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February 10, 2010

Study: Soft Drink Consumption May Markedly Increase Risk of Pancreatic Cancer

Topics: Health Issues

soft_drinks.jpgA new study conducted at the School of Public Health at the University of Minnesota has found that consuming two or more soft drinks per week increased the risk of developing pancreatic cancer by nearly twofold compared to individuals who did not consume soft drinks:

[...] Although relatively rare, pancreatic cancer remains one of the most deadly, and only 5 percent of people who are diagnosed are alive five years later.

Mark Pereira, Ph.D., senior author on the study and associate professor in the School of Public Health at the University of Minnesota, said people who consume soft drinks on a regular basis, defined as primarily carbonated sugar-sweetened beverages, tend to have a poor behavioral profile overall.

However, the effect of these drinks on pancreatic cancer may be unique.

"The high levels of sugar in soft drinks may be increasing the level of insulin in the body, which we think contributes to pancreatic cancer cell growth," said Pereira.

For the current study, Pereira and colleagues followed 60,524 men and women in the Singapore Chinese Health Study for 14 years. During that time, there were 140 pancreatic cancer cases. Those who consumed two or more soft drinks per week (averaging five per week) had an 87 percent increased risk compared with individuals who did not.

No association was seen between fruit juice consumption and pancreatic cancer.
Pereira said that these results from Singapore are likely applicable to the United States.

More here ...

The results of this study supports the results of a prospective, population-based cohort study of Swedish men and women reported in the November 2006 issue of the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

Given the very poor prognosis of pancreatic cancer (the survival rate is the worst of any cancer - less than 5% diagnosed will live 5 years), one would do well to severely restrict their intake of high sugar drinks of all kinds, both carbonated and un-carbonated.

And let's not forget that pancreatic cancer is not the only problem associated with high consumption of refined sugar and high-fructose corn syrup; it can cause the onset of type 2 diabetes.

Posted by Richard at February 10, 2010 9:04 AM

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