Diabetes is incredibly prevalent in the United States today. Approximately 9.3% of the U.S. population has diabetes. This is 29.1 million Americans with diabetes, of which, 8.1 million are undiagnosed. 25.9% of U.S. seniors have diabetes. This is 11.8 million U.S. seniors.
To make these numbers even scarier, in 2010, diabetes was the 7th leading cause of death in America, and the number of new cases diagnosed each year is staggering. For example, 1.7 million new cases were diagnosed in 2012, and 1.9 million new cases were diagnosed in 2010.
Diabetes causes a host of other health issues and can be a trigger for or cause stroke, kidney disease, blindness, heart attacks, and the necessity for non-traumatic (meaning, not caused by injury such as an automobile accident) lower limb amputations.
Yet, growing research indicates that diabetes is at least impacted by diet and may be caused by diet. For example, a recent British study wanted to see if ingestion of sugary drinks such as sodas and fruit juice had an impact on the likelihood of a person developing type 2 diabetes. The authors of the study found:
“Higher consumption of sugar sweetened beverages [one 250 ml serving per day or higher] was associated with a greater incidence of type 2 diabetes, by 18 percent per one serving/day and 13 percent before and after adjustment for adiposity[i.e. body fat]…
[F]or artificially sweetened beverages, 25 percent and 8 percent… and for fruit juice, 5 percent and 7 percent.”
Dr. Mercola goes on to note that
“The researchers estimate that over a period of 10 years, cutting consumption of sugary beverages could reduce the number of new cases of diabetes by nearly two million in the US, and by 80,000 in the UK.”
Now, if you’ll think about this quote while remembering the statistics at the beginning of this article, you may come to the conclusion that eliminating sugary beverages, such as sodas, from a person’s diet may eliminate the risk of developing type 2 diabetes at all.
Please note that “diet” drinks using artificial sweeteners are not a substitute for regular sugary sodas as diet sodas are also linked to obesity and diabetic issues.
For your health, the evidence seems clear that the best position is to simply avoid all sodas and sugary drinks.