Recently, there was a study on soda that trended big time. The research came from the big H — Harvard. While their report was new, the findings on how sugar impacts our risk of heart disease and cancers dates back 10, 15, and sometimes even 20 years ago.
Here’s the deal, though.
It’s not the consumption of soda (i.e., sugar, or fructose, or glucose) that causes cancer. It’s the amount that we’re drinking.
The more sugar you take in, even unknowingly, the more you crave it.
This study revealed that the more sugary drinks a person drinks, the greater their risk of dying from heart disease. Sweet beverages were also associated with higher risk of dying from breast cancer and colon cancer —as well as prostate cancer.
When people are juicing and they get the large size, guess how much sugar is in that vs a large soda from the drive-thru? About the same. In some cases, more. But you’re thinking,
“Yeah, but it’s healthy. All natural. It’s from fruit for goodness sake!.”
But your body doesn’t know that. Your body just knows sugar. And by consuming more sugar than what we need, it deregulates our insulin response. In other words, it disrupts our body’s ability to know what to do with insulin.
And then what happens? Weight gain. See, when your body produces insulin it creates a laundry list of problems as it doesn’t know how to regulate it. That becomes toxic.
Think about it. If you’ve got too much of anything in your body, it becomes toxic. You could die from water poisoning if you consume too much water. The average person won’t, but the average person is consuming sugar in their beverages and in their food at a level which has become dangerous, for sure.
We’ve known these things about sugary beverages and taking in too much sugar, in general, for quite some time. But I think what people have failed to take into consideration is that sugar is sugar. Your body doesn’t know whether it’s from honey or whether it’s from table sugar or fructose or high fructose corn syrup or glucose.
And in the study, they reported that for every additional sugary drink, that’s one single drink a person consumes, their risk of dying from heart disease increased by 10%.
I’m going to throw you a question…
How many sugary drinks should the average person have per day? [Insert jeopardy music here.]
But I know what you’re thinking…
“Chalene, my girl, diet soda is sugar free!”
Why, then, is diet soda having the same effect as sugary drinks? Good question.
In fact, women who drink more than four diet beverages per day died at a higher rate than any other group — particularly from heart disease.
Another study from this year notes that high consumption of artificially sweetened beverages had a clear association with increased risk of small artery occlusion, stroke, and a higher body mass index, coronary heart disease, and all-cause mortality.
Look, I’m going to recommend you check out my podcast from The Chalene Show, titled: Harvard University Study On Diet and Regular Soda.