By Mary West
Guest Writer for Wake Up World
Those who depend on sweetened drinks, particularly diet sodas, for a daily pick-me-up may be getting a temporary boost at the expense of their emotional health. A new study finds that drinking these beverages is tied to a higher risk of depression, while drinking coffee is associated with a slightly reduced risk.
In the research to be presented at the American Academy of Neurology’s meeting in March of 2013, scientists found that regular consumption of several types of sweetened beverages may have a detrimental effect on mood. Researchers evaluated the consumption of soda, coffee, tea and fruit punch of more than 260,000 people between 1995 and 1996. Following a 10-year period, the participants were asked if they had been received a diagnosis of depression since the year 2000.
The findings showed that those who drank four cups of either diet or regular soda every day had a 30 percent higher likelihood of developing depression compared to those who drank none. Fruit punch drinkers had a 38 percent higher risk of depression than participants who completely abstained from sweetened beverages.
However, the results revealed an interesting difference between the effects of diet drinks and sugary drinks: the link to depression was stronger with the diet beverages. Participants who consumed diet soda had a 31 percent higher likelihood of depression than those who did not drink soda, while participants who drank regular soda had a 22 percent higher risk of depression than those who totally abstained from soda. Participants who drank diet fruit punch had a 51 percent higher likelihood of depression compared to those who did not drink fruit punch at all.
The only good news of the study was for coffee drinkers. Those who drank 4 cups of this beverage had a 10 percent lower risk of depression than participants who drank no coffee.
Although the results are preliminary, they support a small but expanding body of research indicating artificial sweeteners are linked to adverse health effects, says author Honglei Chen, MD, PhD. This study does not prove a cause-effect relationship between sweetened drinks and depression, but you are better off reducing your intake of these beverages, says Lisa Young, Ph.D, R.D., a nutrition expert at New York University.
About the author:
Mary West is a natural health enthusiast, as she believes this area can profoundly enhance wellness. She is the creator of a natural healing website where she focuses on solutions to health problems that work without side effects. You can visit her site and learn more at http://www.alternativemedicinetruth.com. Ms. West is also the author of Fight Cancer Through Powerful Natural Strategies.
This article was republished with permission from Live in the Now, one of the fastest growing natural health newsletters. Visit LiveInTheNow.com to browse their complete library of articles, or join the nearly 60,000 readers subscribed to their Newsletter.