...  Do you see the next tax grab from the government coming?  Supported by the "facts" generated by those bastar*s in little white coats.  Pay no attention to the men on the government payroll.

jpup7
jpup7

Can I see that number as a percentage. Any one who doesn't get that needs to read "How to lie with statistics"

RicHornsby
RicHornsby

Guns don't kill people. Sugar does.

larissa_j
larissa_j

@thewholetruth  "Aspartame" <-- ask any migraine patient about this and the other "fake foods" you mentioned. MSG too. We are far more sensitive to these foods than the average consumer. I can't have any artificial sweeteners and I stopped drinking anything with caffeine about 5 years ago. People have gotten better about believing in food triggers but back in the '90s people used to think I was nuts when I wouldn't touch sugar free products.

ridgebriar
ridgebriar

@danguss Perfectly stated as to the real reason why this absurd law should never have seen the light of day.  Why focus on just one size on one type of item deemed unhealthy when there are thousands of others. Also, most people I know that order super sized drinks, only do so when they want to share it with someone else.  It would be far wiser to spend more time and effort of educating people as to how damaging unhealthy food can be rather than trying to regulate every type of food or beverage they ingest.  

All this law has done is make government look like it is micro managing people's lives in a ridiculous, frivolous way and further damaging their credibility  ... and taking attention away from hundreds of other issues far more relevant and worthwhile.

karenhanretty
karenhanretty

@SmoothEdward1 One reason to be skeptical is that the study hasn't been published or peer reviewed. Only the abstract was presented. So there's no way for anyone - including the media - to question or examine the methodology. Abstracts and press releases aren't good enough for the types of headlines in this Time article. It's sloppy journalism. Show us the study!

larissa_j
larissa_j

@RicHornsby Actually Sugar is only dangerous when it has an automatic butter attachment. Sugar by itself is practically harmless. I keep the sugar canister locked but accessible in case of a home invasion. 

RicHornsby
RicHornsby

@larissa_j @RicHornsby

Well see there's my problem. When you cook butter and sugar together you get caramel and I keep large amounts of caramel around. Looks like I may have enough caramel on hand to kill have half the state.

larissa_j
larissa_j

@RicHornsby @larissa_j If you're stockpiling caramel, you're obviously a food terrorist.  No doubt the government needs to come out and harass you on a daily basis and put you on some sort of watch list.