April 22, 2024

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Sugary Drink Consumption Linked to 85% Increase in Liver Cancer Risk

Sugary Drink Consumption Linked to 85% Increase in Liver Cancer Risk



Sugary Drink Consumption Linked to 85% Increase in Liver Cancer Risk

In recent years, global consumption of sugary drinks has been increasing. There is evidence that high consumption of sugary drinks can lead to obesity and related diseases, type 2 diabetes, and cardiovascular diseases. It is estimated that globally, 184,000 deaths per year can be attributed to sugary drinks, making sugary drink consumption one of the largest behavioral risk factors for death worldwide.

Recently, researchers from the University of South Carolina, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, and Harvard Medical School published a study titled “Sugar-Sweetened and Artificially Sweetened Beverages and Risk of Liver Cancer and Chronic Liver Disease Mortality” in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA).

The study showed that compared to those who never drank sugary drinks or drank less than 3 cups per month (about 355mL per cup), women who drank 1 cup or more of sugary drinks per day had an 85% higher risk of liver cancer and a 68% higher risk of death from chronic liver disease.

Sugary Drink Consumption Linked to 85% Increase in Liver Cancer Risk

In this study, researchers analyzed 98,786 postmenopausal women aged 50-79 from the Women’s Health Initiative (WHI) study, collecting participants’ sugary drink intake through questionnaires. Based on intake, they were divided into 3 groups: never drank or drank less than 3 cups per month, 1-6 cups per week, and 1 cup or more per day. The relationship between sugary drink intake and the incidence of liver cancer and the mortality rate from chronic liver disease was analyzed.

In total, 77,173 people never drank or drank less than 3 cups of sugary drinks per month, 14,921 people drank 1-6 cups per week, and 6,692 people drank 1 cup or more per day.

During an average follow-up period of 21 years, 207 new cases of liver cancer and 148 deaths from chronic liver disease were confirmed.

The study found that for the incidence of liver cancer, among those who never drank or drank less than 3 cups of sugary drinks per month, the incidence rate was 10.3 per 100,000 person-years, while for women who drank 1 cup or more per day, the incidence rate was 18 per 100,000 person-years. Compared to those who never drank or drank less than 3 cups of sugary drinks per month, women who drank 1 cup or more of sugary drinks per day had an 85% higher risk of liver cancer.

For the mortality rate from chronic liver disease, among those who never drank or drank less than 3 cups of sugary drinks per month, the rate was 7.1 per 100,000 person-years, while for women who drank 1 cup or more per day, the rate was 17.7 per 100,000 person-years. Compared to those who never drank or drank less than 3 cups of sugary drinks per month, women who drank 1 cup or more of sugary drinks per day had a 68% higher risk of death from chronic liver disease.

In addition, the study also found that there was no significant correlation between artificial sweetener beverage intake and the incidence of liver cancer or the mortality rate from chronic liver disease.

According to the researchers, this is the first report of a positive correlation between sugary drink intake and the mortality rate from chronic liver disease.

As this is an observational study, it cannot conclusively prove causality or indicate the biological pathways through which sugary drink intake may be related to adverse liver outcomes.

The researchers speculated that:

First, sugary drinks are associated with obesity, which is a risk factor for liver disease.

Second, consuming large amounts of sugary drinks may lead to rapid and sharp increases in blood sugar, which is also a risk factor for liver cancer and liver disease.

Third, sugary drinks are associated with fat accumulation in the liver. Other factors, such as changes in gut microbiota due to sugary drink consumption, and sugary drink-related metabolites may also be related to liver cancer.

In conclusion, this study of nearly 100,000 people suggests that consuming one cup of sugary drink per day significantly increases the risk of liver cancer and chronic liver disease in women.

[Paper link: doi:10.1001/jama.2023.12618]

Sugary Drink Consumption Linked to 85% Increase in Liver Cancer Risk

(source:internet, reference only)


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