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New Study Suggest Diet Sodas May Raise Diabetes Risk

Whitney | March 1st, 2013

diabetic dietA new European study suggests that regular consumption of diet soda may be linked to a higher risk of type II diabetes. These sugar-free beverages, which have traditionally been recommended as an alternative for patients on a diabetic diet, actually seemed to carry a higher risk for the condition than their sugar-laden counterparts. Sugary sodas have long been associated with a heightened risk for developing type II diabetes, but this new study seems to refute the assumption that “light” or sugar-free sodas were a healthier option for preventing or reversing diabetes.

Details of diabetic diet study

The study, which was conducted by a research team from France’s National Institute of Health and Medical Research, followed more than 66,000 European women over a period of 14 years. Researchers tracked the women’s sugar consumption from sodas and juices during that time. Their findings were recently published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

Women participating in the study were asked to record their beverage habits through questionnaires that asked specifically about consumption of juice, sodas with sugar and sodas with artificial sweeteners. By the end of the 14-year study, 1,369 women had been diagnosed with type II diabetes. Women who received the diagnosis had consumed high amounts of soda with both sugar and artificial sweeteners.

Diet sodas associated with higher diabetes risk

Researchers were surprised to note that the highest risk appeared to be attributed to the group of women that regularly consumed sodas with artificial sweeteners. The only women who appeared to avoid the higher risk were those that drank 100% fruit juice in lieu of sodas.

Researchers are quick to point out that this study merely points to an association between diet soda consumption and a higher incidence of type II diabetes. Scientists are unsure exactly what that association is at this point. While the sugar-free sodas could directly increase diabetes risk, other factors like obesity and lifestyle could also play a role. It is also possible that individuals already at a higher risk for diabetes could be choosing diet sodas in an effort to lose weight or prevent further risk with a diabetes diet for weight loss.

Physician developed diabetes diet for weight loss

No matter what the link between diet soda and diabetes may be, there are better choices for a diabetic diet to prevent the condition or effectively manage it once it is diagnosed. A physician-guided weight loss plan that incorporates multiple factors into a single program usually offers the best results. The Center for Medical Weight Loss provides customized programs that combine a low-calorie diet, exercise and personal counseling to help patients reach their weight loss goals and manage type II diabetes.

Dr. Michael Kaplan, founder and Chief Medical Officer for the Center, has effectively treated hundreds of diabetes patients across the country, in some cases reversing their condition through a healthy weight loss program. Studies published in major medical journals show that nearly every client on the Center’s program loses 11.1 percent of their body weight in just 12 weeks. Most keep the weight off after the first year.

There are many Centers across the country to help patients achieve their weight loss goals. Enter your information in the boxes at the right to find a Center for Medical Weight Loss near you. Special introductory offers are available for first-time visitors in most locations.