Just two cans of soda a week is enough to undo the benefits of any exercise on cardiovascular disease, warns a new study. PHOTO BY ERIK MCLEAN/UNSPLASH 
Just two cans of soda a week is enough to undo the benefits of any exercise on cardiovascular disease, warns a new study. PHOTO BY ERIK MCLEAN/UNSPLASH 

Just two cans of soda a week is enough to undo the benefits of any exercise on cardiovascular disease, warns a new study. PHOTO BY ERIK MCLEAN/UNSPLASH 



By Isobel Williams

Just two cans of soda a week is enough to undo the benefits of any exercise on cardiovascular disease, warns a new study.

Researchers found that the benefits of physical activity do not outweigh the risks of cardiovascular disease, the world’s biggest killer, caused by sugar-sweetened drinks.

The Canadian team studied two cohorts totaling around 100,000 adults, followed for about 30 years.

They found that those who consumed sugar-sweetened beverages more than twice a week had a higher risk of cardiovascular disease, regardless of physical activity levels.

Researchers found that the benefits of physical activity do not outweigh the risks of cardiovascular disease, the world’s biggest killer, caused by sugar-sweetened drinks. PHOTO BY VICTOR RUTKA/UNSPLASH 

The study, published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, shows that even the recommended 150 minutes of weekly physical activity fails to protect against the effects.

Professor Jean-Philippe Drouin-Chartier, of Université Laval’s Faculty of Pharmacy, said: “Physical activity reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease associated with sugar-sweetened beverages by half, but it does not fully eliminate it.

“The marketing strategies for these drinks often show active people drinking these beverages. It suggests that sugary drink consumption has no negative effects on health if you’re physically active.”

The research team specifically looked at consumption of these drinks twice a week, which they note is relatively low, and it was still significantly associated with cardiovascular disease risk.

Researchers found that the benefits of physical activity do not outweigh the risks of cardiovascular disease, the world’s biggest killer, caused by sugar-sweetened drinks. PHOTO BY VICTOR RUTKA/UNSPLASH 

More frequent consumption such as daily drinks was seen to have even higher risks.

Artificially sweetened drinks were not associated with any increased risk in cardiovascular disease suggesting that they are a safer alternative.

Professor Drouin-Chartier said: “Replacing sugar-sweetened beverages by diet drinks is good, because it reduces the amount of sugar. But the best drink option remains water.”

The team hope that their findings will encourage people to steer clear of sugar-sweetened beverages such as soft and carbonated drinks, lemonade, and fruit cocktails.

Lead author and research scientist Lorena Pacheco added: “Our findings provide further support for public health recommendations and policies to limit people’s intake of sugar-sweetened beverages, as well as to encourage people to meet and maintain adequate physical activity levels.”

Produced in association with SWNS Talker