Drink risk: Higher intake of sweetened beverages linked to increased CVD mortality in younger adults – Study
Subjects without cardiovascular disease risk factors also faced an increased mortality risk of up to 2.5 times.
Hence, a team of Taiwanese researchers concluded that the consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages should be averted to prevent possible cardiovascular disease-associated mortality.
The findings were documented in their paper titled “Association of Sugar-Sweetened Beverages and Cardiovascular Diseases Mortality in a Large Young Cohort of Nearly 300,000 Adults (Age 20-39)”, published in the journal Nutrients.
“The consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages in Taiwan has increased 8.9% annually between 2005 and 2019, and sugar-sweetened beverage intake in the whole of Asia has been expected to increase in the coming decade.
“Although many previous studies have investigated the association between sugar-sweetened beverages intake and cardiovascular disease mortality by age groups, the association between the intake and cardiovascular mortality or incidence in younger adults (age 20 to 39) is rarely mentioned, particularly in the Asian population,” said the researchers.
The team then embarked on a study involving 288,747 participants aged 20 to 39 from a medical screening program to assess the association between cardiovascular disease mortality and sugar-sweetened beverage intake from 1994 to 2017. The team also considered the death tolls related to cardiovascular disease, diabetes and kidney disease.
‘Sweet heart’ o’ mine
Results of the study showed that sugar-sweetened beverage intake was associated with cardiovascular disease mortality in younger adults. The risk persisted even after adjustment or exclusion of other possible factors such as smoking, alcohol drinking, hypertension, diabetes and obesity.
Second, the researchers found a relationship between the intake of beverages and cardiovascular mortality for younger adults below 40. Those who consumed two or more servings per day showed significantly higher mortality risk from cardiovascular diseases. Sugar-sweetened beverage intake was also positively associated with the mortality risk from expanded cardiovascular diseases, with the inclusion of mortalities related to diabetes or kidney disease.
Nonetheless, consumption of such beverages might be less significant than factors like smoking, obesity, hypertension and diabetes in contributing to cardiovascular mortality. The reason is the association was not statistically significant in the presence of the abovementioned risk factors. Moreover, a high intake of these beverages was found to be developing in tandem with comorbidities like smoking, obesity and diabetes – consistent with current literature.
“Our study supports the rationale for discouraging sugar-sweetened beverage intake, smoking, and alcohol drinking to avert the mortality risk of cardiovascular disease, particularly for younger adults. Based on the findings, more research is required to identify the mechanisms for the association of the beverages with cardiovascular disease mortality,” said the team.
The study was partly funded by the Taiwanese Ministry of Health and Welfare Clinical Trial Center and China Medical University, Tseng-Lien Lin Foundation, Taichung, Taiwan.
“Association of Sugar-Sweetened Beverages and Cardiovascular Diseases Mortality in a Large Young Cohort of Nearly 300,000 Adults (Age 20-39)”
Authors: Chen Chien-Hua et al.
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