Study links consumption of sugary drinks to cancer onset: report | TheHill – The Hill

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Consuming sugar-sweetened drinks and fruit juices may have a link to the development of cancer, according to a new study. 

The New York Times reports the observational study, published in BMJ Wednesday, did not claim sugary drinks cause cancer, but French researchers found an association. 

The study reviewed 24-hour dietary records of 101,257 participants aged 18 and over, identifying 97 sugary drink items and 12 artificially sweetened beverages.

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It found the consumption of sugary drinks, including 100 percent fruit juices, were significantly associated with the risk of overall cancer and breast cancer. 

Researchers found no association of cancer with the consumption of artificially sweetened drinks, the Times reports. 

The study found the highest quarter for sugary drink consumption had a 30 percent higher risk for cancer, and a 37 percent higher risk for breast cancer, when compared with the lowest quarter for sugary drink consumption, the Times reports. 

Researchers of the study said the results need to be replicated in other large-scale prospective studies, but the findings suggest “that sugary drinks, which are widely consumed in Western countries, might represent a modifiable risk factor for cancer prevention.”

The Times reports researchers do not know what the possible mechanism is that could be linking the consumption with cancer, but suggested sugary drinks might promote visceral fat deposits, which could promote tumor formation if the fat deposits around internal organs. 

“We cannot make a causal inference,” the senior author, Mathilde Touvier, a research director at Inserm, the French public health research center, told the Times. “But we took into account many demographic and lifestyle factors, and the association was still significant.”

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