One can of sugary soda a day raises the risk of heart disease death

Drinking just one can of sugary drink a day ‘raises your risk of dying from heart disease by up to 31%’

  • And it increases the risk of premature death from any cause by more than a fifth 
  • Swapping a daily sugary soda for a diet drink lowers the risk of premature death
  • But the risk rises again if you have more than four diet cans of pop a day 
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Drinking just one sugary drink a day raises your risk of dying from heart disease and even cancer, research suggests.

A Harvard study found getting through just one-to-two cans cans of soda, juice or energy drinks a day boosts the odds of dying from heart disease by 31 per cent.

And it increases the risk of premature death from any cause – including cancer – by more than a fifth. 

Swapping a daily sugary soda for a diet drink lowers the risk of premature death, the scientists also found.

However, the risk rises again if you consume more than four cans of diet pop a day.

Sugary sodas raise a persons risk of dying from heart disease and even cancer (stock)

The research was carried out by the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and led by Vasanti Malik, a research scientist in the department of nutrition.

‘Our results provide further support to limit intake of SSBs [sugar-sweetened beverages] and to replace them with other beverages, preferably water, to improve overall health and longevity,’ Mr Malik said. 

To determine how fizzy drinks affect our risk of death, the researchers analysed 80,647 women from the Nurses’ Health Study of 1980-to-2014 and 37,716 men from the Health Professionals Follow-up Study of 1986-to-2014. 

All the participants were asked about their health and lifestyle habits every two years.

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Results – published in the journal Circulation – revealed that compared with the participants who drank SSBs less than once a month, those who got through two or more a day were 31 per cent more likely to die of heart disease.

And each additional can of pop or other sugary drink was associated with a ten per cent greater risk of the disease. 

Heart disease aside, drinking two or more can of SSBs raised the participants’ risk of dying early from any cause by 21 per cent, compared to those who drank sugary sodas less than once a month.

And getting through one or two sugary drinks a day raised the risk by 14 per cent, two or six a week by six per cent, and one-to-four a month by one per cent. 

There was a ‘modest risk’ between SSB consumption and early death from cancer, the researchers claimed. 

‘These findings are consistent with the known adverse effects of high sugar intake on metabolic risk factors,’ Dr Walter Willett, professor of epidemiology and nutrition at Harvard, said.

‘And the strong evidence that drinking sugar-sweetened beverages increases the risk of type 2 diabetes, itself a major risk factor for premature death. 

‘The results also provide further support for policies to limit marketing of sugary beverages to children and adolescents and for implementing soda taxes because the current price of sugary beverages does not include the high costs of treating the consequences.’

Studies have shown that SSBs are the single largest source of added sugar in the American diet.

Sodas are often to blame when a person exceeds the US recommendation of no more than 10 per cent of their daily calories coming from sugar. 


Odell Beckham Jr, wide receiver for the New York Giants, said he doesn’t like water.  

Water accounts for about 60 percent of the human body, including 90 percent of our blood. 

That’s why it is essential for almost every bodily function to work effectively and smoothly.

There is no consensus on how much water a day you should drink, but it is generally agreed that eight glasses of water a day is sensible. 


1. For clear eyes and full hearts

Water lubricates the eyes to keep them moist and help vision. It also pumps oxygen through the body, which is key for heart health.

2. To stay limber

Cartilage is 80 percent water. Those who swap out water for soda have a higher risk of joint pain and injuries. 

3. For clarity of thought

The brain is used to a certain amount of water, and when it’s dehydrated we get dizzy, slow of thought, with slower reactions.  

4. To digest food

Water is like gasoline for our bowels. Without it, stool doesn’t break down properly, the stomach can fill with acid, increasing the risks of stomach ulcers, colon cancer, heartburn, constipation, and metabolism disorders.

5. Keeping blood pressure in check

When the blood lacks water, it thickens, increasing blood pressure.  


1. Tooth decay

Water is essential for flushing bacteria out of your mouth. Soda does a great job at loading up teeth with plaque. 

2. Dehydration

Most soda has caffeine in it, which is a diuretic and dehydrating. 

Because it’s a diuretic, it means you need the toilet more than if you were drinking water, which also increases dehydration.

3. Poorer athletic performance 

A recent study showed dehydration and fluid loss worsens performance in any physical activity that lasts longer than 30 minutes. 

4. Weight gain

Even low-calorie sodas are no match for water when it comes to calories. Two Cokes, for example, will add 300 calories to your daily total. Even Diet Coke, with zero calories, affects your weight because the replacement sweetener, aspartame, has been shown to derail metabolism. 

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