Diet drinks cause depression? Not so fast
A recent study from the National Institutes of Health found that depression was more common among frequent consumers of artificially sweetened beverages, leading the authors of the study to conclude that reducing the number of these beverages consumed could help lower depression risk. But instead of embracing these conclusions, researchers have been quick to identify problems with the study, questioning its validity.
The original study looked at 250,000 people and found that people who drank four cups of coffee a day were 10 percent less likely to be diagnosed with depression, and that those who drank four cans of diet soda or artificially flavored juice increased their risk of depression by one-third. The study did not investigate the cause for the link.
One major concern with the methods of the study: the study population was all over the age of 50. Sweeteners have also gone through extensive testing from numerous agencies around the world and have been found to be safe. As one critic said, the original study indicates a possible link, but not cause-and-effect.