Friday, February 11, 2011

The End of Pop?

Not only can diet pop increase one's risk of heart attack and stroke, but soda generally has no nutritional value according to a doctor in epidemiology who studies health patterns.

A new study, presented this week at an international stroke conference in Los Angeles, found a link between diet drinks and cardiovascular disease. The same association was not seen in people who consumed regular soda.

The findings are based on 2,564 New York adults with an average age of 69. At the outset of the study, the volunteers were asked to complete a questionnaire about their eating habits, including their pop consumption.

The researchers then monitored the health of the participants for about nine years.

The results revealed that people who drank at least one diet pop a day had a 48 per cent higher risk of having a heart attack, stoke or fatal cardiac event than those who reported no soda consumption.

"Until more research is done, the doctor said, it’s too soon to urge people to shun diet soda. “In the meantime, if consumers want to be conservative, it’s important to keep in mind that there is no nutritional value in diet or regular sodas. And certainly the health consequences of regular soda – sugar-sweetened beverages – have been well documented. So cutting either out of your diet is not going to leave you with nutritional or vitamin holes,” she added. Perhaps variety is the answer; people do have lots of choice when it comes to beverages. Of course, nothing beats just plain water."

And then there's always delightful green tea....