The Risks of Drinking Soft Drinks

The Risks of Drinking Soft Drinks

The soft drink industry is worth over 400 billion dollars globally. According to Stats Canada, soft drink consumption per capita was forecasted to be approximately 68 litres in 2018.


Although, consumption has dropped drastically from the average of 104 litres in 2005, perhaps partly due to consumers being more well informed of the negative effects of sugary drinks.


However, the most at risk population, aged 9 to 18, still drink approximately 578 mL of sugary drinks a day (which equates to roughly 64 grams of sugar).


One may think; drinking only a can of soda or sugar rich fruit juice, what can the harm be in that?


Well, according to a recent study published on February 2019, the risks are very significant to your health.


The Nutri-Sante cohort study was a large participant based study with 101 257 participants lasting between 2009-2017 where their consumption of sugar containing drinks and artificially sweetened drinks were assessed using 24 hour dietary records.


The Results


A 100ml increase in consumption of sugar-containing drinks was associated with an 8% significant increase in overall cancer risk, as well as a 11% significant increase in breast cancer risk.



It’s important to note that 100% fruit juices were also associated with an 8% increased risk of overall cancers. These statistics were adjusted for known risk factors by the multivariable Cox Propotional Hazard model.




The association between cancer and sugar containing soda drinks and fruit juices are frightening. One average can of soda contains 355ml, and it is all too easy to drink multiple cans throughout the day, or upsize your favourite soda at a fast food restaurant.


Parents who think fruit juices are a good way of hydrating children instead of soda, should think of alternatives.


This study only looked at the cancer association, however cardiovascular risks are also well associated to sugary drink consumption.


Great alternatives for pop and fruit juices:

-cucumber infused water

-lemon water

-carbonated mineral water

-natural fruit infused water


-natural coconut water (not sweetened)


Reference: Chazelas E, Srour B, Desmetz E, Kesse-Guyot E, Julia C, Druesne-Pecollo N, Galan P, Zelek L, Hercberg S, Latino-Martel P, Deschasaux M, Touvier M. Consumption of sugar-containing beverages and cancer risk: Results from the NutriNet-Santé prospective cohort [abstract]. In: Proceedings of the 2018 San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium; 2018 Dec 4-8; San Antonio, TX. Philadelphia (PA): AACR; Cancer Res 2019;79(4 Suppl):Abstract nr P6-10-01.


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