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Thursday 27th October 2016

Fizzy drinks linked to cancer

9th February 2010

People who drink two or more fizzy drinks a week have a significantly increased risk of developing pancreatic cancer.


The risk is more than twice that of people who do not drink them at all, according to a new study.

Lead author Noel Mueller said he believed the adverse effects of fizzy drinks might be due to some property of the hormone insulin.

For the purposes of the study, researchers quizzed more than 60,000 Singaporeans, all of whom were of Chinese descent, and followed them for 14 years.

At the end of the study, when the researchers looked for cancer developments among their subjects, the people who drank two or more sodas per week were 87% more likely to develop pancreatic tumours.

While the present study did not find anything that linked drinking sweetened fruit juice to cancer risk, previous studies have shown that a link exists.

The study authors said that this discrepancy may be due to the fact that sweetened fruit juice does not affect insulin as much as fizzy drinks do.

Because type 2 diabetes has also been linked to pancreatic cancer, a rapid insulin increase may cause pancreatic cells to divide in ways that are abnormal, and lead to tumours.

Mueller said that the fast food culture of Singaporean adults made them good study subjects for people in Europe and the US.

Eric Jacobs, strategic director of pharmacoepidemiology at the American Cancer Society, said that drinking sugar-sweetened soft drinks had been linked to obesity and diabetes, both of which were associated with higher pancreatic cancer risk.

He said that limiting consumption of sugar-sweetened soft drinks could help people maintain a healthy weight.


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