Sugary drinks boost heart disease risk
For the first time, a scientific study has found a direct correlation between the amount of sugary drinks a person consumes and their risk of developing heart disease. In short, according to research at the the University of California-Davis, the more you drink, the greater the risk.
Researchers studied 85 participants, ages 18 to 40, dividing them into four groups. Each group received different levels of high fructose corn syrup--0 percent, 10 percent, 17.5 percent or 25 percent of their daily calorie requirement. The zero percent group was given sugar-free sweetener containing aspartame. Throughout the study, researchers took hourly blood samples from the participants to monitor changes in lipoproteins, triglycerides and uric acid – all of which are known indicators of heart disease risk.
Their findings, which will be published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, revealed that as the dose of high-fructose corn syrup increased, so did their health risk factors. Even the group that received only a 10 percent dose showed increased levels of lipoprotein cholesterol and triglycerides, compared with their levels before the study. These changes were apparent after only two weeks of high fructose corn syrup consumption.
Additionally, the researchers found that the increased lipoprotein risk factors for heart disease were greater in men than in women, and were not related to body weight gain.
The researchers said they hope their findings will prompt more research on determining healthy levels of sugar consumption.