While it’s difficult to resist sugary drinks, over-indulging in those might put your health at risk. According to the findings of a latest study, consuming sugar-sweetened drinks daily may be associated with an increased risk of liver cancer and chronic liver disease, especially in older women, CNN reported.
The report, published on Tuesday in the medical journal JAMA, tracked the beverage choices of nearly 100,000 women between the ages of 50 and 79 across the United States and looked at their health outcomes over two decades.
The researchers found that women who drank at least one sugar-sweetened beverage a day were 1.75 times as likely to be diagnosed with liver cancer compared with those who consumed three or fewer sugar-sweetened beverages per month. Daily drinkers were nearly 2.5 times as likely to die from chronic liver disease, as well.
Over two decades, 207 women had developed liver cancer and 148 died from chronic liver disease.
However, the women who drank the artificially sweetened beverages did not have a much higher risk of developing liver problems, as per the study.
“To our knowledge, this is the first study to report an association between sugar-sweetened beverage intake and chronic liver disease mortality,” said Longgang Zhao, the first author of the study published in the Journal of American Medical Association (JAMA) Network Open.
“Our findings, if confirmed, may pave the way to a public health strategy to reduce risk of liver disease based on data from a large and geographically diverse cohort,” Mr Zhao added.
More studies were needed to validate this risk association and determine why sugary drinks appeared to increase the risk of liver cancer and disease, they said.
“We know from a body of evidence that it is worth thinking twice before choosing to drink sugar-sweetened beverages every day,” Dr. Pauline Emmett, senior research fellow at the University of Bristol, told the Science Media Center in the UK, as reported by New York Post.
Over 56,000 people die from chronic liver disease each year in the United States, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, making it the nation’s ninth leading cause of death. About 11,000 women get liver cancer in the United States, and 9,000 die from it each year.
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